SF County Jail By The Numbers: At Least $135 Per Day To House An Inmate

According to the Ex, “Inmates in San Francisco County Jail have it better than most people incarcerated in California.”

But what is “it”? Perhaps some of the figures cited in their article might help answer that question.

How much SF taxpayers pay to house one inmate (most of whom are awaiting prosecution) for a year: $63,000

For one day, according to the California Board of State and Community Corrections: $173

For one day, according to Chief Deputy Kathy Gorwood of the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department: $135

Number of beds in SF’s jail system: 2,360

Number of beds that are for “training purposes only”: 372

SF’s jails’ total capacity: 1988

Bunks per cell: 2

Number of inmates with “violent histories, mental issues or problems with gangs” allowed per cell: 1

Average jail population over the past 18 months: 1524

Number of alleged offenders “charged with crimes awaiting their court dates on supervised release”: 888

Number of offenders on diversion programs: 1060

Percent of inmates taking classes in the jail system’s “Five Keys” charter school: 30

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at eve@sfappeal.com.

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