On April 27th, Governor Deal signed into law the most recent round of criminal justice reforms in Georgia. Senate Bill 367 enacts many of the recommendations of the state’s Council on Criminal Justice Reform.

Among the reforms are a number that will improve the ability of returning citizens to obtain employment, a key to reducing recidivism, including:

– Allowing first-time offenders to meaningfully shield their criminal record under the state’s First Offender Act,

– Providing greater access to occupational licensing, provided that the offense was not reasonably related to the license being sought,

– Reinstating driver’s licenses for those convicted of drug-related offenses that did not involve a motor vehicle,

– Expanding funding for Parental Accountability Courts that are problem-solving courts designed to reduce incarceration and constructively encourage parents to support their children. See our 2015 report on PACs here.

GCO is pleased that the reforms included recommendations we first made in 2013.