Legislation working its way through the Illinois House would allow some prison inmates over the age of 50 to be released early.
Supporters say it would reduce overcrowding and save money because older prisoners can cost more to house.
The Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises newspapers reports that the measure would apply to inmates who have served more than 25 years of their sentence.
A committee passed the measure Tuesday and sent it to the full House.
Opponents told committee members the proposal would violate the rights of crime victims.
Mary Kay Mace is the mother of a student killed in a mass shooting at Northern Illinois University in 2008.
She told the committee the idea was traumatizing to victims and their families.