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Kentucky Attorney General’s office fails to disclose how much tax money it spends on an execution

Pat Delahanty, chair of KCADP

Pat Delahanty, chair of KCADP

In the Louisville Courier-Journal‘s “Making good use of tax dollars or what’s the bang for the buck,” KCADP’s chair Rev. Pat Delahanty take’s the Kentucky Attorney General’s office to task for failing to disclose to the public how much it spends on execution:

It is good public policy to require accountability of our three branches of government when it comes to the use of our tax dollars. We have a right to know what we’re buying and what it’s costing.

So in the state regulatory process – how a law is implemented – the department promulgating the regulation must tell us what it costs and why.

For example, the Courier-Journal published an AP story about a hearing held in Frankfort on Sep. 25 regarding a regulation describing how the State – in our name – executes inmates. As required by law, the Department of Corrections attempted to find out the cost by asking parties involved in the process to provide the needed information. DOC declared in the proposal an estimated cost of $81,438.00.As you will see below this cannot be the full cost.

Bear in mind that this is only the projected cost for the act of killing itself, not for all the work that precedes that deadly moment. That totals in the millions of dollars without much bang for the buck: 4 executions in 50+ years.

It appears that all the entities from whom information was requested responded with an estimated cost for the work their employees would perform to carry out a killing, but one. The Attorney General’s office on behalf of all the Commonwealth Attorneys did not provide a specific cost.

Please visit our Why Abolish section for more info on how the costly death penalty is a waste of taxpayers’ money.

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