2013 News Releases

Dale L. Borchert, Chairman

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For More Information Contact:
Catherine F. Durland
(845) 486-2103

June 6, 2013        Print version

Legislature's Public Safety Committee Passes Bond for Next Phase of Jail Facility
Receives Bipartisan Support, Unanimously Approved

Poughkeepsie... “The Legislature took an important step forward today to address a long standing issue that has cost the county millions of dollars. I am pleased to have the Legislature with bipartisan support stand with the County Executive, Sheriff and District Attorney in this important effort to strengthen our Criminal Justice System in Dutchess County,” said Chairman of the Legislature Rob Rolison (R-City/Town Poughkeepsie) following the Public Safety Committee vote to support the Project Definition phase for a new transition center by authorizing legislation for a $1.2 million bond.

The County’s current jail facility does not have enough space to house the County’s inmate population, requiring nearly 200 individuals to be housed in out-of-county facilities each day, at an exorbitant cost to taxpayers. The bond resolution authorizing $1.2 million in funding will enable the County to receive functional design concepts for a comprehensive, state-of-the-art criminal justice facility, including the number of beds and types of programming needed to address this broken component within the County’s Criminal Justice System.

Each year, the number of inmates housed out has steadily climbed.  In 2012, $8 million was spent and current projections show that by 2017, total housing costs would exceed $9.3 million. The Dutchess County Criminal Justice Council advised in its 2012 Criminal Justice System Needs Assessment report that the County could achieve significant savings and expand its successful Alternative to Incarceration (ATI) programs to drive down recidivism if a new “transition center” was constructed.  Those findings, including the projected savings, were recently validated by industry experts RicciGreene Associates.

The bond resolution will also enable the County to suspend housing out its inmates and instead place them in temporary housing.   This will provide the County immediate savings of a least $2 million a year as planning and design elements are considered. Inmates in the temporary housing will have the opportunity to participate in the ATI programs here in Dutchess County that they are currently unable to access in out-of-county facilities.

The legislation will be considered by the full Legislature at its Board Meeting on Monday, June 10th at 7 PM in the Legislature Chambers of the County Office Building.