Cuomo announces degree programs for prisoners

ALBANY (AP) – Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing to provide college classes in New York prisons, saying a college degree will reduce the likelihood an inmate will return to a life of crime when released.

The program will offer associate and bachelor degree education at 10 prisons, one in each region of the state.

Cuomo announced the program at a church service for the New York Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators conference Sunday morning alongside New York City mayor Bill de Blasio.

According to a Cuomo press release, New York currently spends $60,000 per year on each prisoner, and it will cost approximately $5,000 per year to educate an inmate. It did not specify the cost of the overall program.

The state will issue a Request for Proposal from qualified educational associations in March.