February 20, 2007
On Thursday, Arkansas lawmakers shelved proposed legislation for testing inmates for HIV, tuberculosis, and syphilis before they leave prison. The Pubic Health, Welfare and Labor Committee voted 13-4 to table House Bill 1444 after questioning its costs, liabilities, and procedures. Other legislators wanted to include "flat-timers," inmates who would complete their sentences without ever becoming eligible for parole. After the committee meeting, Rep. Fred Allen (D-Little Rock) said he would retool his bill to address these issues. "I still have a chance to run it," he said, noting that committee members promised they would reconsider the bill in the near future.