PPA603: Government Budgeting (MBQ 1118A)
Instructor: Chiji Ohayia
June 06, 2011
Public policy is the study of policy making by governments. A government's public policy is the set of policies (laws, plans, actions, behaviors) that it chooses. (Lee, Johnson, Joyce, 2008) Since governments claim authority and responsibility (to varying degrees) over a large group of individuals, they see fit to establish plans and methods of action that will govern that society. I will discuss the possible funding options for reducing Georgia’s sex offender rate, evaluate how public policy decisions affect the receipt of revenues, and develop a revenue policy that aligns with community values. It is a parent’s nightmare: a son or daughter is abducted, sexually assaulted and murdered by a predator that had been lurking, undetected, in their community. In 2006, President George W. Bush signed the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, which mandated the maintenance of a national registry of sex offenders, greatly expanded the legal definition of sex offenses and sex offenders, and established Project Safe Childhood program within the U.S. Department of Justice, Project Safe Childhood includes grants to states to help combat Internet predators as well as to help fund civil commitments, and aims to coordinate federal, state and local efforts to vigorously investigate and prosecute crimes against children, including sexual assault, child pornography, and kidnapping. (Brown, 2009) Since the mid 1990’s, sex offenders policy in Georgia has become increasingly more punitive and restrictive. (Williams, 2011) Anyone convicted of a sex crime is required to register as a sex offender. This person will have his or her personal details and crimes committed listed on Web-based notification sites for the remainder of his or her life, and will have restrictions on where he or she can live and will be recommended to a treatment center following release from prison. The core assumption that most children are sexually assaulted by strangers who are repeat offenders has not been supported by research. A statistical report published by the Georgia Department of Justice in 2000 revealed that only seven percent of offenders who sexually assaulted juveniles aged 0 to 17 were strangers to their victims; the vast majority of juveniles were assaulted by an acquaintance e.g. family friend, babysitter, neighbor, teacher, coach, or religious leader. This report also included that sexual assault of children ages twelve and under has been characterized by subjective assessments or typical high profile crimes for too long. (Brown, 2009) Those who argue that current policies are based on inaccurate assumptions about the perpetrators or sexual assaults against children are often quickly silenced by those who point to the horrific crimes committed by a few sadistic repeat offenders. Many experts agree that current sex offender policies—including registration, community notification, mandatory sentencing, civil commitment, and GPS tracking aimed at convicted sex offenders—do nothing to protect children from the individuals who are most likely to sexually assault them. Studies show that there are more than 500,000 registered sex offenders in the United States, and there are an estimated 100,000 sex offenders who are missing from the system. (Brown, 2009) Loopholes in this current system have allowed some sexual predators to evade law enforcement and place our children at risk. Some may wonder why there is such a focus on sex offenders. Why is there such a focus on pedophiles and sex offenders and rapists? The reason is, if Georgian’s look at the statistics it has the highest recidivist offender rate of any crime, even higher than murderers and armed robbery. As a society, people must share revulsion for what these criminals do to our children. The crimes are so terrible, that people are uncomfortable talking about them, but if people are to...