A Senate committee heard testimony Tuesday on a proposed expansion in the expungement of criminal records in Rhode Island. Supporters call expungement a way for former offenders to overcome past mistakes.
Deacon Jay Parker was one of the people to speak before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Parker says criminal charges from more than 20 years ago have been an obstacle when he’s applied for jobs.
Congressman David Cicilline predicts that public outrage about the impact of across the board spending cuts will eventually lead to a new budget agreement. Early voting could come to RI if a proposed bill is passed by the General Assembly. These stories and more on the RIPR Morning News Podcast.
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There’s a lot of talk on Smith Hill this week about guns, including several new bills that aim to tighten gun ownership and possession laws. We sat down with Attorney General Peter Kilmartin to learn more about how his office is contributing to the gun conversation. One major issue is Rhode Island’s participation in the national gun background check databases.
US Attorney Peter Neronha is Rhode Island's top federal prosecutor. His office prosecutes about 40 or so gun-related cases each year, some of them with far stiffer sentences than state prosecutions. But Neronha says prosecutions are just one part of what it will take to reduce gun-related crime. He also questions the view among some in law enforcement that federal sentencing has a stronger deterrent effect in gun cases.
A crucial aspect of the state’s new Open Meetings and Access to Public Records acts is whether the attorney general is ready to be vigilant in enforcing the amended provisions approved by the General Assembly.
The good news for open government advocates is that Atty. Gen. Peter Kilmartin has announced that he and his staff are holding a July 27th information seminar at Roger Williams University School of Law in Bristol to explain details of the new law, which is designed to strengthen Rhode Island’s open government laws, which have too often been ignored in the past.