The Cost of Incarceration in New York State

Special Report

New York invests billions of dollars to hold people behind bars in local jails. In 2019, a typical New York county spent more than $225 to incarcerate a single person for a single night, or more than $82,000 per year. In fact, jail budgets have grown even as the number of people in jail has gone down. Every dollar spent on the jail comes at the expense of funding other services that could help to build healthy and safe communities. This series of fact sheets breaks down how many dollars each New York State county spends on its local jail and shows how that money could be better spent.

For cumulative total spending by the 57 New York counties outside of New York City download the New York State Counties summary fact sheet.