State budget includes $1.3 billion for Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry

KOLD News 10-10:30 p.m. recurring
Published: Jul. 7, 2021 at 11:26 AM MST|Updated: Jul. 7, 2021 at 11:33 AM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - We are breaking down the state budget to see just how your tax dollars will be spent in FY 2022.

According to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee, more than ten percent of the state’s overall budget, roughly $1.3 billion, will go to the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry.

The department reported it will spend nearly $31 million on a five percent pay raise for correctional officers.

The budget also includes roughly $22 million on building renewal, $18.7 million on the closure of the Florence prison, $28 million to increase rates for contracted providers of correctional services, and $25.6 million to repair critical fire systems and doors at the Eyman complex. The budget also includes more than $20 million to to replace radios and issue stab vests to all correctional officers.

On Tuesday, Director David Shinn released a statement reading in part, ““These critical resources will have a significant impact on our efforts of recruiting and retaining correctional officers. The more officer positions are filled, the more it will allow CO III and Sergeants to perform their core mission of inmate treatment and leadership.”

When the ADCRR proposed the budget, Director Shinn said enhanced recruitment and retention efforts had yielded small, but positive steady gains toward reducing the vacancy rate.

According to the department’s records, more than 1,100 out of 6,655 correction officer positions went unfilled in 2020. That is a vacancy rate of 16.9 percent.

Compare that to June 2019, when the department reported 1,283 correction officer openings out of 6,655. That put the vacancy rate at 19.3 percent.

Click here to look at the final engrossed budget bills.

Click here to read the ADCRR’s proposed budget plan.

Click here to read the ADCRR’s news release on the historic budget.

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