A panel of state lawmakers studying inequities in Iowa sentencing laws recently heard about the growing costs of supervising sex offenders once the get out of prison. Ron Mullin with corrections services said tougher laws give offenders parole of either ten years, or life, depending on the type of sex offense.
The corrections department uses global positioning to keep track of the paroled sex offenders. Mullin says there are some 500 offenders currently on global positioning tracking and by 2010 they expect that to increase by 150 to 200. Mullin says it costs $7.88 a day to track paroled offenders with global positioning systems.
Mullin says the number of sex offenders on parole is expected to triple in the next ten years. He says by the year 2017 they’ll have an addition 2,400 sex offenders under supervision and he says when you see right now that they have some 800 to 850 under supervision, the projected increase is "startling." Along with the increased cost, Mullin says the tougher law has led to other things as well.
Mullin says the special sentence has led to more plea bargaining at the local level, because of the concern that the offender would be on supervision for life. Mullin made his comments last week to the legislative panel.