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  • Is this a Conservative Issue?

    Honestly, I would like to know the opinion of the more fiscally conservative members of this site, specifically CO's, and other LEO's.

    http://iowaindependent.com/22023/con...f-iowa-prisons

    Conservative group calls for privatization of Iowa prisons

    Iowa should privatize its prison system in order to alleviate budget problems, a conservative watchdog group said Monday.

    Ed Failor Jr., president of Iowans for Tax Relief, said the privatization of Iowa’s prisons would result in many positive benefits, from making communities safer to minimizing inefficiencies. But the biggest benefit would be cost savings, he said.

    “Iowa taxpayers would save tens of millions of dollars from the sale and operation of private prisons,” Failor said. “The current budget situation requires lawmakers to make real changes to state government, and selling the state prison system is part of the solution to moving Iowa forward.”

    Failor points to Arizona, where lawmakers project privatizing prisons could save their state more than $100 million in the corrections budget, and calls on Iowa to consider a similar move.

    “Today, there are over 9,000 inmates in Iowa prisons, and the average annual cost per prisoner is approximately $30,000,” Failor said. “Iowa taxpayers spend over $265 million on state prisons, and the average cost per prisoner increases each year.”

    Privatizing state functions is an idea getting serious consideration around the country, as state’s grapple with an historic economic downturn that has decimated their budgets. In Iowa, Gov. Chet Culver recently announced a 10-percent cut to the state budget in order to overcome a more than $400 million deficit.

    Not everyone is sold on the benefits of privatizing prisons.

    A U.S. Department of Justice study found that the cost-savings promised by private prisons “have simply not materialized.”The study concluded that rather than the projected 20-percent savings, the average saving from privatization was only about 1 percent, and most of that was achieved through lower labor costs.

    Opponents of privatization also express worry that the quest for higher profits will result in lower staff levels and training at private facilities and could lead to increases in incidences of violence and escapes.

    A federal study by the Bureau of Justice Statistics found Iowa ranked second-lowest nationally in per-capita spending on corrections. The state spent $121 per person, lower than every state but North Dakota, which spends $116 per person. The national average was $210.
    What is Perseverance?
    -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
    -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
    -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


    BOP - BPA - ICE

  • #2
    I am for privatization wherever it can work. If it can work for prisons, prisoner transport; so be it. The less government, the better.
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    • #3
      In general, privatization of government services of any kind is something championed by conservatives.

      Unfortunately, the accounts I have heard and read about the consequences of privatization of prisons are not favorable, and there are issues about what peace officer powers the state can or should cede to privately-employed personnel.
      Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley
      Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity. -- Albert Einstein

      Comment


      • #4
        A U.S. Department of Justice study found that the cost-savings promised by private prisons “have simply not materialized.”The study concluded that rather than the projected 20-percent savings, the average saving from privatization was only about 1 percent, and most of that was achieved through lower labor costs.

        Opponents of privatization also express worry that the quest for higher profits will result in lower staff levels and training at private facilities and could lead to increases in incidences of violence and escapes.
        Once again, the private sector is found to be inferior to the government.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by 1042 Trooper View Post
          I am for privatization wherever it can work. If it can work for prisons, prisoner transport; so be it. The less government, the better.
          I agree with this. There are legit roles for government and even though I'm considering Corrections (among other lines of work in LE), Corrections is definitely an area where the private sector can step in and usually will reduce what the government was spending without reducing the quality of work. I don't know this by experience at all, simply in theory as it has worked with other outlets. For example and one I am familar with, contracting security firms for Force Protection on Military bases, it cost the government less to maintain the contract, than to enlist, train, and retain more MPs (whatever branch) for that job (plus it opens up MPs for OCONUS work and deployments).

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          • #6
            I always pause when I consider the notion of Public Safety going to the lowest bidder.
            ...hunter of the shadows is rising...

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            • #7
              In states where mandatory standards and practices are in place, private corretional facilities provide a very high level of service for good cost savings. In states where no such standards exist, you often get something... less.

              In the end, I'm definately in favor of privatization for those functions that are not absolutely reserved for the government.
              Originally posted by kontemplerande
              Without Germany, you would not have won World War 2.

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              • #8
                Once again, the private sector is found to be inferior to the government.
                the average saving from privatization was only about 1 percent, and most of that was achieved through lower labor costs.
                1% less is still less. I guess you mean the private sector is only 1% better than the government.

                What does that work out to with million dollar contracts anyway?...

                M-11
                “All men dream...... But not equally..
                Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find it is vanity;
                but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men,
                for they act their dreams with open eyes to make it possible.....”

                TE Lawrence

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by DirtSailor View Post
                  I agree with this. There are legit roles for government and even though I'm considering Corrections (among other lines of work in LE), Corrections is definitely an area where the private sector can step in and usually will reduce what the government was spending without reducing the quality of work. I don't know this by experience at all, simply in theory as it has worked with other outlets. For example and one I am familar with, contracting security firms for Force Protection on Military bases, it cost the government less to maintain the contract, than to enlist, train, and retain more MPs (whatever branch) for that job (plus it opens up MPs for OCONUS work and deployments).
                  Contracting security firms for force protection is different than corrections by far. One of the biggest issues with corrections is that governments are required to have certain programs for inmates that a private company might see as being too much a waste of money/resources.

                  While the cost of these programs is not cheap, the overall goal of corrections is rehabilitation since the grand majority of offenders will be released eventually. It would be for the benefit of society if these people came out of prison better than when they entered.

                  Another issue is the treatment of mental illness for inmates. A lot of inmates suffer from some form of mental illness, and I am skeptical about the treatment that those inmates would receive if a private company was left in charge of budgeting for the treatment.

                  One of my main concerns with private prisons has to do with the morale and the treatment of the workforce. Not only are employees in these prisons generally paid far less than in state owned prisons, but they have far worse benefits, a higher inmate to staff ratio (possibly creating more dangerous work environs), and many have sub par training.

                  Don't get me wrong, I am not saying all private prisons are like that. However, the more regulation and control that a state has over private prisons, the less cost savings that will occur. Also since the overall goal is profit, what would stop a private company from doing the bare minimum in terms of staffing levels, programs, etc? While the bare minimum would be legal, it is hardly conducive to a safe and productive environment for staff or inmates.
                  Last edited by TheKansan; 11-11-2009, 12:57 PM.
                  What is Perseverance?
                  -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
                  -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
                  -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


                  BOP - BPA - ICE

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by SRT936 View Post
                    In states where mandatory standards and practices are in place, private corretional facilities provide a very high level of service for good cost savings. In states where no such standards exist, you often get something... less.

                    In the end, I'm definately in favor of privatization for those functions that are not absolutely reserved for the government.
                    I don't know if you want an avatar that says you are a right wing extremist srt!

                    Statement by U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on the Threat of Right-Wing Extremism

                    http://www.dhs.gov/ynews/releases/pr_1239817562001.shtm

                    and

                    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/0..._n_186834.html
                    Last edited by livestrong6; 11-11-2009, 01:11 PM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by livestrong6 View Post
                      I don't know if you want an avatar that says you are a right wing extremist srt!
                      Maybe he is starved for attention.
                      Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley
                      Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity. -- Albert Einstein

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Regarding privatization of prisons:
                        The results are mixed. It has worked in some places and has failed in others. In NC they experimented with it and it failed on all levels. This is the general trend regarding the contracting of services, the results are mixed.
                        "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.”

                        — John Stuart Mill

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                        • #13
                          If the government wasn't meddling where they have no business then there would be plenty of money for the legitimate business of government such as prisons.
                          I don't consider the issue of private prisons as being a conservative issue.
                          The liberal politician has the only job where they go to the office to work for everyone but those who pay their salary.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Citizen85 View Post
                            Regarding privatization of prisons:
                            The results are mixed. It has worked in some places and has failed in others. In NC they experimented with it and it failed on all levels. This is the general trend regarding the contracting of services, the results are mixed.
                            Same here, most have gone by the way side. To many releases of wrong persons and escapes.
                            A Veteran is someone who at one point in their life wrote a blank check made payable to The United States of America, for an amount up to, and including their life. That is honor, and there are way too many people in this country today, who no longer understand that fact!

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                            • #15
                              I don't like the idea of the government giving the lowest bidder rights that are inherently government responsibility. It is no different in my mind than a parent who has someone else punish their child. It is the parents' job to dole out any corrective action. Just as it is government's responsibility to dole out punishment and/or rehabilitative services to criminals. The government should not standby and allow or encourage private organizations to punish the citizens of it country.
                              But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

                              For the intelectually challenged: If the government screws the people enough, it is the right and responsibility of the people to revolt and form a new government.

                              Comment

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