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Washington State's sentencing reform in the early 1980s encompassed all felonies, including those resulting in sentences to prison and jail; the state also enacted the first and only sentencing guidelines for juvenile offenders. Several lessons are suggested from Washington's experience: sentencing guidelines can change sentencing patterns and can reduce disparities among offenders who are sentenced for similar crimes and have similar criminal histories; a sentencing commission does not operate as an independent political force, except when such delegation serves the legislature's purpose; guidelines are policy-neutral technologies that can be harnessed to achieve the legislature's will; in states where citizen initiatives are authorized, sentencing issues will appear on the ballot, attract political support, and make significant changes to sentencing policy; guidelines allow a state to set sentences with advance knowledge of the consequences to prison and jail populations; guidelines are likely to become more complex over time as legislators strive to respond to new perceptions of crime seriousness, while simultaneously paying attention to prison and jail costs.