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Fri Aug 23, 2013, 07:28 PM

(NYC) City’s Annual Cost Per Inmate Is $168,000, Study Finds

Source: NY Times

By MARC SANTORA

New York City is an expensive place to live for just about everyone, including prisoners.

The city paid $167,731 to feed, house and guard each inmate last year, according to a study the Independent Budget Office released this week.

“It is troubling in both human terms and financial terms,” Doug Turetsky, the chief of staff for the budget office, said on Friday. With 12,287 inmates shuffling through city jails last year, he said, “it is a significant cost to the city.”

Mr. Turetsky added that he was not aware of any previous studies that broke down the cost per inmate in the jails, but there have been national studies. And by nearly any measure, New York City spends more than every other state or city.

FULL story at link.


Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/24/nyregion/citys-annual-cost-per-inmate-is-nearly-168000-study-says.html?partner=EXCITE&ei=5043&_r=0

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Reply (NYC) City’s Annual Cost Per Inmate Is $168,000, Study Finds (Original post)
Omaha Steve Aug 2013 OP
valerief Aug 2013 #1
niyad Aug 2013 #3
alcibiades_mystery Aug 2013 #9
niyad Aug 2013 #12
alcibiades_mystery Aug 2013 #13
niyad Aug 2013 #16
alcibiades_mystery Aug 2013 #17
freshwest Aug 2013 #20
niyad Aug 2013 #2
valerief Aug 2013 #4
alcibiades_mystery Aug 2013 #10
valerief Aug 2013 #5
Roland99 Aug 2013 #6
Earth_First Aug 2013 #7
OffWithTheirHeads Aug 2013 #8
Mosby Aug 2013 #11
tom_kelly Aug 2013 #14
DeSwiss Aug 2013 #15
madrchsod Aug 2013 #18
Fire Walk With Me Aug 2013 #19
snot Aug 2013 #21
tclambert Aug 2013 #22
Heywood J Aug 2013 #23
Pterodactyl Aug 2013 #24
Supersedeas Aug 2013 #25
Niceguy1 Aug 2013 #26

Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 07:35 PM

1. For-profit prisons, perchance? nt

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Response to valerief (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 07:37 PM

3. great minds. . .

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Response to valerief (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 09:23 PM

9. No

Not in New York City.

Indeed, there are not "prisons" in NYC - there are jails, where inmates are housed pre-trial or up to 1 year. None of these is for-profit or private. There is the main jail for the entire city ("Rikers Island") plus "houses of detention" for each city borough.

Post-conviction or longer than 1 year sentences are served "upstate" at any of the archipelago of state prisons. None of those are private either, in New York State.

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #9)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 10:38 PM

12. so what is the explanation for why the per inmate cost is so damned high--certainly isn't about

high security or anything.

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Response to niyad (Reply #12)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 11:04 PM

13. I have an idea about how the number cashes out: it has everything to do with public, not private

There are no private or for-profit prisons in New York City or State.

If inmate costs include legacy pensions for public sector employees (including corrections officers) that might be how it got so high. In other words, I suspect the study simply lumped together the funds paid for labor (including pensions and benefits), added that to material and facilities costs, and then divided that by inmate. So, it is probably deceptive, since it is not really cost per inmate, as many pension-receiving CO's likely retired long before the current crop of 12,000 plus inmates cycled through. The $168,000 number is, in other words, a fake. But it's a fake with a purpose: to continue the despicable neoliberal assault on public sector pensions.

From the article: "The budget office said 83 percent of the expense per prisoner came from wages, benefits for staff and pension costs."

This is a prelude to attacking NYC public sector pensions. Bet on that.

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #13)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 11:32 PM

16. sadly, you are most likely correct. the other thing mentioned in the article was the ratio of

guards to prisoners--1 guard for every two prisoners.

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Response to niyad (Reply #16)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 11:48 PM

17. The guard to prisoner ratio turned hell-houses into relatively safe institutions

I spent two nights in Queens Central Booking in the early 90's: there were four robbery/fights in my holding pen during that time. I was there with two friends, so we had numbers, and we let people know it. Otherwise, we'd have gotten jumped, too. Nobody did shit - the guards were like hockey referees: wait until it goes to ground, then wait some more. Rikers was worse back then, a nightmare. Everybody was strapped with knives and razors. Everybody fought. Two friends did a few months in the 16-21 section: a gladiator school for kids, the slicing farm. The jails were a shit storm. The guard prisoner ratio changed that. It's needed. They are also decent careers for working class people from the City. Guy who lived next door to my best friend growing up was a CO on the Island: decent house in a working class neighborhood for him and his family (wife was a nurse at Flushing Hospital). I don't begrudge jail staff their wages or pensions. This report is shit, and meant to stir up resentment. NYC opted for safe jails and good, public sector guard and staff unions.

That costs money.

People need to deal with that.

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #17)

Sat Aug 24, 2013, 01:56 AM

20. TY. I've found all these media stories serve the privatization forces. Hate this stuff.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 07:36 PM

2. you have GOT to be kidding me with this statement:


Mr. Turetsky added that he was not aware of any previous studies that broke down the cost per inmate in the jails, but there have been national studies

seriously, turetsky, you expect us to believe that it has NEVER occurred to ANYONE in the govt in NYC to do a cost breakdown per prisoner? do you really think we are all that stupid? and, if the city has never done this, the question would be WHY??? you know cost per pupil, all sorts of per person breakdowns, but never once thought to do it for prisoners?

so, is the nyc prison system public or private?

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Response to niyad (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 07:43 PM

4. We're not allowed to know. National security and freedumbs, ya know. nt

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Response to niyad (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 09:32 PM

10. There is no "New York City prison system"

There are jails in New York City, which hold people prior to and during trial, and hold convicted inmates with sentences shorter than 1 year. These are all public.

People who have been convicted of a crime and sentenced to longer than 1 year are usually sent to a state prison "upstate" (there are only three correctional facilities located in NYC: two minimum security facilities and a medium, but they are all very small. No state prisons in New York State are private or for-profit. They are all run by the New York State Department of Corrections, a state governmental agency.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 07:45 PM

5. Of course, the slave labor, er, prisoners, are a cheap resource for corporations, er, persons.

You know, real persons. The only ones who matter.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 08:03 PM

6. No wonder RepubliCONs want to privatize the prison system

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 08:15 PM

7. Of course in Arpio's prisons in Arizona...

The annual cost is $22,650 with an inmate food serving cost of $0.40 per inmate which live in sweltering tent cities in the Arizona temperature extremes.

Surely there is some sort of medium in which violent criminals can be sentenced in a not for profit situation...and the cost savings to taxpayers begins with eliminating the war on drugs and releasing those sentenced to non violent drug related offenses and into treatment programs costing much , much less...

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 08:41 PM

8. And if most of the folks in the prisons could make 20% of that cost

at a real job that paid them enough to live on, they wouldn't be there.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 09:56 PM

11. This sort of thing happens in business as well

sales drop and labor metrics aren't kept in balance.

In this situation jail population dropped significantly over time but labor didn't for various reasons.

There probably was no mechanism to transfer staff or offer early retirement.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 11:05 PM

14. Is Bloomberg $ Invested in this?

It wouldn't surprise me if he, or buddies of his are making profit off this. Stop and frisk would only add to the population.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2013, 11:13 PM

15. It would have been cheaper to send them to NYU.

- Humans are idiots.

K&R

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sat Aug 24, 2013, 12:32 AM

18. cook county (chicago) has a breakdown on the website

the federal government restricts cook county to 10,000 inmates at any time. inmates over that number are sent to other counties. the daily rate per inmate is 143 a day. i didn't look for la`s numbers.

given the fact that new york has a larger population that figure doesn't sound out of line.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sat Aug 24, 2013, 01:50 AM

19. That money is going to someone, somewhere. n/t

 

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sat Aug 24, 2013, 03:02 AM

21. How could we NOT spend that amount better, differently?

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sat Aug 24, 2013, 07:46 AM

22. Dude! Pay me $150,000/yr. and I'll give up my life of crime.

You come out $18K ahead.

(P.S. Dear NSA, I was kidding about my life of crime. Just a joke. OK? OK?)

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sat Aug 24, 2013, 10:15 AM

23. At that rate,

you could parole all but the worst and pay them a third of that to perform jobs around the city... Hell, you could pay them to do nothing and still come out ahead.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sat Aug 24, 2013, 12:15 PM

24. With average for states at $31,000 NYC is obviously screwing this up.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Mon Aug 26, 2013, 08:15 PM

25. that gives some perspective on a sentence of life without parole

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Mon Aug 26, 2013, 08:35 PM

26. they nees to send the deot heads to other states

And see how it is done.

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