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Bill Seeks Vote on Okla. Gov. in Parole Process (Feb 14, 2012)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Oklahoma voters will have the final say on whether the governor should be involved in the parole process for nonviolent criminals.

Under a resolution approved in the House on Tuesday, the question will be sent to voters in November.

House Speaker Kris Steele says the measure could save the state up to $40 million in incarceration costs for inmates recommended for parole who remain behind bars while the governor considers final approval of their parole.

Steele says Oklahoma is the only state in which the governor is required to sign every parole.

If approved by voters, the governor would only have to sign paroles for certain violent offenders. Lawmakers approved a similar bill last year, but the attorney general recommended a constitutional amendment.

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