A plan to overhaul the Kentucky corrections system and reduce costs has been approved by the House and was okayed yesterday by the Senate Judiciary Committee. Passage is seen likely next week, says the Louisville Courier-Journal. The measure is aimed at keeping low-level offenders out of prison by providing treatment for drug abuse and supervision in the community.
The plan could save as much as $42 million per year — roughly half of which would be reinvested in programs to keep some offenders out of prison, supervise them more closely in their communities, and provide drug and alcohol treatment. Kentucky has about 20,500 inmates at a cost of about $21,700 a year per inmate. It costs about $3,000 a year to supervise offenders in the community and provide treatment. Sen. Jerry Rhoads, who has served in the Senate since 2003, said the measure was the most significant legislation considered during his tenure.