Bill description: SB 1241 would establish a process for reimbursing the fines and fees a defendant might have paid due to a criminal conviction if that conviction is vacated (i.e., nullified).
Does it in any way restrict public access to information related to government activity or otherwise compromise government transparency or accountability? Conversely, does it increase public access to information related to government activity or increase government transparency or accountability?
An individual who has been convicted of a crime may file a petition requesting the court to vacate their conviction. By vacating a conviction, a court essentially removes the conviction from the person’s record and the petitioner is cleared of any charges. However, there is no process established in Idaho for returning any fines or fees that might have come with the conviction. Even if their conviction is successfully vacated, the petitioner could still be out the legal fines and fees he was required to pay.
SB 1241 would establish a process for a court to return money to petitioners. Because petitioners are not considered guilty when their conviction is vacated, it is not fair to require that they pay any related fines or fees.
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