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Taxpayers to Save Millions as State Axes New Jail Construction Project

Categories: | Author: sheriff sheriff | Posted: 3/30/2015 | Views: 4315
Sheriff Credited for Alternatives to Incarceration and Jail Reduction Initiatives

Pictured is Sheriff DeMarco.

YAPHANK, NY-- Suffolk County Sheriff Vincent DeMarco has made safely reducing the jail population to prevent costly construction of new jail beds a priority of his work in public office, and that work came to fruition over the last few weeks.  The Sheriff, along with County Executive Steve Bellone, recently received word that the New York State Commission of Correction would grant Suffolk County a minimum three-year reprieve on mandated jail construction, followed by a review.  The project would have cost the county’s taxpayers upwards of $300 million over the next 20 years. 

Sheriff DeMarco could not have been more pleased with the State’s action, and stated, “Suffolk County residents are tired of paying some of the highest taxes in the nation, and if there is a better, cheaper and smarter way to do correctional work and keep people from cycling in and out of jail, we should devote our resources to those initiatives and not to building more jail capacity.  This is not only a rational approach, it’s less costly and it works.”

Sheriff DeMarco has long argued that the county should focus its attention on reducing the jail population through the use of community-based correctional alternatives and inmate rehabilitation, and through the years he has developed and championed the kinds of programs that have led to a significant drop in incarceration. Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone praised DeMarco at the 2015 State of County address on March 26th and called him, “the leading voice in our government on alternatives to incarceration.” 

Sheriff DeMarco added, “I’m pleased to be a part of reforming the criminal justice system in Suffolk and I look forward to working with the County Executive and his team to prioritize other initiatives that will help bring down the debt and make our communities safer.”

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