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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 202935 Find in a Library
Title: Cutting Correctly: New Prison Policies for Times of Fiscal Crisis
Corporate Author: Ctr on Juvenile and Criminal Justice
United States of America
Date Published: 2001
Page Count: 35
Sponsoring Agency: Ctr on Juvenile and Criminal Justice
San Francisco, CA 94103
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America

Ctr on Juvenile and Criminal Justice
40 Boardman Place
San Francisco, CA 94103
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Document (Online)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper examines how various States under budget crises compounded by 25 years of criminal justice policies that have swelled the number of incarcerated prisoners are adopting policies and taking action to reduce corrections costs.
Abstract: The analysis notes that 1 out of every 14 general fund dollars spent in 2000 was spent on prisons. Although State governments may have believed they could afford this expense during the boom years of the 1990's, State budgets are now feeling the weight of the recent recession and the revenue loss associated with the September 11th terrorist attacks. Data from the National Association of Budget Officer's Fiscal Survey of States projects a $40-billion shortfall for States in fiscal year 2002. After examining the ways in which various States have trimmed corrections costs in the area of prisons, this paper identifies three major categories of reforms that merit consideration when deciding on ways to reduce State prison population pressures and correctional costs. One reform is to repeal mandatory sentencing laws and restore judge's discretion to determine which offenders warrant long prison sentences and which can be safely and effectively supervised and treated in the communities where they reside. A second promising reform is to establish new structures for reviewing and revising State sentencing policies and guiding judges toward the most efficient and effective use of the available correctional options. The third promising reform is the creation of a new system of post-prison responsibilities and supports for offenders after their release from prison, a system that will reduce the rate of recidivism. Suggestions for implementing these three general types of reform are offered. 99 notes
Main Term(s): Corrections policies
Index Term(s): Alternatives to institutionalization; Community-based corrections (adult); Corrections costs; Cutback management; Sentencing/Sanctions; State correctional facilities
Note: Downloaded November 7, 2003.
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