Texas Abolition Blog

Texas Abolition Blog

Make Property Tax Cuts Permanent and Finance Texas Schools!

Abolish the Death Penalty! Save local counties the expense of prosecuting capital punishment trials and the expense of paying for multiple trials. Here is a simple way to lower costs for local and state government and make it permanent. Death Penalty cases cost an average of $2.3 million per case based on a 1992 study by the Dallas Morning News. . From the same 1992 study Life in Prison was estimated to cost $750,000. In Jasper County with the death penalty prosecution of 2 of the 3 James Bird killers, property taxes rose by 6.7%, adding $1 million to a $10 million county budget

Ending death penalty cases would free county funds for county law enforcement improvements (including salaries), county capital improvements (buildings, roads, parks, libraries), children and youth services (and specialized probation services), county health and human service needs (and staff salary needs), county human resources ( county employee salary and benefits), county court administration ( and staff salary needs), county regional growth costs (national homeland security, health and hospital care, public safety and communications), county election administration, county debt management and improved technology costs.

Death Penalty cases are paid for largely by county and city property taxes, taxes that have steadily increased over the past 20 years. As more money is earmarked for death penalty cases less money becomes available to fund basic city and county services and new programs that might be needed. Local property owners could find themselves more able to assist schools if they had lower county taxes. The state could provide more resources to education if they were not providing additional funds to death penalty counties (such as for prosecuting the Connally 7 for Dallas county). Texas should consider our children’s schools and health and human service programs more worthy of funding than funding the vengeance to execute inmates.

If Texas would consider funding education and family programs in a substantial way maybe our state tax dollars would be funding positive programs instead of bulging state prisons and a death row with over 400 inmates awaiting execution.

Revenge may be sweet for some but too costly for Texas!!!!