California’s criminal and juvenile justice system consists of the state correctional system, county jails and juvenile halls, probation departments, local law enforcement, prosecutors, and public defenders. The Budget Center provides timely research and analysis intended to help reform the state’s criminal and juvenile system, with the aim of promoting safer communities, better outcomes for individuals who come into contact with the system, and smarter choices about the allocation of public dollars.
California State and County Governments Spend More Than $20 Billion Annually on Incarceration and Responding to Crime
This Fact Sheet examines combined state and county spending on incarceration and responding to crime. Spending in these areas remains high, despite important criminal justice reforms adopted by voters in recent years.
Legislature Aims to Transform California’s Outdated, Show-Me-the-Money Bail System
This analysis examines the inequities present in California’s pretrial justice system and the two bills in the California Legislature that seek to fix the broken system.
Sentencing in California: Moving Toward a Smarter, More Cost-Effective Approach
This report looks at sentencing in California and explores how sentencing laws could be reformed with an eye toward improving public safety and community well-being as well as investing public dollars more wisely.