Mr. "Tough On Crime", Senator Anthony Sykes, strategically withdrew his bill from the public safety committee, today. It appeared he would suffer a clear defeat in that committee.
Sykes has been enjoying dictatorial power over many law enforcement legislative issues, thanks to some very undemocratic rules of the senate chamber. But when Pro Temp, Senator Mike Schultz assigned the repeal of the repeal (a move to greatly undo a voter initiative which overwhelmingly passed a statewide vote), to the Public Safety Committee. Senator Jack Fry chairs that committee.
Former House Speaker, Kris Steele, had authored the statewide election language. He is also an ordained minister who is passionate about recovering the potential of those trapped in addiction.
Steele, chairman of Oklahomans for Criminal Justice Reform, credited voters for pressuring lawmakers.
"Keeping the state questions intact and supporting the governor's task force bills saves taxpayers nearly $2 billion, makes us safer and restores lives," said Steele, who led the campaign last year for State Questions 780 and 781.
"We're optimistic that when this session ends, legislators will have built on the progress made by Oklahoma voters by enacting more historic reforms that send Oklahoma's criminal justice system back in the right direction.”
Dale Denwalt of the Oklahoman provides complete coverage of the events and developments on Criminal Justice Reforms.
Denwalt has been recognized many times for his reporting and has received state and national awards for in-depth investigative journalism.
Read the full report at: http://newsok.com/article/5544503