Home Archives September 2008 Costs spiral for prison measures

Costs spiral for prison measures

| Print |  Email
Monday, September 01, 2008

STATEWIDE A state analysis of the two criminal justice measures competing for votes this November estimates prison costs to be even higher than anticipated. The forecast predicts that the cheaper of the two alternatives, Measure 57, would cost $1.1 billion over the next decade, while the more costly version, Measure 61, would cost up to $2.2 billion.

The main difference between the price tags is the cost of building prisons. Measure 57 would require about $500 million for borrowing money to build prisons and paying that money back over 25 years, with interest. Measure 61 would put up to four times as much money, or $2 billion over, into building new prisons, according to the state analysis.

Because neither identifies a funding source, the measures would be funded through Oregon’s general fund. That is likely to be the point of contention as the election approaches, because Oregon already spends a larger percentage of its general fund on corrections than any other state, according to a February 2008 report by Pew’s Center on the States.

Oregon expanded its prison system substantially in the 1990s, building new prisons in remote locations from Ontario to Lakeview to Madras. The prisons were often touted as drivers of rural economic development, but several studies have disproved that claim (see “Prisontown Myth” in the April 2008 issue of Oregon Business).

The state’s 13,600 inmates are housed in 14 facilities. The Oregon Department of Corrections has plans for prisons in White City and Junction City, but will have to adjust for thousands of new inmates if either measure passes. If both pass, the one with the most votes will become law.

BEN JACKLET


Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

Speeding up science

News
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
02.25.14 Thumbnail MedwasteBY JOE ROJAS-BURKE | OB BLOGGER

The medical research enterprise wastes tens of billions of dollars a year on irrelevant studies. It’s time to fix it.


Read more...

Downtime with Ron Green

March 2014
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY

Ron Green became president and CEO of Oregon Pacific Bank in August 2013.


Read more...

Video: Kickstarting Oregon business

News
Thursday, March 27, 2014
02.04.14 Thumbnail VideoBY JESSICA RIDGWAY | OB WEB EDITOR

Watch this OB Original Video about three Oregon companies and how crowd-funding "kickstarted" their business ideas.


Read more...

The solution to youth unemployment

News
Thursday, February 27, 2014
02.27.14 Thumbnail TeenworkBY ERIC FRUITS

Because they have little chance of working for someone else, today’s teens need to be entrepreneurs. But, first, we must teach our teens that entrepreneurship starts small.


Read more...

How to handle the unexpected

Contributed Blogs
Friday, March 28, 2014
03.28.14 thumb disasterBY TOM COX | OB BLOGGER

The next mysterious (or disastrous) event could be one that you or your team might suddenly need to respond to, probably under intense scrutiny.


Read more...

Buy the book

News
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
2 03.25.14 thumb bookshopBY VIVIAN MCINERNY | OB BLOGGER

Oregon is home not only to many fine writers but also several accomplished small publishers.


Read more...

Fuel's gold

March 2014
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
BY SOPHIA BENNETT

The coastal town of Coos Bay appears poised to land every economic development director’s dream: a single employer that will bring hundreds of family-wage jobs and millions in tax revenue. 


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS