COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Legislators are working on a bill to erase nonviolent felonies from the records of now-upstanding citizens in hopes of helping them secure high-paying jobs.
Sen. Vincent Sheheen said Thursday the goal is to remove the criminal label that makes a successful career difficult for those who made a mistake and have since turned their lives around. The Camden Democrat says the state needs them to be working and paying taxes.
Sheheen heard from representatives of law enforcement, crime victims and prosecutors to help his subcommittee tweak a bill the House approved unanimously last year. They want someone's record to be clear at least 10 years to qualify.
Rep. Todd Rutherford of Columbia argues against a time frame, saying that people who secure a pardon should have their record expunged immediately.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)