OKLAHOMA CITY – Legislation to modernize Oklahoma’s expungement process has been approved by the Oklahoma House of Representatives and is now available to be heard in the Senate.
The unemployment rate for justice-involved Oklahomans is five times the state average. Research from the University of Michigan found people are 11% more likely to be employed and are earning 22% higher wages one year after a record is cleared.
House Bill 3316, authored by Rep. Nicole Miller, R-Edmond, creates Oklahoma’s “Clean Slate Law,” which automates the expungement process for certain charges, reducing administrative costs and paperwork. This would be accomplished by using modern computer tools to streamline the record clearance process, with a final review by the arresting agency, law-enforcement agencies and the courts.
“There are hundreds of thousands of Oklahomans who qualify for expungement, but they can’t afford to pay an attorney or take the time off work to go through the process,” Miller said. “Record expungement gives people an opportunity they couldn’t receive previously by removing barriers to employment, housing and education. The potential impact of House Bill 3316 cannot be overstated—this would dramatically transform the lives of thousands of families across the state.”
HB3316 passed the House 87-4 and is now available to be heard in the Senate, where it is authored by Sen. Adam Pugh, R-Edmond.