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SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDS REQUESTED FOR 1961
Mr. Rooney. So the members of this subcommittee may understand what transpired in the Subcommittee on Deficiencies, what requests were presented to that subcommittee?
Mr. BENNETT. A request for care of prisoners in the amount of $115,000 and for certain increases in the salaries of blue collar workers of $169,000.
Mr. ROONEY. What was the total request under salaries and expenses, $284,000 ?
Mr. BENNETT. No, sir. In addition to that, there were pay increases, Mr. Chairman, as a consequence of the pay increase bill. The amount of that was $1,900,000.
Mr. Rooney. How much was the total request in the supplemental? Mr. BENNETT. $2,184,000.
Mr. ROONEY. There was also a request under support of the U.S. prisoners, was there?
Mr. BENNETT. Yes, sir.
Mr. BENNETT. $200,000 for support of U.S. prisoners. That is to say, prisoners boarded in local institutions.
Mr. ROONEY. Very well; proceed.
INCREASED OPERATING EXPENSES
Mr. BENNETT. Mr. Chairman, our regular budget as distinguished from our buildings and facilities appropriation and the other appropriations contains an increase of $1,709,000 above the 1961 base. This has been brought about by a number of things, because of the changing nature of our incoming population, additional responsibilities that have been placed on us by the sentencing statutes, the upward trend in the cost of fuel, utilities, supplies, and equipment.
Mr. Rooney. For the record, please explain the additional responsibilities placed upon you by the sentencing statutes.
Mr. BENNETT. Congress passed a statute, Mr. Chairman and gentlemen, that provided that a judge, at his discretion, may commit a person before the court to the Federal Prison Bureau for observation, diagnosis, and recommendation back to the court for determination as to what the final sentence should be. In addition to that, the statute permits, in the judge's discretion, to commit a man for a completely indeterminate sentence, specifying merely the maximum.
We take these men into our institutions usually for a period of 60 days, although particularly difficult cases might go for 90 days. The types of cases we are getting under that thing are a more difficult type, the mental cases, cases of individuals who are tried by one court under rule 20. That means if a person commits the offense in New York and is apprehended in San Francisco and pleads guilty in San Francisco, he can plead to that court. The court in San Francisco, in order to have the necessary information and the facts and circumstances concerning the case, must have information not available to them, so they are committed to us for that purpose.
CHANGING NATURE OF INCOMING POPULATION
I would like to point out, as I take it you realize, Mr. Chairman, from reading these statistics of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, that we are getting continually a more serious and more difficult group of prisoners, such as kidnapers, racketeers, drug violators. Bank robbery has become almost exclusively a Federal offense now.
What this amounts to is shown by the fact that the average sentence now of all of the prisoners in our institutions during the past years has increased from 25 months to 32 months. That is the average amount of time increase in the sentence.
We are getting a large number of very long sentences of drug violators and at the same time the immigration and liquor law violators have remained about the same, or substantially so, until recent months, particularly with regard to the liquor law violators who come from the depressed areas of the South. They are, again, on on a marked upward trend.
Of course, these longer term prisoners require closer supervision and more detailed and more careful analysis and development of information to determine where they are to serve their sentence and under what conditions and how they are to work and so on.
There have also been added, as you know, an increasing number of mental defectives who are being brought into the system, homosexuals, compulsive alcoholics, and things of that kind. They are mostly floaters of one kind and another, where we cannot establish the State of residence so we are taking over those in the Federal system.
I say that just to let you know of the problems we face in dealing with this increase, not only in numbers but increase in complexity of particular individuals.
INCREASE IN COST OF CARE OF PRISONERS
We are asking for a slight amount of increase in what we call care costs; that is to say, how much it costs to provide food, clothing, and other necessities of the prisoners. We are asking for a 1-cent increase there.
Presently, we are allowed 79 cents per man per day for all costs other than personnel costs. We are asking for an increase of 1 cent there to cover this increased cost of clothing, food, and so on.
I take it you realize there has been a steady increase in the number of young offenders who are coming into the Federal system and mostly this is youngsters who steal automobiles, transport them across the State line in search for some El Dorado they may want, or trying to escape from some situation in which they find themselves.
Then, of course, there are some who do it for the thrill. There are a few juvenile delinquents and youthful offenders who are sent to us for drug addiction; not very many in that category. There are a few for assault and the ordinary type of offense and we are still receiving some military offenders; that is to say, cases convicted by the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps courts-martial. As I point out later on, we are trying to concentrate our attention upon the youngsters because if we can keep them from relapsing into crime we have saved a very vulnerable group.
Mr. ROONEY. Is it the fact that most of them have already been in trouble previously before they were sentenced as youth offenders to a Federal institution?
Mr. BENNETT. That is right, sir.
Mr. ROONEY. Some of them have a long record prior to their sentencing?
Mr. BENNETT. Some of them do; yes, sir. Very few, Congressman, very few do we get now that have not had some previous court experience. They are usually, on the first chance, granted probation if There is any hope for them at all. The only time it is not granted is when they are defective mentally.
Mr. ROONEY. What about the cases where they do not even get that far and complaints have been withdrawn or the police decided to give the young fellow another chance on his own?
Mr. BENNETT. Precisely.
Mr. ROONEY. By the time they get sentenced as a youthful offender they have become quite callous about incidents in violation of the law!
Mr. BENNETT. That is right. That is an additional challenge to us to try and do something with them. I tell you, it is not easy.
ADDITIONAL CUSTODIAL OFFICERS
Under this appropriation, Mr. Chairman, we are asking for 50 additional custodial officers. This is merely to take care of the increased population we will have this year. As a matter of fact, our average number of prisoners per officer has increased. Five years ago we had 1 officer for each 35 prisoners and now we have 1 officer for each 45 prisoners. We have carried on even though the workload is heavier and the hazards of our officers are somewhat greater than heretofore.
We have not had, for your information, and with your support, what might be called a major riot this last year. We have had a few instances of minor disturbances created by some of our more aggressive groups, but by and large, we have gotten along pretty well. This additional custodial complement of 50 officers is estimated to cost $265,000.
OTHER PERSONNEL INCREASES
The other large increase in our personnel, or the other principal increase in our personnel—bear in mind that we have about 5,000 employees in the Federal Prison Service—the other increment we are requesting is for 34 classification and parole officers to help us prepare these reports and help us gather together the data that is necessary to give the reports to the courts. In addition to that, there is $145,000 to take care of the mandatory in-grade pay promotions and $169,000 to take care of the wage board increases.
Under that appropriation, Mr. Chairman, that pretty well summarizes my general statement.
Total number of permanent positions.
(42 U.S.C. 207)
2 242 246
2 260 262
8. 5 $6, 771
2 260 260
8. 5 $6,927
Program and financing
(In thousands of dollars)
1961 estimate 1962 estimate
Program by activities:
leases, and transfers.
Total operating costs...
Depreciation included above (-).---
Total operating costs, funded...
2. Maintenance and operation of institutions..
Property transferred in without charge, net (-).
Total capital outlay, funded....
Total program costs, funded..
curred for costs of other years, net..
Total obligations..... Financing:
Unobligated balance lapsing..
New obligational authority.
Mr. ROONEY. As to the item salaries and expenses beginning at page 116 of the committee print, the justifications with regard thereto are to be found under tab 28. We shall at this point insert in the record all of the pages except the green sheets; to-wit, pages 28–1 through 28–18. (The pages follow :) SALARIES AND EXPENSES, BUREAU OF PRISONS
[In thousands) Appropriation, 1961.-
$43, 045 Proposed Supplemental due to pay increase (Public Law 86-568)
1, 900 Total.--
44, 945 Estimate, 1962_
46, 550 Increase