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Responses to Project Requests

Responses to Project Requests

Review of changes: BOP Reduction in Sentence Motions

Re-published with permissions

Download bop-reduction-in-sentencing-program.pdf

Prison Capacities, Rated and Designation

The capacities of federal prisons were published annually, in the "State of the Bureau," until about 2001. Today, not even the "annual" State of the Bureau is published annually. This February 2016 response (replacing our former, 2009 response) offers a glimpse of how many inmates that prisons were designed to hold, and are now "rated" to hold. To get a feel for how overcrowded the BOP is, compare these numbers to the weekly "Inmate Population Report," published at

Download 16-0216 Capacities PP80 population report.pdf

Medical Levels

The BOP breaks its facilities into four "Medical Care Levels" -- Level 1 are facilities for the healthiest of inmates, often in rural areas, while Level 4 facilities are the Medical Centers. Most Facilities are Medical Level 2, meaning generally that they are within driving distance from a regional medical center and can house inmates with controlled medical conditions. This 2012 response lists BOP prison Medical Levels.

Download BOP Med Levels 12-0126.pdf

Ion Spectrometer Guidance, 2009

For many years, the BOP has been using Ion Spectrometers - devices designed to detect molecules of contraband substances, like explosives or drugs. Positive ion spectrometer tests used to mean the person could not enter a BOP facility that day. After finally addressing "software" issues, this guidance about how to use Ion Spectrometers was issued.

Download Ion Spec Use 9_0324.pdf