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United States Marshals Service Federal Prisoner
Detention Budget Execution and Formulation

Report No. 98-29
March 1998
Office of the Inspector General


The United States Marshals Service (USMS) enforces federal laws and provides support to the federal judicial system in executing arrest warrants, maintaining custody of prisoners, providing court security, protecting witnesses, and managing seized assets. For federal prisoners in its custody, the USMS provides secure confinement, care, transportation, and delivery to judicial proceedings. In FY 1996 the USMS utilized about $357 million of Federal Prisoner Detention funds to provide for the care and custody of a daily average of about 23,000 prisoners.

We found that the USMS does not always adequately monitor and control costs associated with federal prisoners. Major problems included:

We also found that the USMS has difficulty in budgeting for prisoner detention needs. This occurs, in part, because the USMS neither maintains aggregate arrest statistics needed to forecast needs nor communicates sufficiently with other federal law enforcement agencies that affect the USMS prisoner population.

The details of our work are contained in the Findings and Recommendations section of the report. Our scope and methodology are contained in Appendix I.