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Justice Reinvestment in Arkansas: Policy Options and Projected Impacts

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2016
41 pages
Using extensive figures and tables, this report presents the data and analysis for the Arkansas Justice Reinvestment Project, which is "a data-driven approach to reduce corrections spending and reinvest savings in strategies that can decrease recidivism and increase public safety."
Data show prison population trends and associated costs. This analysis becomes the basis for policy options intended to improve the cost-effectiveness of Arkansas' corrections investments. Among the policy options proposed are to strengthen supervision for people who are at high or moderate risk of violating supervision conditions or reoffending; increase the intensity and effectiveness of behavioral health services in the community for people who need treatment for substance abuse; reconfigure residential correctional facilities to reach more people and respond more effectively to behaviors associated with substance abuse and other supervision violations by those on probation and parole; make responses to supervision violations more cost-effective and consistent ; implement parole-related policies that improve consistency and efficiency in assessment, programming requirements, and release decision making; and revise the Arkansas Sentencing Standards to ensure that prison space is reserved for people convicted of the most serious offenses and who have longer criminal histories. Remaining policy options continue the theme of improving community-based supervision and services while reserving prison for only the most dangerous offenders. Data are estimated for the cost-effectiveness of the various policy options. Extensive figures and tables