The Massachusetts Senate is expected to approve changes in the state Probation Department following a report that it has become a patronage haven for lawmakers.
Sen. Cynthia Creem said Tuesday that she expected the Senate to create a five-year term for the probation commissioner when it begins state budget debate on Wednesday.
Creem, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, also expects the Senate to give the judiciary some hiring and budget controls at the department. And she anticipates approval of a task force headed by Attorney General Martha Coakley to determine whether the probation and parole departments should be combined and placed under control of the executive branch.
Probation Commissioner John O'Brien was suspended on Monday following a series of articles by The Boston Globe.
This program aired on May 25, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.