About 335 workers, representing one-sixth of the local government work force, lost their jobs, according to Mayor Dana Redd. It was worst in the public safety departments, where nearly half the police force and close to one-third of the city's firefighters were laid off.
[Back then, this sort of thing ended with Kenneth McDuff kidnapping, raping and executing several young adults after being released on parole for capital murder.]
[This message was edited by JB on 01-18-11 at .]
While the rest of state government is taking big hits in Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's budget proposal, prisons and public safety get new hires and some pay hikes.
The governor wants to hire 306 new detention officers over the next three years, at a first-year cost of $8.4 million, and provide an additional $55.2 million in capital funding, most of it through bonding, for maintenance and repair at the state Department of Corrections' 10 prison complexes.
Corrections Director Chuck Ryan said the agency is trying to rebuild after the state eliminated more than 500 positions in 2006.
"That led to increased assaults against staff by inmates" and more inmate violence, he said. "It was a safety issue."
Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to transfer state inmates to county jails faces a simple obstacle: Many jails don't have the space to hold them.
Just as the state has struggled with prison overcrowding, some counties have had their own problems keeping inmates locked up. Statewide, tens of thousands of inmates are released early from county jails each year because of space constraints.
Jail crowding was on the minds of many sheriffs when Brown announced in his budget proposal last week his plan to give them responsibility for more than 40,000 lower-level offenders and parole violators.
"We don't have the space," said Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, who once ran the county's two jails. "The Main Jail is full or over-full every day."
What's that old saying about those who refuse to learn from the past are destined to repeat it?
The scary thing is...if education is the key to ending some of this - closing 4 colleges of which 3 are in the same part of the state...
Can we play "let's make a criminal?"
Lisa L. Peterson
Nolan County Attorney
HB 1, the Texas House's filed version of our 2012-2013 budget, contains close to a billion dollars in cuts for the next 2 years. Virtually all alternatives to incarceration, treatment, education, and reentry programs have been slashed or eliminated. One unit is set to close, and the building budget was zeroed-out. (And this does not include the cuts to TYC and juvenil probation).
Many of us were prosecuting in courts in the 1980's -- when criminals were laughing at the short and meaningless sentences, and there were no viable and tested alternatives. The Texas legislature did great work in digging us out of that hole, building up capacity, and creating a good menu of evidence-based alternatives to incarceration that can work if funded.
Now it is all in danger. Do away with most or all of the diversions, SAFP beds, and alternative placements can save some money in the short run, to be sure. but it can spell disaster for the system that is working. A disaster for the safety of Texans.
Don't Mess with Texas Public Safety.
Show me the money.
Texas Parole Rates at 20-Year Highs
The reporter didn't bother with an historical perspective, but when I did a little digging I had to go back all the way to 1993 to find a parole rate this high. BPP stats show the release rate in 1993 was 39% (for the year), and the rate in 1992 was 58%.
What's old is new again, my friends.
The Statesman article makes it sound like most all of the increase in parolees are guys who have served almost all of their sentence, and they want to keep a leash on them for awhile when the do get out, or are really old, and now harmless sex offenders who have spent many years behind bars.
I hate to sound cynical, but I think the reporter was taken for a ride.
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