Governor Deval Patrick's Five Year Capital Investment Plan FY2013 - FY2017

Governor's Capital Investment Plan FY2013


The Department of Corrections operates 18 institutions with five security levels ranging from contract pre-release to maximum security.  These facilities house over 10,000 criminally sentenced inmates in the jurisdiction of the Department of Corrections, 650 incarcerated as civil offenders and 575 pre-trial or awaiting trial offenders.  In addition to the correctional facilities managed by the Department of Corrections, the Commonwealth has 18 jails, houses of correction and related correctional facilities located in 14 Massachusetts counties and managed by sheriffs.

The following graph reflects that Administration’s estimated capital investment in corrections capital projects over the next five years, as compared to fiscal years 2007 and 2012 corrections related spending. With the release of the Corrections Master Plan, the Administration plans to increase funding for corrections projects over five years.

This bar graph shows the Corrections spending: all sources of funds for FY07 and FY12-FY17.

Policy Goals

  1. Alleviate overcrowding. The Corrections Master Plan (CMP) makes a series of proposals to update existing facilities to add capacity and build targeted new investments. The Administration will update population projections based on sentencing reform to better assess the future need.
  2. Reduce recidivism. Rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders back into the community is critical to public safety and can decrease the projected incarcerated population. Disrupting the cycle of incarceration can most effectively be achieved by providing facilities and programs that provide effective support services to inmates while incarcerated as they prepare to return home. Additionally, strengthening existing stakeholder partnerships while cultivating new relationships with key community service providers will create a continuum of support services to inmates helping to ensure their successful and sustainable transition back to a crime free life at home.  
  3. Maximize existing resources. To maximize resources with limited funding, the Commonwealth is identifying the best use of existing facilities and identifying which entity is best suited for particular functions within the existing system.
  4. Create a more integrated, efficient and cost-effective corrections system. By considering the system as a whole and establishing more resource-sharing, a more integrated, flexible and effective system with potential cost-savings can be realized.

Administration Accomplishments to Date

  • In 2012, Governor Patrick signed a balanced sentencing reform bill that will allow as many as 600 non-violent drug offenders to become immediately eligible for parole and eliminate parole eligibility for certain three-time violent offenders. In the long run, sentencing reform will help to mitigate the overcrowding problem and reduce the need for the Commonwealth to build new facilities, which was previously estimated to cost $1.3 billion to $2.3 billion.
  • The Administration prepared and released the CMP in 2012 which builds on the Sentencing Reform and targets:
    • Improving existing correctional facilities.
    • Increasing bed space to alleviate overcrowding and improve access to programs and services that help prevent recidivism.
    • Creating regional approaches to housing inmates that facilitate reentry into society.
  • Massachusetts is one of thirteen states partnering with The Pew Center on the States using their Results First Model to employ a cutting-edge cost benefit analysis to analyze our criminal justice policies.  
  • Massachusetts hosted a three day conference called "Rethinking Reentry: A Massachusetts Imperative".  The outgrowth of this conference will be a statewide strategic plan on reentry for the Commonwealth, informed by and coordinated with the Criminal Justice Commission and the cost benefit analysis being done by The Pew Center.  These efforts will help to guide our strategic investment in capital projects for corrections.

FY13 Highlights

  • The Commonwealth is investing in projects that help alleviate overcrowding for women, including:
    • Construction of the Regional Western Massachusetts Women's Facility in Hampden County
    • Study for improvements at MCI Framingham that will better address the diverse needs of incarcerated women.
  • Funding in this plan will provide for the relocation of inmates at the Middlesex Sheriff facility located in the Edward J. Sullivan Courthouse in Cambridge.  The relocation of inmates will allow efforts to close and redevelop this property to proceed.
  • In conjunction with the passage of sentencing reform, the Commonwealth will update population projections to ensure that the Commonwealth does not overbuild.
  • Capital investments in FY13 are targeted to urgent repair needs, including the Suffolk County Jail building envelope and roof, water source upgrades to address issues at Norfolk DOC facilities and $2 million for improvements to inmate cells to prevent suicide based on the recommendations of the Hayes Report.

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