- Associated Press - Thursday, June 20, 2019

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - A Maine proposal to more swiftly compensate victims of property crimes has passed a key test in the Senate.

The Senate signed off Tuesday on a proposal to create a compensation fund for victims of the crimes. The sponsor, Democratic Sen. Nate Libby of Lewiston, says victims of property crimes must currently seek recourse through insurance claims and civil actions, which can be expensive and time consuming.

Libby wants to fund the program with a $5 or $10 assessment on people convicted of committing a crime. Senate Democrats say judges would also be able to order people who commit property crimes to reimburse the fund.

The proposal needs further approval in the Maine Senate and House of Representatives.

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