Annual Cost of Federal Prisons: More Than $28,000 Per Inmate


The annual cost of keeping someone imprisoned in a federal facility during the last fiscal year was $28,284.16, says a new compilation issued by the federal court system. The annual cost of probation supervision was $3,938.35. The figures work out to a daily cost of $77.49 for incarceration and $10.79 for supervised release. As of last month, the federal prison system’s population was nearly 216,000, about 38,000 of whom were in private or contract facilities.

In its budget proposal now pending in Congress, the U.S. Bureau of Prisons projected that if current trends continue, its prisoner population would near 248,000 by fiscal year 2018. The court system report listed the daily cost of holding a criminal defendant in pretrial detention last year as $70.56, and the daily cost of pretrial supervision as $6.62.

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