Thursday, April 26, 2007

Voting encourages personal responsibility

This time of year, if a bill is being heard in the opposite chamber of its origin, there's a pretty good chance of its passage. So I'm glad to see HB 770, a small but good bill by Dutton/Lucio, getting a hearing today in the Senate State Affairs Committee. (Here's the House Research Organization's bill analysis.)

The legislation would have TDCJ notify ex-felons in writing when they become eligible to vote and provide a registration card. Those interested should take a look at the fact sheet from the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition describing the bill, and their committee testimony on the topic. Said TCJC's executive director Ana Correa:
Ensuring that individuals who are returning to the community are able and willing to participate in civic life can point them in the right direction: they will be able to take on the responsibilities of fully-informed citizens and become more likely to work for the greater good. They will be able to vote on policies that will help them become and stay law-abiding, productive citizens. Finally, having a stake in civic life will encourage them to avoid returning to crime (and prison), creating an incentive for responsible living.
UPDATE (4/27): This bill was unanimously approved in committee and recommended for the Senate local and uncontested calendar.


Anonymous said...

Bravo! It's true, a lot of ex-felons don't know they can vote when they get off paper. This one registered within days of finishing my time.

Anonymous said...

This one did too...and votes in every election.