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Right on Crime | July 14, 2012
Yakima County, Washington, is pursuing criminal justice reform to reduce the high costs currently weighing on the county jail system. About 82 percent of the County’s general fund is spent on criminal justice, to the tune of $42 million.
A blue ribbon panel has recommended electronic monitoring and streamlining of criminal cases to cut costs.
Questions were raised, however, as to whether criminal justice reform could create higher crime rates.
Right on Crime’s research and work suggests that evidence-based criminal justice reform actually cuts crime rates and costs.
Here in Texas, five years of criminal justice reforms have resulted in crime rates dropping at rates far exceeding national levels. Meanwhile, states that have failed to implement meaningful reforms have not experienced similar drops.
Yakima County is poised to take the right steps, and is asking the right questions—Texas can supply the answer.