Federal, state and local governments in the United States spent $61 billion in fiscal year 1988 for civil and criminal justice, an increase of 34 percent since 1985, according to a report recently issued by the U.S. Department of Justice's Bureau of Justice Statistics. The report includes these figures related to corrections:
Three cents of every government dollar spent in 1988 was for justice activities; a penny went for corrections.
Since 1979, state government spending for building prisons increased 593 percent, that's 2.6 times faster than spending to operate correctional institutions. State governments spent 3.5 percent of their dollars for corrections. That percentage includes building and operating prisons and running probation and parole programs.
In October 1988, the nation's civil and criminal justice system employed 1.6 million people, with a payroll for the month of $3.7 billion.
Single copies of the report, "Justice Expenditure and Employment, 1988, may be obtained from the National Criminal Justice Reference Service, Box 6000, Rockville, MD 20850.
Reprinted from Corrections Today
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