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San Mateo County Jail: An Outside Perspective

Do we really need a $100 million+ jail when lawmakers are re-assessing our incarceration policies?

Dear Editor:

I am struck by a simple fact: 70% of all Californians held in County jail on any given day are awaiting trial, not convicted. 

It costs about $100 per day to keep a person awaiting trial in jail for one day compared with about $2.50 per day to put the same person on electronic monitoring, according to “Public Safety: California at a Crossroads” by Allen Hopper.  

The United States incarcerates a much higher percentage of its population than any other country on earth and major American thinkers and law-makers throughout the country are re-assessing our sentencing and incarceration policies. 

Let’s consider this issue carefully now before we commit to a $100 million San Mateo County jail which may not be needed by the time it is finished if national and state policy has shifted.

 

Sincerely,

Kaia Eakin

Redwood City, CA  94061

 

Should we build a new jail in Redwood City? Vote in .

Want to send a Letter to the Editor? Email stacie@patch.com with your thoughts.

James Lee Han September 20, 2012 at 10:08 PM
Thank you Kaia for a succinct explanation on why the new jail is a bad deal for the county.

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