Lawmakers Debate Good Time Law ConcerningFurloughs - FOX 42: Omaha News, Sports and Weather; |

Lawmakers Debate Good Time Law ConcerningFurloughs

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Leah Uko

LINCOLN (KPTM)- For months there has been debate about reforming good time release and furlough rules for prisoners. Now, big names in Omaha are weighing in. They met at a public hearing Wednesday  in Lincoln.

"It gave him hope. That if he could change, he would be able to have a life." Mary Waltermeyer married her husband when they found out his parole date was set. The two met and fell in love when he illustrated her children's book. The thought of taking away good time release Waltermeyer says is unbearable.

"It doesn't reward when you do well. There's something wrong with that—that's not the way it was intended."

Omaha State Senator Ernie Chambers wasted no time taking his stance on why all inmates should be granted good time early release if they earn it.

"And we talk about building another prison. The city is not going to come up with any money to do it. So I'm looking beyond."     

That's because this would cost more than 2 million dollars.

"This is not about a pride of authorship. This is about refining what you started with years ago that has good purpose," Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle said.

Suttle, along with Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer and others argued that making violent offenders serve their entire sentences would reduce crime.

No immediate action was taken on the bill, keeping Mary on edge about her and her husband's future.

"They control their life. If they do good work, good things will happen. If they mess up they will pay for it. My children learned that."

After all of the talks finished what they all agreed on is that this proposal needs revising before it can be deeply considered. And this may or may not be before the Omaha mayoral election.


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