Special Illinois Senate committee looking into prison sentencing

A panel testified to a special committee of the state Senate this week. (Photo courtesy: WJBC/File)

By Dave Dahl

SPRINGFIELD – Some numbers-crunchers presented to a special Illinois Senate committee on criminal law and public safety Wednesday, saying one service they offer is to examine bills.

“Fiscal impacts are analyses of proposed legislation,” said John Specker of the Illinois Sentencing Policy Advisory Council. “They will provide demographic impacts, victimization impacts, sentencing impacts, and just a little bit more financial information around what that proposal will do.”

State Sen. Robert Peters (D-Chicago) says he was embarrassed during a recent trip to Germany at the awe with which German prosecutors and police held “how bad we do public safety and how harsh we are in terms of sentencing in America.”

Fielding a question about aging in prison, SPAC executive director Victoria Gonzalez said incarceration accelerates the aging process; considering the health of a 55-year-old is more like that of a 65-year-old.

Dave Dahl can be reached at [email protected].


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