What the Hartford Courant calls “significant changes” in the Connecticut Department of Corrections budget pales in comparison to the money the state could save by reforming its drug laws. Among Rell’s many slash and burn proposals would be cuts to inmate medical services. Yet, such action would only save twenty-two million dollars over the next two years. Sounds like a lot of money, but consider this:
- This report says the state spent $44,165 per year per inmate in 2006, an amount which has likely increased since then.
- Almost 20% of all criminal offenses in CT are drug offenses, which is over 3,800 inmates.
Doing the math, that’s an estimated 168 million dollars annually. Yet, Rell fixates on cutting services at a variety of agencies.