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Massachusetts Corrections System Master Plan

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As a strategic capital plan, this Corrections Master Plan (CMP) focused on the system as a whole in order to identify the most cost-effective approach to investing capital dollars in the Massachusetts Correctional System. This comprehensive approach provides a framework to meet the projected bed space needs into 2020, address current overcrowding, and create a better coordinated system that is both efficient and cost-effective.

Application of a new standards–based capacity (CMP Baseline Capacity) indicates that the system housing 2009 populations has a current shortfall of approximately 7,300 bed spaces, before considering growth in populations.

Without any capital improvements or modifications to operating procedures and policies, this shortfall is expected to climb to approximately 10,100 bed spaces by 2020, requiring an estimated capital investment of $1.3 to $2.3 billion in today’s dollars and an increase of estimated annual operating costs totaling as much as $120 million.

As state budgets continue to be challenged, it is clear that the needs of the current system are outpacing available funding. In short, the existing system is not sustainable and requires, in addition to planned capital investment, the investigation of every type of initiative – executive, legislative, judicial, and operational – to reduce recidivism, reduce the population incarcerated in correctional facilities, and create a more proficient, and sustainable system in a climate of ever shrinking resources.

To this end, the Corrections Master Plan includes projections of bed space needs; considers upgrades to increase capacity within existing facilities in order to reduce the need for new bed spaces; identifies barriers to a more efficient system; proposes regional and multi-jurisdictional facilities to add flexibility and address needs more cost-effectively; recommends shared resources and centralization of some support services; estimates the capital implications of the plan; and prioritizes components to be funded in the initial capital plan.

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