June 26th, 2009 | by Katie Litvin News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, CLEAN UP, Legislature

House Passes Bill Suspending Measure 57's Mandatory Sentences, Saving $$

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The Oregon House today passed a bill aimed at resoling the dispute over funding Measure 57 and releasing prisoners to close the state budget gap.

Rep. Chip Shields (D-Portland) crafted a compromise measure he says will "keep faith with the voters" who passed Measure 57 last fall. The measure includes stiffer sentences for some property crimes and calls for more drug treatment.

Measure 57 went into effect at the beginning of this year. Shields' House Bill 3508 would continue the measure until Feb. 15, 2010, then suspend the measure until Jan. 1, 2012.

The also increases earned time for non-violent offenders from 20 percent to 30 percent, meaning earlier releases and a reduced prison population.

After the House passed the bill today 40-19, it now moves to the Senate for consideration.
 
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