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Prison Overcrowding Bill Clears House Committee

Comprehensive legislation designed to reduce overcrowding in Kentucky jails and prisons cleared its first legislative hurdle Tuesday night.The House Judiciary Committee said yes to a package of penal code revisions sponsored by Democratic Representative John Tilley of Hopkinsville. The bill, which Tilley predicts will save Kentucky $42 million a year over the next 10 years, is expected to get a House floor vote on Thursday.The measure, which has bipartisan support, provides alternatives to prison for non-violent drug offenders, and seeks to reduce recidivism rates through drug treatment programs.Similar legislation has been filed by Republican Sen. Tom Jensen of London, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.