Reducing the number of remands at the Bordelais Correctional Facility, increasing traffic speeding fines and imposing more penalties against littering are some of the measures Independent Senator Dr. Stephen King has recommended to government to lessen the country’s fiscal gap.
According to information he provided during his presentation on the 2014/15 budget at a meeting of the Senate on Thursday, May 22, the Bordelais Correctional Facility has 639 inmates, with 237 men serving sentences, as well as 387 men and 12 women on remand.
“That is wrong and that needs to be addressed,” he said while highlighting that the cost of maintaining one prisoner at the facility for a year is estimated to be $19,000.
“So our remands are costing us money when they could be out earning money. [and] looking after their families rather than us paying for them to be housed in Bordelais. It’s not a great house, by the way. I can tell you it’s not a pleasant place to be. But still it’s better to have them out working than in there at $19,000 per person,” he remarked.
“Let us get people out of remand and let us only put people in prison, really and truly, who are dangerous to themselves and to others. Let us Let us look at how we are approaching this whole remand and incarceration approach.
With reference to increasing fines for speeding, Dr. King said, “I saw the present revenue from fees and fines was $3-million. Let’s increase fines, increase law enforcement. Let us stop the speeding that are killing people and fine people who are speeding in our country. We would make good money there. [If they are] driving under the influence, let us fine them. [Those] who are drunk or for that matter, using marijuana and driving or whatever other drugs.”
In addition to this, Dr. King proposed the implementation of a second criminal court, a new judge, along with a master to do case management.
He further suggested that this new facility, the forensic mortuary and a base for crime officers, be housed at Golden Hope.
The independent senator moreover, said that alternative sentencing, should be taken on stream.
During his presentation, he made a number of other proposals which he believes will help reduce the country’s fiscal deficit in various other ministries including education and health – all in the aim of making them more productive and cost effective.