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States Look to Prisons for Ways to Save Money, Including Letting Some Inmates Go
FOXNews.com ^ | Saturday, January 10, 2009 | Associated Press

Posted on 01/10/2009 4:52:26 PM PST by metmom

NEW YORK — Their budgets in crisis, governors, legislators and prison officials across the nation are making or considering policy changes that will likely remove tens of thousands of offenders from prisons and parole supervision.

Collectively, the pending and proposed initiatives could add up to one of biggest shifts ever in corrections policy, putting into place cost-saving reforms that have struggled to win political support in the tough-on-crime climate of recent decades.

(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: corrections; earlyrelease; inmates; prisoners; prisons
Just what we need. More criminals on the streets.
1 posted on 01/10/2009 4:52:27 PM PST by metmom
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To: metmom

Why not just make tent prisons in the desert? I’m sure they are cheaper.


2 posted on 01/10/2009 4:56:02 PM PST by Tai_Chung
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To: metmom

It’s another fine example of government being unable to what it’s supposed to do because it’s too busy doing things it’s not supposed to do.


3 posted on 01/10/2009 4:57:54 PM PST by Brilliant
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To: metmom

They need to be selective but do people in jail for non violent crimes belong there to begin with?


4 posted on 01/10/2009 4:59:45 PM PST by CindyDawg
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To: metmom
Their budgets in crisis, governors, legislators and prison officials across the nation are making or considering policy changes that will likely remove tens of thousands of offenders from prisons and parole supervision.

I would have less problem with this if we made sure to house these offenders next door to these self-same governors, legislators and prison officials.

5 posted on 01/10/2009 5:00:15 PM PST by fhayek
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To: metmom

Well they won’t save any money except their own.The average criminal costs about 5 times more to society on the street vs locked up in prison.


6 posted on 01/10/2009 5:02:33 PM PST by Farmer Dean (168 grains of instant conflict resolution)
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To: metmom

This was inevitable. The explosion we saw in prison populations since the eighties was unsustainable. It couldn’t continue. They’ll let a few thousand out, and we’ll still have several times as many locked up as we ever did at any point before 1979 or so, whether you look at total prison populations or the per capita number of people we have in prison. What we saw happen since then was entirely unprecedented, a radical departure from anything we had done before. It did help reduce crime, but it was also incredibly expensive, and we were putting so many people in prison I can’t help but think we’ve put a lot in that aren’t such a threat to us that we really need to lock them up. I bet we can achieve the same good results while locking fewer people up if we are smart about how we use our limited prison space.


7 posted on 01/10/2009 5:06:10 PM PST by SmallGovRepub
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To: CindyDawg

I agree...I know for a fact that Georgia locked up kids for pot violations...small amounts and they were not violent.


8 posted on 01/10/2009 5:08:25 PM PST by bronxboy
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To: metmom
rotating door Pictures, Images and Photos
9 posted on 01/10/2009 5:09:10 PM PST by Snickering Hound
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To: metmom
Hopefully, any crimes committed by the prisoners released will only be directed against the politicians who are attempting to blackmail the taxpayers with this little stunt.

And that's all it is: blackmail. There's no reason at all why the money can't be cut somewhere else.

10 posted on 01/10/2009 5:09:22 PM PST by Psycho_Bunny (ALSO SPRACH ZEROTHUSTRA)
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To: metmom
Finally making sense. It's ridiculous to have a bunch of pot-heads in prison. Cut them loose and stop arresting people for smoking dope. Also, turn the illegals directly over to ICE. They have a program where you can immediately deport, and if the illegal comes back, he/she is sentenced to 20 years in the federal prison.

They should be scouring the county jails as well for illegals and pot-heads. Most states pay the counties to lock up people. Clear out the county jails of these buffoons and leave the violent career criminals and theives in the jails. Screw rehab. Unless someone wants to quit, they aren't going to. Most of them, in my limited experience, have no interest in quitting.

11 posted on 01/10/2009 5:18:57 PM PST by MovementConservative (Oregon Ducks 42, Oklahoma St. Cowboys 31)
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To: metmom

Ah, a great new batch of Dem Voters to put back on the rolls


12 posted on 01/10/2009 5:19:13 PM PST by acoulterfan
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To: metmom

I agree with the tent cities idea. It is totally acceptable according to international human rights standards, to use military style field conditions. It costs a fraction of brick prisons. It eliminates overcrowding. And ironically, it is a *reward* for better prisoners, *not* a punishment.

Prisoners who are troublesome stay in the brick prisons, but at much lower occupancy. The same with unhealthy prisoners, and those who have to appear in court frequently, or who need to be there for humanitarian reasons.

But much of the prison population goes out to the countryside. There they live with less noise, get fresh air and sunshine, and in some cases can do productive labor, like grow fresh vegetables to augment their food.

Much like with Indian casinos, States could make contracts with Indian tribes for prisoners to perform much needed improvements on Indian lands, such as environmental reclamation and infrastructure improvements. And in the process, some of the prison trustees can learn useful trades.


13 posted on 01/10/2009 5:19:39 PM PST by yefragetuwrabrumuy
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To: metmom
How about we simply take all the illegal aliens in prison and release them in Cape Horn or maybe the South Sandwich Islands?

That should solve the overcrowding problem.

14 posted on 01/10/2009 5:24:19 PM PST by Gritty (Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual - Michelle Obama)
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To: CindyDawg
They need to be selective but do people in jail for non violent crimes belong there to begin with?

Yes, if it's identity theft, habitual drunk driving, or property thefts. The pot-heads are more of a hazard to themselves. Also, stop returning people to jail for parole violations for failing UA's. Cut them lose and leave them be until they commit a new violent crime. Stop wasting resources on irresponsible people with no self control. Put away the truly violent.

15 posted on 01/10/2009 5:25:18 PM PST by MovementConservative (Oregon Ducks 42, Oklahoma St. Cowboys 31)
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To: metmom
Might as well merge all the states into one single entity.

States are spending too much money on universal healthcare schemes, global warming & "green jobs" baloney, in-state tuition for illegal aliens and they wonder why they're going broke.

I've concluded that there are too many stupid and apathetic people in this country, which is why I'm currently working on living and retiring overseas.

16 posted on 01/10/2009 5:25:39 PM PST by Extremely Extreme Extremist
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To: metmom

Well, gee, I just thot that one of the main reasons for government was to KEEP THE PEACE. What exactly IS it that they do? Besides schmoozing and driving limos and getting paid off by lobbyists?


17 posted on 01/10/2009 5:26:59 PM PST by bboop (obama, little o, not a Real God)
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To: SmallGovRepub

You are 100% on target. Glad to read a post by someone that has done a little homework on our prisons


18 posted on 01/10/2009 5:30:42 PM PST by katiedidit1
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To: Tai_Chung
Sheriff Joe Arpaio has the right idea and I would like to
find his total cost per person per day against state pens.
19 posted on 01/10/2009 5:33:12 PM PST by HuntsvilleTxVeteran (Obama, Change America will die for.)
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To: metmom

So, do the freed jailbirds even have a chance of getting a job in this economy? If not, who takes care of them? Do they get welfare?


20 posted on 01/10/2009 5:40:33 PM PST by CriticalJ
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To: CindyDawg

A policy where offenders could work on the outside while under house arrest could be ideal. Then they could remit most of their earnings in fines. I would only support this for non violent offenses, including DWI and drug offenses.


21 posted on 01/10/2009 5:47:26 PM PST by WheresMyBailout
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To: SmallGovRepub
I can’t help but think we’ve put a lot in that aren’t such a threat to us that we really need to lock them up.

They are now.

22 posted on 01/10/2009 5:53:05 PM PST by jude24
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To: metmom

Clearly the prison system is way too soft on the inmates.

Were the prison system like that of say 18th century France, or some muslin country, they would be just about empty in just a matter of years.


23 posted on 01/10/2009 5:53:36 PM PST by liliesgrandpa (Just out of curiosity, is there any possible GOP candidate that is too repugnant for you to support?)
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To: metmom

Take away the people’s guns, then turn the criminals loose. Worked for Britain, let’s try it here.


24 posted on 01/10/2009 5:58:59 PM PST by tvdog12345
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To: liliesgrandpa

Heck, just go back to the kinds of prisons we had in the first half or the 20th century - before the looney-libs got all mooshy-gushy about condition. The Sheriff Araipo model works.


25 posted on 01/10/2009 6:01:18 PM PST by ArmyTeach (You have a Republic, Madam, if you can keep it...)
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To: Brilliant

Wouldn’t putting the criminals to work be a better choice?
Worst case scenario, sell plasma. Save lives on the outside while making use of those on the inside.


26 posted on 01/10/2009 6:16:50 PM PST by tbw2 (Freeper sci-fi - "Humanity's Edge" - on amazon.com)
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To: CriticalJ
So, do the freed jailbirds even have a chance of getting a job in this economy? If not, who takes care of them? Do they get welfare?

They're less employable than most of the unemployed on the streets now. They do have skills. Selling drugs. Burglarizing homes. Holding up liquor stores. Vandalizing property. We'll get more of that as they seek ways to "make a living" with the skills they understand best.

27 posted on 01/10/2009 6:18:51 PM PST by Myrddin
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To: ArmyTeach

“The Sheriff Araipo model works.”

I’m not even going to click on your moniker to see if you are from Maricopa Co.

First of all its Arpaio and the man has cost this county more in suit damages than he has saved us from criminals.


28 posted on 01/10/2009 6:19:17 PM PST by sabe@q.com (Yes, I'm a SW freak!)
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To: marajade

How much in damages?


29 posted on 01/10/2009 6:25:29 PM PST by Balding_Eagle
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To: Balding_Eagle

do a search a ton in the millions in tax dollars


30 posted on 01/10/2009 6:53:22 PM PST by sabe@q.com (Yes, I'm a SW freak!)
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To: marajade

That’s what I thought, you’re just blowing bullshit around.


31 posted on 01/10/2009 6:54:41 PM PST by Balding_Eagle
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To: Myrddin

Exactly what I was thinking.


32 posted on 01/10/2009 6:56:42 PM PST by CriticalJ
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To: Balding_Eagle

http://www.november.org/stayinfo/breaking08/SheriffJoe.html

and that was over a year ago

guess again


33 posted on 01/10/2009 7:07:14 PM PST by sabe@q.com (Yes, I'm a SW freak!)
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To: metmom

Putting an automatic time limit of 2 years after an appeal for those with a death sentence will reduce costs and impact violent crimes, plus the reality factor will have a profound preventive impact on offenses leading to a death sentence.


34 posted on 01/10/2009 7:31:20 PM PST by hermgem (Will Olmr)
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To: metmom

Osama! Obama! You are one crazy Momma!


35 posted on 01/10/2009 7:37:40 PM PST by 2harddrive (...House a TOTAL Loss.....)
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To: CindyDawg
They need to be selective but do people in jail for non violent crimes belong there to begin with?

The thieves who stole my cars do.

36 posted on 01/10/2009 7:44:16 PM PST by sionnsar (Iran Azadi|5yst3m 0wn3d-it's N0t Y0ur5 (SONY)|http://trad-anglican.faithweb.com/|RCongressIn2Years)
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To: sionnsar

Do they? Would it not be better for them to be under supervision and be required to work and pay you back damages?


37 posted on 01/10/2009 8:03:01 PM PST by CindyDawg
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To: marajade

If the numbers are true and accurate (they come froma suspicious source) why do the voters keep returning him with overwhelming votes?


38 posted on 01/10/2009 8:10:36 PM PST by Balding_Eagle
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To: CindyDawg

The thieves who stole my car and other stuff got all three, jail time, forced to repay me for damages, and were placed under supervison after they got out.


39 posted on 01/10/2009 8:12:58 PM PST by Balding_Eagle
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To: CindyDawg
They need to be selective but do people in jail for non violent crimes belong there to begin with?

Not likely but I'll betcha dollars to donuts that those are not the ones that get released.

40 posted on 01/10/2009 8:12:59 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: MovementConservative

Getting rid of the illegals is a good first step.

There are other solutions to crime than jail. In the case of robbery or personal property issues, have the perp make restitution. The Old Testament had a rate of 4 times the value of the property, IIRC.

Having the criminal work to pay back the person he offended might just go a long way to making him realize what it’s like to be on the receiving end.

He also does not end up with a jail term on his record.


41 posted on 01/10/2009 8:16:22 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: CindyDawg
Do they? Would it not be better for them to be under supervision and be required to work and pay you back damages?

The recidivism rate of car thieves in this state and across the country is by far the highest of any crime. But yah, let's slap them on the wrist and let them go. Do it again.

After all, they get away with it most of the time. Maybe they can pay me back with the proceeds from a couple of other heists.

42 posted on 01/10/2009 8:17:08 PM PST by sionnsar (Iran Azadi|5yst3m 0wn3d-it's N0t Y0ur5 (SONY)|http://trad-anglican.faithweb.com/|RCongressIn2Years)
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To: metmom

What altitude are they letting them go at?


43 posted on 01/10/2009 10:25:09 PM PST by americanophile
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To: americanophile

FOTFL. Not high enough....


44 posted on 01/10/2009 10:29:30 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: americanophile

The governor of WA state has recommended deportation as a way of reducing prison costs. I’m not sure if she is serious, since she is being sued by three unions for the proposed budget cuts and I’m pretty sure that she knew that she would be sued. I think that she is counting on the courts ordering a tax increase to pay for the budget shortfall.


45 posted on 01/10/2009 10:30:02 PM PST by Eva (CHANGE- the post modern euphemism for Marxist revolution.)
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To: sionnsar
HMM. Well maybe that needs to be looked at. My concern is DUIs being released.

I don't think it's a slap to the hand for anyone if done right though. To me, it's better for society to have a person working and taking care of their family and re-paying victims than being locked up to lay around and play basketball, while the tax payer foots the bill.

46 posted on 01/11/2009 6:12:58 AM PST by CindyDawg
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To: CindyDawg
I think the issue is not so much violent vs. non-violent but in terms of victims and (noting your concern I have to add) risk.

The elderly couple bilked out of their life savings haven't been subjected to violence but are hurt badly nonetheless.

The DUIs are probably mostly (I have no idea, just guessing) without victims, though when they have them the damage is probably severe. (We had a case here a few years back where a woman with a string of priors was out DUI again, and struck a woman out walking with her husband, killing the walker instantly.) So I would put this in the high risk category.

47 posted on 01/11/2009 2:32:46 PM PST by sionnsar (Iran Azadi|5yst3m 0wn3d-it's N0t Y0ur5 (SONY)|http://trad-anglican.faithweb.com/|RCongressIn2Years)
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