Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Expungement Fees for Nonviolent Offenders to be Lowered

Posted By on Wed, May 24, 2017 at 5:38 PM

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 Mayor Jim Strickland announced today that expungement fees for Memphians who have committed nonviolent offenses will be lowered.

As the result of a bill passed in the most recent session of the Tennessee General Assembly, the cost to expunge records will lower from $450, a price the mayor says many could not afford to pay, to $180.

"By helping those who need their records expunged but can't afford the fee, we're lending a helping hand to someone who wants to make a better, more productive life," Mayor Strickland said.

Rep. Raumesh Akbari, of the Tennessee House's criminal justice committee says it is a major landmark to pass legislation that lowers expungement fees. She believes the lower fee will help people get back to work, be able to vote, and reduce the overall  recidivism rate.

"For me the bottom line was I don't want anybody to have to suffer for the consequences of their actions on their worst day," Akbari said. "We can get them back to work, moving forward, and actually being a part of society, rather than a burden to society."

Also announced today, donations to the Better Memphis Fund, which supports the expungements will be matched up to $25,000 by a grant from the Speer Charitable Trust.

A fundraiser will be held Monday, June 5 at Hattiloo Theater. Additionally donations can be made online through the Community Foundation of Greater Memphis.

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