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20 ILCS 2605/2605-615
(20 ILCS 2605/2605-615)
Illinois Forensic Science Commission.
(a) Creation. There is created within the Illinois State Police the Illinois Forensic Science Commission.
(b) Duties and purpose. The Commission shall:
(1) Provide guidance to ensure the efficient delivery
of forensic services and the sound practice of forensic science.
(2) Provide a forum for discussions between forensic
science stakeholders to improve communication and coordination and to monitor the important issues impacting all stakeholders.
(3) Take a systems-based approach in reviewing all
aspects of the delivery of forensic services and the sound practice of forensic science with the goal of reducing or eliminating the factors and inefficiencies that contribute to backlogs and errors, with a focus on education and training, funding, hiring, procurement, and other aspects identified by the Commission.
(4) Review significant non-conformities with the
sound practice of forensic science documented by each publicly funded forensic laboratory and offer recommendations for the correction thereof.
(5) Subject to appropriation, provide educational,
research, and professional training opportunities for practicing forensic scientists, police officers, judges, State's Attorneys and Assistant State's Attorneys, Public Defenders, and defense attorneys comporting with the sound practice of forensic science.
(6) Collect and analyze information related to the
impact of current laws, rules, policies, and practices on forensic crime laboratories and the practice of forensic science; evaluate the impact of those laws, rules, policies, and practices on forensic crime laboratories and the practice of forensic science; identify new policies and approaches, together with changes in science, and technology; and make recommendations for changes to those laws, rules, policies, and practices that will yield better results in the criminal justice system consistent with the sound practice of forensic science.
(7) Perform such other studies or tasks pertaining to
forensic crime laboratories as may be requested by the General Assembly by resolution or the Governor, and perform such other functions as may be required by law or as are necessary to carry out the purposes and goals of the Commission prescribed in this Section.
(8) Ensure that adequate resources and facilities are
available for carrying out the changes proposed in legislation, rules, or policies and that rational priorities are established for the use of those resources. To do so, the Commission may prepare statements to the Governor and General Assembly identifying the fiscal and practical effects of proposed legislation, rules, or policy changes. Such statements may include, but are not limited to: the impact on present levels of staffing and resources; a professional opinion on the practical value of the change or changes; the increase or decrease the number of crime laboratories; the increase or decrease the cost of operating crime laboratories; the impact on efficiencies and caseloads; other information, including but not limited to, facts, data, research, and science relevant to the legislation, rule, or policy; the direct or indirect alteration in any process involving or used by crime laboratories of such proposed legislation, rules, or policy changes; an analysis of the impact, either directly or indirectly, on the technology, improvements, or practices of forensic analyses for use in criminal proceedings; together with the direct or indirect impact on headcount, space, equipment, instruments, accreditation, the volume of cases for analysis, scientific controls, and quality assurance.
(c) Members. The Commission shall be composed of the Director of the Illinois State Police, or his or her designee, together with the following members appointed for a term of 4 years by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate:
(1) One crime laboratory director or administrator
from each publicly funded forensic laboratory system.
(2) One member with experience in the admission of
forensic evidence in trials from a statewide association representing prosecutors.
(3) One member with experience in the admission of
forensic evidence in trials from a statewide association representing criminal defense attorneys.
(4) Three forensic scientists with bench work
background from various forensic disciplines (e.g., DNA, chemistry, pattern evidence, etc.).
(5) One retired circuit court judge or associate
circuit court judge with criminal trial experience, including experience in the admission of forensic evidence in trials.
(6) One academic specializing in the field of
(7) One or more community representatives (e.g.,
victim advocates, innocence project organizations, sexual assault examiners, etc.).
(8) One member who is a medical examiner or coroner.
The Governor shall designate one of the members of the Commission to serve as the chair of the Commission. The members of the Commission shall elect from their number such other officers as they may determine. Members of the Commission shall serve without compensation, but may be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in the performance of their duties from funds appropriated for that purpose.
(d) Subcommittees. The Commission may form subcommittees to study specific issues identified under paragraph (3) of subsection (b), including, but not limited to, subcommittees on education and training, procurement, funding and hiring. Ad hoc subcommittees may also be convened to address other issues. Such subcommittees shall meet as needed to complete their work, and shall report their findings back to the Commission. Subcommittees shall include members of the Commission, and may also include non-members such as forensic science stakeholders and subject matter experts.
(e) Meetings. The Commission shall meet quarterly, at the call of the chairperson. Facilities for meeting, whether remotely or in person, shall be provided for the Commission by the Illinois State Police.
(f) Reporting by publicly funded forensic laboratories. All State and local publicly funded forensic laboratory systems, including, but not limited to, the DuPage County Forensic Science Center, the Northeastern Illinois Regional Crime Laboratory, and the Illinois State Police, shall annually provide to the Commission a report summarizing its significant non-conformities with the efficient delivery of forensic services and the sound practice of forensic science. The report will identify:
each significant non-conformity or deficient method;
how the non-conformity or deficient method was detected;
the nature and extent of the non-conformity or deficient method;
all corrective actions implemented to address the non-conformity or deficient method;
and an analysis of the effectiveness of the corrective actions taken.
(g) Definition. As used in this Section, "Commission" means the Illinois Forensic Science Commission.
(Source: P.A. 102-523, eff. 8-20-21; 103-34, eff. 1-1-24