Californian's spending priorities are badly misplaced.
- In the last two decades, taxpayer dollars have built twenty one prisons and just one public university.
- For each person in state prison for a year, the state spends over $47,000, while we spend less than $7,000 per year for K - 12 students.
- Over the past 30 years, we've increased our spending on prisons by nearly 1500%, compared to just 4% for K -12 education and health services.
Such spending makes no sense, especially in an era when state and local lawmakers must make painful cuts each year to balance budgets.
Tell California law makers: it's time for smart justice.
That means prioritizing law enforcement resources for serious crimes, making sentences fit the crime, expanding successful approaches that reduce jail and prison populations, and using those savings to focus on health, education and prevention.
I am writing to urge you to support smart criminal justice approaches that can save taxpayer dollars and increase public safety at the same time. Specifically, it's time to prioritize law enforcement resources for serious crimes, make sentences fit the crime, reduce jail and prison spending, and use those savings to focus on health, education and prevention.
We cannot continue to waste billions of dollars on a prison and justice system that doesn't work - it only weakens our education and health systems and other community needs.
[Your comments here]
We need to set a course for a new, smart approach to criminal justice and public safety.
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