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Grayson County jail mail to go digital

Staff Writer
Herald Democrat
Grasyon County commissioners will consider a sub contractor Tuesday for the new inmate phone system.

Grayson County commissioners Tuesday will consider approving a contract with a company that will scan inmate mail for the Grayson County Jail. The mail will be sent to a P.O. Box rather than to the jail. It will then be scanned and delivered to inmates on a tablet.

The process is part of a plan developed by the company that provides jail phone service for the Sheriff's Office. That company, Correcto Solutions Group, will handle all of the inmate mail except legal correspondence.

The subcontractor that will do the scanning is called TechFriends, Inc.

"This project significantly reduces the physical mail coming into the facility and the risk of contraband coming in through the mail. There is no cost to the county for this project," Captain Harvey Smitherman told commissioners in his note attached to the request. Several months ago when discussing the project, GCSO Lt. Sarah Bigham said the jail expects to have about one tablet for every four inmates. In addition to the free access the inmates will get each day, inmates will be allowed to rent the tables for an hour at a time for .99 an hour.

The tablets will not have open access to the outside world, Bigham said. They will have access only to the closed system of electronic mail and to the Grayson County Law Library. She said currently, inmates are only allowed to have up to six photos with them in the jail. However, once the new system is in place an inmate can set up an account and then family can email them photos. Those photos will be screened for appropriateness and then delivered to the inmate’s account where they can see them when they have access to the tablet. Mail coming to the inmate is free.

Commissioners meet at 10 a.m. at the Grayson County Courthouse in Sherman Tuesday. The meeting is available to watch online at https://www.co.grayson.tx.us/page/co.ccvideo