From Gov. Cuomo’s Budget….Right-size Prison System.

Read the entire budget @;

Right-size Prison System.
The prison population is projected to remain steady in 2011-
12, after a decline of nearly 15,000, or more than 20 percent, over the past 11 years.
Despite the efforts of the Department of Correctional Services to consolidate and achieve
savings, the system continues to maintain more facilities than are necessary to house
the State’s prison population safely. With the closure of only five small facilities during
the past several years, excess capacity remains. Total capacity in medium and minimum
general confinement facilities is approximately 36,400, of which at least 3,500 beds are
not needed. The transfer of inmates into facilities that operate the most efficiently and
offer more rehabilitative services is expected to yield significant recurring savings and
eliminate most of the excess capacity. The closures will be undertaken after a task force
created by Executive Order makes recommendations regarding specific facilities to be
closed; and economic development assistance will be provided to communities where a
closure occurs. The Budget also proposes to eliminate the 12-month statutory
notification before closing a facility to allow closures as soon as practicable after the
task force has made its recommendations. (2011-12 Value: $72 million; 2012-13 Value:
$112 million)
• Reduce Central Management Staff.
The central management staff of the prison system
will be reduced by 10 percent to reflect reductions associated with the right-sizing of the
system. (2011-12 Value: $5 million; 2012-13 Value: $5 million)
• Create the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision.
The Department
of Correctional Services and the Division of Parole will merge into a single agency, with a
mandate to seamlessly blend operations to strengthen the focus on re-entry. The combined
entity will coordinate its efforts throughout the period of incarceration and better connect
programming both inside and outside the prisons, thereby enhancing the prospects of
offenders successfully returning to their home communities.
The Parole Board will continue as an independent body, but housed within and receiving administrative support from the new agency. (2011-12 Value: $6 million; 2012-13 Value: $8 million)
Reduce Parole Board Membership. Consistent adoption of laws granting the courts authority to fix specific terms of incarceration for violent and drug-related offenses has significantly reduced the need for Parole Board hearings. Hearings are down 45 percent since 1995, allowing the elimination of six of the 19 Board members. (2011-12 Value:
$508,000; 2012-13 Value: $763,000

• Merge Criminal Justice Agencies. The operations of the Office for the Prevention of
Domestic Violence, the Office of Victim Services, and the State Commission of Correction
will merge with the Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS). Similar to the merger
of the Division of Probation and Correctional Alternatives into DCJS last year, the
important missions of these agencies will be preserved and enhanced as specialized
offices within DCJS. DCJS already provides administrative support to these smaller
agencies, and a full merger offers a more efficient, goal-oriented and cost-effective
environment for the delivery of programs and services for which these agencies are
responsible. The merger will also improve coordination of policies and programs.
(2011-12 Value: $477,000; 2012-13 Value: $477,000)
• Ten Percent General Fund State Operations Reduction. The Executive Budget will
decrease General Fund spending for State agency operations by 10 percent through a
redesign effort focused on rightsizing government, increasing efficiencies, as well as by
reducing workforce spending, including continued suspension of State Police training
classes. Governor Cuomo intends to partner with State employee labor unions to achieve
these workforce savings; if negotiations are not successful, significant layoffs are likely.
(2011-12 Value: $323 million; 2012-13 Value: $323 million)

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1 Response to From Gov. Cuomo’s Budget….Right-size Prison System.

  1. Sharon Ramos says:

    I applaud the govenor for his stance and views on revamping the overcrowding population in the New York prisons. What is the govenors views on passing the good time “merit time bill” which has been proposed by so many?

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