Intensive Probation Supervision:

Crime-Control and Cost-Saving Effectiveness

PEMD-93-23: Published: Jun 4, 1993. Publicly Released: Jul 13, 1993.

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GAO reviewed intensive probation supervision (IPS) programs in Arizona to determine: (1) how well the IPS program controlled criminal behavior; and (2) whether the program was a cost-saving alternative to incarceration.

GAO found that: (1) the percentages of IPS offenders arrested while supervised by IPS were below those for offenders sentenced to standard probation; (2) in Pima County, equivalent percentages of IPS offenders and probationers were arrested for new crimes; (3) IPS was relatively effective in controlling crime when offenders were under direct supervision; (4) the cost of sentencing offenders to IPS was lower than the cost of sentencing offenders to prison; (5) despite the mix of offenders supervised by the program, county IPS programs represented cost-saving alternatives to incarceration in terms of direct operating costs; and (6) Arizona's IPS program reduced criminal activity and direct costs, but additional requirements could make total costs for IPS greater than those for incarceration.

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