Black Caucus considering sentencing commission proposal

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Members of the Tennessee Black Caucus of State Legislators say they’re considering legislation that would bring back a commission that sought to make sentencing fairer and keep costs down.

The group sponsored a town hall meeting on Thursday to discuss mass incarceration and its impact on the community.

The group heard from a number of speakers, including Nashville attorney David Raybin, who was a member of the sentencing commission that was sunset in 1995.

Raybin has been a vocal advocate of the commission, a panel he says is needed because “you constantly need to tweak and respond to criminal justice issues.”

Black Caucus Chairwoman Brenda Gilmore says the group is considering legislation to restart the commission, as well as proposals that would provide alternative sentencing for individuals with drug or mental health problems.