Media Coverage

Study Praises Texas for Prison Reforms, but Comes With Warning

04/13/2011 - Texas was praised Tuesday for adopting wide-ranging prison reforms that have dramatically cut the state's recidivism rate — and warned that repeat incarcerations and criminal justice costs could rise again if budget-burdened legislators slash the programs.

The comments came from Pew Center on the States official Adam Gelb as he announced results of a nationwide study of prison recidivism. In Texas, the study found, 31.9 percent of the 72,130 prisoners released in 2004 returned to prison within three years.


Gelb said the reforms were propelled by the state's need for additional costly prison beds.

"The corrections department said it needed 14,000 to 17,000 beds over the next five years and that it would cost $2 billion to do that," Gelb said. "Legislators, frankly, said 'no.' "

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Jennifer Laudano | 202.540.6321
Public Safety Performance Project

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