Plan to Release Prisoners Early and Save Money
A plan to release 5,000 prisoners to help make up for a projected 2.6 billion dollar budget shortfall is being discussed by lawmakers.
The plan was developed after the Florida Department of Corrections was asked to draft a budget that was 10 percent smaller. That's a cut of 224 million dollars from their budget.
The suggestions offered include cuts to drug abuse programs, education programs, and closing offices.
The state could save 11 million dollars by closing three prisons, but they didn't say which ones. That move could mean layoffs for correctional officers.
But with Florida entering an election year, and the governor fighting for votes, releasing prisoners and laying off correctional officers would not be terribly popular.
Granting early release to prisoners who served 85 percent of their sentences would be the biggest money saver.
The state could save 117 million dollars by letting those prisoners out 90 days early.
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