Senate bill could lower costs for the OK Dept of Corrections - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Senate bill could lower costs for the OK Dept of Corrections

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (KSWO)- A Senate committee will hear a bill today that could help the Oklahoma Department of Corrections lower costs. It's aimed at letting non-violent offenders over the age of 50 who are deemed frail to go before the pardon and parole board.

The bill's author says it would lower medical costs for the department and solve the issue of overcrowding. He added that right now, about 1,800 prisoners across the state would be eligible for the hearing.

"Take, for example, there's an inmate, maybe at Mabel Bassett, who is medically frail, who has severe osteoporosis. She might be able to lay in bed and then in the morning she might be able to sit up, but she certainly couldn't stand up," said Rep. Greg Babinec.

The bill's author says currently the Department of Corrections pays about $3,000 per year per inmates aged 50 to 68 on medical bills, and for older inmates, about $20,000.

He also noted that there is a provision in the bill requiring victims in the cases to be notified if the offenders are granted a hearing.

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