Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Dean Kaufert (R - NIMBY)

Rep. Kaufert has a particularly shallow bill making its way through Madison banning Guantanamo Bay detainees from Wisconsin prisons unless -- hilariously -- they've broken Wisconsin law.

This will put him in direct conflict with Jonathan Krause, who thinks detainees belong in Wisconsin just to piss Sen. Feingold off.

But why not take in the detainees? Here in Wisconsin we now spend more money per annum on our corrections budget than we do the University of Wisconsin system and that's no small sum:
An analysis by the nonpartisan Council of State Governments Justice Center paints a bleak budgetary picture for Wisconsin corrections policy.

The Justice Center reports that from 1999 to 2009, the corrections budget grew from $700 million to $1.2 billion, a 71 percent increase. It projects that without a drastic change in corrections policies, Wisconsin will need $2.5 billion between 2009 and 2019 to reduce overcrowding and growth in prison population.
Everyone knows there's going to be a ton of federal money that comes with the detainees -- and according to one former governor it might be as much as $1 billion a year -- so why not bring them here? We've built all these prison beds, why not fill them with prisoners that can actually pay for them?

It's something to think about, especially since even if Kaufert succeeds in keeping the detainees out of Wisconsin, he might only be moving them across the border to the UP.

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