Criminal Justice Reform Has Saved State Millions

Oklahoma saved more than $60 million over the past year by ending prison terms for simple drug possession and other crimes, according to a new report.

Ultimately, the state will see savings of approximately $137 million over five years, according to the analysis from the Office of Management and Enterprise Services released Tuesday.

State Question 780 reclassified some drug and property crime as misdemeanors rather than felonies. That reduced the number of people heading to prison, which then lowered the cost of incarcerating those felons for multiyear sentences.

Its companion on the ballot, State Question 781, included a provision requiring the state to analyze the effects of the new laws and issue a report each year.

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