Alabama Senate passes bill to delay fees for released prisoners

The bill would delay fines and fees for the recently released for 180 days.

he Alabama Senate on Wednesday quickly passed numerous largely non-controversial bills, and among them was legislation that would give those released from custody extra time before having to pay fines and fees. 

During the 180-day period after a person is released from custody, they would not be required to pay any outstanding court-assessed fines, fees or costs, according to House Bill 95’s amended language. Restitution owed to victims would not be included in that grace period. 

Rep. Jeremy Gray, D-Opelika, who sponsored the bill, said last month during debate on the bill in the House that the legislation was needed to give those recently released time to find work, housing and obtain a driver’s license, according to 

Rep. Steve Clouse, R-Ozark, introduced an amendment to reduce the grace period to 90 days, which the House approved, but the Senate Judiciary Committee later put forth an amendment to return the grace period back to 180 days, which was approved in the Senate on Wednesday. 

Because the Senate passed an amended version of the bill Wednesday, the House will now have to concur with the amended bill before it could be sent to Ivey for her signature.

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