Where does all the money go?
Where does all the money go?

Where does all the money go?

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Where does the money go is a very good question. I have been researching and here is a rough estimate of where the money goes. I am not actually sure why so much money is being spent on certain things and why money is being spent on things that I am not sure prisons even have.  However, this is what my research has turned up:

$80 Billion in US  tax payer dollars goes to the imprisonment of it’s criminals why is the bill so high? It cost      $50, 000- $60,000 per inmate a year to house. Remember this is only an estimate.

  • State Prisons $43 Billion
  • Federal Prison 5.8 Billion
  • Correctional Employee Benefits 4.25 Billion
  • Healthcare for Inmates 8.1 Billion
  • Incarcerated Older Inmates 16 Billion
  • Solitary Confinement  $75,000 per Inmate Annually
  • Guantanamo Bay $900,000 per year

Now here are the day to day operations, healthcare, maintenance, and etc.

Security and Administration:                                                                                                                                         Someone on duty for security it cost  $19,663 per inmate per year   Administration  $ 3,493 per inmate per year                                                                           Total $23,156

Healthcare:  $ 12,442   per inmate     Pharmaceuticals   $998     Medical care  $ 8,768      Dental care   $748        Psychiatric services    $1,978                                                                                                                                      In some states like Arizona inmates have a co-pay of $20.00 for the doctor, $20.00 for UA’s  $ 4.00 for the dentist each time. Tax payers in Arizona still pay for inmate’s healthcare.

Operations:   per inmate per year     $7,214      Assignment, Testing and Reception  $261                                 Classification     $1,773         Transportation      $18        Maintenance of records    $660

Rehabilitation  per inmate   $1612      Academic Education  $944      Vocational Training   $ 354             Substance Abuse Programs    $313

Inmate Support To house an inmates and provide support to inmates:                                                                         Per Year  $2,562     Food $ 1,475   Activities  $439     Canteen & Employment  $407     Clothing  $ 171   Religious activities $70                                                                                                                                                 In doing my research I didn’t find may prisons that have activities, many families are sending  more money for canteen so their family members have more to eat because the portions are very small, not enough for a grown up. Family members are sending extra money for clothing because the prisons only supply a certain amount in the beginning. If an inmate doesn’t have anyone to send them money, they wear hand-me -downs from other inmates.

Prisons get paid per inmate. Some states get paid more and some get paid less the averages are between $50, 000 – $60,000, the lowest paid is around $32,000 per inmate.

Nearly 2.4 million people wake up in prison each morning in the US. That is 25% of the world’s prisoner’s.

Hidden Cost:    Commissary  Emails    Video Visit    Food Boxes   Travel    Hotels  Phone calls  Clothing                                 Clothing      

 Prison Policy Initiative estimates that families spends 2.9 billion a year on commissary accounts, phone calls, food boxes, and visits. 

Families are often responsible for attorneys fees, restitution& fees, court fees, raising grandchildren or other family members.



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