About Sentencing and Policy Advisory Commission

To make recommendations to the General Assembly for the modification of sentencing laws and policies.

The North Carolina Sentencing and Policy Advisory Commission was created by the General Assembly in 1990 to make recommendations to the General Assembly for the modification of sentencing laws and policies, and for the addition, deletion, or expansion of sentencing options as necessary to achieve policy goals. Specifically, the Commission was directed to:

  • Classify criminal offenses into felony and misdemeanor categories on the basis of their severity;
  • Recommend structures for use by a sentencing court in determining the most appropriate sentence to be imposed in a criminal case;
  • Develop a correctional population simulation model;
  • Recommend a comprehensive community corrections strategy and organizational structure for the State; and,
  • Study and make additional policy recommendations.

The Commission has 28 members drawn from all three branches of government; from all areas of the criminal justice system; and from the public. The Commission's prior work led to the passage of the Structured Sentencing Act which became effective in 1994. That law established truth in sentencing and prescribed sentencing options for judges based on the severity of the crime and the prior record of the offender.

History of SPAC/Structured Sentencing and Case Law

Commission Members

Hon. Charlie Brown, Chairman Chief District Court Judge
Frances Battle Victim Assistance Network
Hon. Warren Daniel State Senator
Louise Davis Community Sentencing Association
Danielle Marquis Elder Attorney General's Office
Hon. Sherri Elliott District Court Judges’ Association
Hon. John Faircloth State Representative
Hon. Milton “Toby” Fitch, Jr. State Senator
Willis Fowler Post-Release Supervision & Parole Commission
Lindsey Granados Advocates for Justice
Hon. R. Greg Horne Conference of Superior Court Judges
Joseph Houchin Lieutenant Governor's Appointee
Susan Katzenelson Private Citizen, Governor's Appointee
Chief Henry King, Jr. Association of Chiefs of Police
Hon. Tammy Lee Association of County Commissioners
Sheriff Garry McFadden Sheriffs' Association
Dr. Harvey McMurray Academic Member
Hon. Allen McNeill State Representative
Hon. James Mixson, III Association of Clerks of Superior Court
Luther Moore Retail Merchants' Association
Timothy Moose Department of Public Safety
Hon. Fred Morrison, Jr. Justice Fellowship
Hon. William Richardson State Representative
Hon. Bob Steinburg, Sr. State Senator
Calvin Suber Commission Chairman's Appointee
Hon. Michael Waters Conference of District Attorneys
Patrick Weede Bar Association
Hon. Valerie Zachary Court of Appeals

Commission Staff

N.C. Sentencing and Policy Advisory Commission
PO Box 2448
Raleigh, NC 27602-2448
Phone: (919) 890-1470
Fax: (919) 890-1933

Michelle Hall Executive Director
John Madler Associate Director for Policy, Staff Attorney
Ginny Hevener Associate Director for Research
Meghan Boyd Ward Research & Policy Associate
Tamara Flinchum Senior Research & Policy Associate
John King Senior Research & Policy Associate
Shelley Kirk Administrative Secretary
Melissa Lugo Research & Policy Associate
Jennifer Lutz Research & Policy Associate
Rebecca Whitaker Research & Policy Associate

Commission Meetings - Agendas and Minutes

2022 SPAC Commission Meetings
  • March 4, 2022
  • June 3, 2022
  • September 9, 2022
  • December 2, 2022
2021 SPAC Commission Meetings
  • March 5, 2021
  • May 7, 2021
  • June 4, 2021
  • September 10, 2021
  • December 3, 2021

2020 SPAC Commission Meetings

  • March 6, 2020
  • June 5, 2020
  • September 11, 2020
  • December 4, 2020

2019 SPAC Commission Meetings

2018 SPAC Commission Meetings

2017 SPAC Commission Meetings

See all meeting agendas and minutes