Senate Bill 391: Expungement Reform for
Pennsylvania Criminal Records
Expungement means a second chance for deserving people and a big savings for all of PA.
Get Involved Now
Find the official bill here.
Subscribe to the Pennsylvania Expungement Newsletter
- Keep up-to-date with expungement news
- Learn how you can help Pennsylvania law
- Get involved!
Contact your state senator. Search by name or county.
Tuesday, January 28 2014
After being approved in a unanimous vote by the Pennsylvania State Senate in October, Senate Bill 391, the expungement bill sponsored by Senator Timothy Solobay (D – 46) is waiting for action in the House Committee on the Judiciary. Supporters of the bill say that Committee Chairman Ronald Marisco (R -105) may allow for a vote on the bill in February.
Chairman Marisco has strong law-enforcement connections and a solid anti-crime voting record, so he may be having an knee-jerk reaction to this bill. Hopefully, he will see that the bill is supported by the state’s district attorneys and that other red states have passed laws that expanded expungement.
What The Senate Bill 391 Will Accomplish
SB 391 will expand the Pennsylvania courts ability to expunge criminal records to include low level misdemeanors after waiting periods have been met. Under current law, no misdemeanor convictions are eligible to be expunged.
Please contact representative Marisco and ask him to allow a vote on SB 391.
He can be reached via email at email@example.com or you can call his office at 717-783-2014.
Tuesday, October 15 2013
The Senate was schedule to vote on SB 391 today, but the bill was held over until Wednesday. Senate insiders are optimistic that the entire Senate will vote the bill on this week. Attorney Mathew Higbee says that he expects the bill to pass by a strong majority. “SB 391 makes for good law and it passed with unanimous support in committee. I would be shocked if it did not receive the majority of votes needed for passage and even surprised if it did not receive more than forty votes in support.”
The Pennsylvania Senate is comprised of 50 Senators. Assuming that all members vote, 26 votes in support are needed to approve the bill. If approved, Senate Bill 391 will need to be approved by the State House and then the governor.
Monday, June 24 – Harrisburg, PA. The bill proposing to greatly expand Pennsylvania’s expungement law, Senate Bill 391, was moved up on the Senate calendar today. Representatives from Senator Tim Solobay’s office said they are optimistic about the full Senate vote happening this week. Senate Bill 391 was unanimously approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee on June 17, 2013, and has since been awaiting a vote by the full Senate.
Senate Bill 391, which is sponsored by Senator Solobay, modernizes Pennyslvania’s expungement law by allowing some offenders with low-level misdemeanors to expunge their record after they have proven that they are rehabilitated and satisfied a substantial waiting period. If Pennsylvania enacts this legislation, they will join seventeen other states that have expanded their expungement laws in the past five years.
Please contact your state Senator and let them know you support SB 391.
Monday, June 17 – Harrisburg, PA. The Senate Appropriations Committee unanimously approved Senate Bill 391 today. The bill, which is sponsored by Senator Tim Solobay, will expand the eligibility for expungement of criminal records to include some low-level misdemeanors.
The next step for the bill is a vote by the full Senate on the senate floor. Mathew Higbee, an attorney and former political consultant who tracks expungement bills nationwide, says that he would expect that the bill will be supported by the full Senate. “It is rare for a bill to be rejected in a full floor vote after it gets unanimous support by a bi-partisan committee,” said Higbee.
The Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi controls the schedule for the floor vote. Those who support the bill are encouraged to call Senator Pileggi and let him know that you support SB 391, the expungement bill. Senator Pillegi can be reached at 717-787-4712 or via email through his web site at http://www.senatorpileggi.com/email-senator-pileggi/
The Senate Appropriations Committee is schedule a vote on SB 391 for Monday, June 17, 2013. The committee is composed of 15 Republicans and 9 Democrats. Senator Jake Corman is the chair. A complete list of committee members can be found here: http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/CteeInfo/index.cfm?Code=3&CteeBody=S. The committee must pass the bill in order for the full Senate to have an opportunity to vote on the bill.
SB 391 modernizes Pennyslvania’s expungement law by letting low-level offenders to expunge their record after they have proven that they are rehabilitated and met substantial waiting periods. Seventeen states have expanded their expungement laws in the past five years. Expungement expansion has been supported by Republican and Democrat state legislatures.
Please contact your representative and let them know you support SB 391.
Senate Bill 391 would allow those convicted of certain misdemeanors of the second and third degree to apply to have the record expunged if they keep a clean record for seven years and 10 years, respectively.
State Sen. Tim Solobay has reintroduced legislation intended to curb prison costs and lower recidivism rates by clearing minor criminal records so that former offenders can find employment.
Senate Bill 391 would allow individuals who were convicted of certain misdemeanors of the second and third degree to apply to have the record expunged if they keep a clean record for seven years and 10 years, respectively.
“Society isn’t helped by being stubbornly strict with lawbreakers who have paid their debt,” Solobay said. “If we want them to become productive members of society, we have to remove the stigma by clearing the record when appropriate. This will keep them out of prison and everybody wins.”
Pennsylvania’s prison population has jumped from just more than 8,000 to more than 51,000 in the past 20 years, and costs have risen 37 percent in the past 10 years.