( – promoted by Colorado Pols)
The Pew Center on the States has recently released their report “One in 31: The Long Reach of American Corrections.” This is an updated report on last years report revealing a staggering social expense to our current corrections system.
Here are some relevant statistics for Colorado:
* 1 in 29 adults is under correctional control (compared with 1 in 102 adults in 1982).
* Colorado spent $625 Million on corrections (nearly twice spending on higher ed)
* By end of 2007, 30% of correctional population was in prison or jail (in 1982 that figure was 26%)
* Colorado has 77,635 people in probation (238 federal)
* Colorado has 11,086 people on parole (954 federal)
* Colorado has 22,666 people in prison (1,736 federal)
* Colorado has 13,871 people in jail
* For every $1 Colorado spent on prisons in 2008, it spent $0.15 on probation and parole.
* 1 day of prison costs ($76.51) = 6 days of parole or 21 days of probation.
* Colorado ranks 15th highest prison / corrections population among the 50 states
You can download the full report by visiting www.pewcenteronthestates.org/publicsafety.
In a balanced budget state, this means every dollar spent on corrections is a dollar NOT spent on K12, higher ed, economic development, transportation, health care, senior homestead exemption, etc.
We can not afford to ignore sentencing reform in this era of staggering budget shortfalls. We are spending an extraordinary amount of money incarcerating primarily non-violent offenders (74%).