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Second Chance Act: 108th – 110th Congress House Bill Comparison April 17, 2007

Posted by FairSentencing in : Current News , trackback

The Second Chance Act of 2007 is designed to reduce recidivism, increase public safety, and help ensure the safe and successful return of prisoners to the community. The House bill, H.R. 1593, was reintroduced and passed by the full Judiciary Committee.

Click here (pdf) to view a chart that summarizes the major provisions of the bill and compares the legislation to the versions introduced in 2004 and 2005.

The full text of the legislation is available online at http://thomas.loc.gov.

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1. TRP - May 20, 2007

Support HR 623 – Charles Rangel’s Second Chance Act

You may already be a supporter of HR 1593 entitled “The Second Chance Act of 2007” sponsored by Congressman Davis.

Well, there is a second “Second Chance Act” – HR 623 which is sponsored by Charles Rangel (D-NY) and which is as vitally important.

Rangel’s bill would provide that non-violent first-time offenders who have completed successfully all terms of their sentence, provided a year of community service and have proven themselves to be both drug and alcohol free are entitled to prove their rehabilitation by clear and convincing evidence before a federal judge in a “min-trial”. Further, if there is ever a subsequent conviction for any state or federal crime, the expungement is completely negated and the facts of the prior crime can be used for any purpose. While Rangel’s bill provides that if a federal judge orders expungement of the conviction the ex-offender can receive civil benefits as though there had been on conviction, law enforcement is at all times able to access the conviction information.

Virtually all states have some sort of relief afforded to their offenders either through passage of time or by an expungement proceeding such as that proposed by Congressman Rangel.

At this time, there is absolutely no provision for federal ex-offenders. The “Power of the Pardon” has died in the White House according to Margy Love, former Pardon Attorney under both Republican and Democratic administrations. In fact, so few pardons are granted that the current administration has ceased publishing the statistics. In the past 12 months only about 10 have been granted. Were the rates of pardon-granting from the 1920’s still followed, there would have been more than 10,000 pardons each year since Bush took office. These statistics are shown on our site at http://www.rehabilitated.org/compassion.htm.

Thus, there is a crying need for reform. There also no wonder that America has the developed world’s highest recidivism rate. While all other developed countries do there best to reintegrate ex-offenders, in America it is a bus ticket and twenty bucks.

Thus, your support for HR 623 is as important as your support for HR 1593. You can join our Coalition by visiting our site, http://www.rehabilitated.org and using our contact page. Or, you can call me at 877-587-9266.

Sincerely,
Charles Benninghoff
Founder & Trustee
The Rehabilitated Project
http://www.rehabilitated.org