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Senator works to update Illinois’ criminal justice system

3/1/2017, 2:44 p.m.
Illinois has not updated credit for incarceration laws since the 1960s. Illinois’ criminal justice system may soon receive a modernization ...

Illinois has not updated credit for incarceration laws since the 1960s.

Illinois’ criminal justice system may soon receive a modernization from Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park).

Hastings advanced Senate Bill 903 to increase the credit given to a defendant who is incarcerated for a bailable offense.

If a person is incarcerated for a bailable offense but is unable to supply bail they can apply for credit toward their fine. Under current law, a person can receive a $5 per a day.

“We need to update and reform the front end of the criminal justice system,” Hastings said. “A law from the 1960s doesn’t meet the needs of Illinois residents. It’s important for government to evolve with the needs of the people.”

SB 903 will increase the credit given to a defendant who is incarcerated for a bailable offense and did not post bail from $5 to $30.

A bailable offense is a violation where it is evidence that the proof of guilt is not obvious and the assumption of guilt is not great.

“There has been a meaningful bipartisan push to pass more criminal justice reform measures to update existing laws and create a commonsense approach to reducing crime,” Hastings said. “This is one small step we can take to push for a fair and equitable criminal justice system.”

Senate Bill 903 passed the Senate’s committee on Criminal Justice with bipartisan support and now moves to the full Senate for consideration.