After weeks of debate and hundreds of calls by our members, MCO got its first look at the revised Department of Corrections budget at the joint House and Senate conference committee on Wednesday.
In total, the committee opted not to adopt the Senate’s $41 million in cuts but did agree to $17.5 million less than what Gov. Rick Snyder had requested for the corrections department.
To achieve these reductions, each of the state’s facilities, with the exception of Huron Valley Women’s, will get a .99 percent cut for a combined $10 million in savings. According to the House Fiscal Agency, this equates to roughly $357,143 per facility, but the MDOC is still evaluating the proposal and has yet to release a detailed statement on its implications prison by prison.
One bright spot in the budget is that MCO was successful in swaying public and legislative opinion on the need to restore $4.4 million in funding to train an additional 177 new corrections officers in FY ’2018. With nearly 600 vacancies statewide, this will theoretically give the department the ability to hire over 500+ new officers in the next 18 months as we struggle to achieve adequate and safe staffing levels throughout the state.
Next, the full Senate and House must approve the budget proposal. If they approve, it will go to Gov. Rick Snyder.
Moving forward, MCO will continue to make our member’s voices heard and lead on best practices in the industry and innovation to make corrections a safe and effective environment for everyone.
Read the full conference report or see below for some of the reductions and deletions made in the conference agreement.
Points of note:
– $4.4 million to train 177 new corrections officers was restored.
– $4 million increase in the Trinity food contract was reduced to $3 million.
– $3.5 million increase in the Corizon Health Care Contract was reduced to $2 million.
– $1.5 million expansion in the Wayne County Residential Alternative to Prison project was eliminated.
MCO released a statement yesterday on the conference report:
Michigan Corrections Organization Statement on Corrections Budget Conference Report
Previous MCO statements on the 2017-2018 budget:
Call now and say no to Senate budget cuts
Press Release: Senator Proos’ Corrections Budget Puts Officers, Prisoners, and Community at Risk
Michigan Senate Budget Recommendation Will Hurt Corrections Staff and Inmates