Case Studies

CJSF has worked with cities and counties to drive fiscal and operational innovation, sustainability, and affordability for complex public safety and justice issues. From jails and courts to police and fire departments, we are experts in the fields of criminal justice and public safety with a record of producing results for clients.

New Orleans, Louisiana

Since the immediate years post-Katrina, PFM has worked hand-in-hand with the City of New Orleans to help improve the fiscal and operational performance of its public safety departments and criminal justice system. Working with the mayor's office and senior leadership, our team delivered the first-ever comprehensive and system-wide cost analysis, from inmate health care to food service to sheriff department compensation, to help the City save millions of dollars through operational changes in their criminal justice system and public safety departments. The reports below provide a detailed assessment of current levels of funding for the New Orleans criminal justice system and an analysis of the current measures of workflow and workload within the criminal justice system, along with recommendations for reform.

Since 2012, PFM has served as the City’s expert budget witnesses in a federal consent decree between the US Department of Justice and the independently elected Orleans Parish Sheriff. The City does not operate the jail, but is responsible for funding the jail. Members of the PFM team have testified in federal court, evaluated and analyzed the fiscal and budgetary implications of various staffing, funding, and operational proposals, and created a flexible multi-year budget model for the Sheriff’s office. Their work has helped the City to avoid and save millions of dollars while balancing investments to help achieve consent decree compliance.

ARTICLE: Times Picayune Editorial: New Orleans Needs to Modernize Its Justice System
REPORTS: New Orleans 21st Century Criminal Justice System_Oct 2012 // PART 1 and PART 2


Cuyahoga County, Ohio

In 2010, PFM supported a public-private initiative designed to transform and reform County government. As part of that effort, PFM experts worked with a citizens committee to review the operations of the County criminal justice system and make recommendations for the first administration elected under the new form of government. Subsequently, County leadership engaged PFM for a detailed analysis of the potential of consolidation of local jails.

REPORT: Great Ideas for A Great County Final 11-03-10
REPORT: Cuyahoga County - Regional Jail Assessment Final Presentation


Fairfax County, Virginia

Our team of experts reviewed the operations and organizational structure of the Fairfax County Police Department, including internal financial stressors like compensation, benefits, rank and staffing practices, and scheduled hours and leave. By evaluating all divisions and entities associated with the Police Department, PFM provided vital analysis and thoughtful recommendations using a holistic and comprehensive approach that have achieved meaningful results for the County.

REPORT: Fairfax County_Public Safety Review_FINAL REVISED_9.20.2016


Washington State

By analyzing the recruitment and retention practices and experience of the Washington State Patrol, PFM identified potential barriers to recruitment and drivers of attrition. Our experts’ analyses informed a series of recommendations to help the State of Washington enhance its operations and more efficiently and effectively attract and retain the highest quality workforce.

ARTICLE: Seattle Weekly: Budget Deal Secures Pay Hike for State Troopers
REPORT: Washington State Patrol Trooper Recruitment and Retention Study 01-06-16