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telecorrectionsJune 8, 2016 - County Executive Robert P. Astorino announced today that the Department of Information Technology will be among the 100 organizations honored by CIO Magazine for the development of the TeleCorrections Inmate Kiosk and Video Visitation System.

“Our technology team does a terrific job of expanding services, maximizing efficiencies, and saving taxpayer money,” Astorino said. “I am proud that Westchester County’s IT has received national recognition for its efforts.”

The county’s IT department is responsible for a variety of services that range from maintaining the Westchester Telecom Network to enhancing public safety.

Specifically, the department was cited for its custom-built TeleCorrections Inmate Kiosk and Video Visitation System, which allows inmates to securely communicate face-to-face with people outside the jail, such as a family member or Probation Officer. The system also provides inmates with controlled access to their commissary balances, court dates, bail amount, and visitation schedule. The system was deployed at the Westchester County Jail in November 2011.

The Department of Correction estimates the TeleCorrections system saved the County $400,000 in 2015 by reducing travel and time for Probation Officers, as well as the wait for bail expediters to meet with inmates, thus reducing the cost of incarceration. By expanding the program across all housing units and allowing visitor access from mobile and tablet devices, usage grew from 1,000 visits in the first year of the program to 1,100 visits each month.

Westchester was one of 4 municipalities to be honored among the CIO 100, including the City of Long Beach, Miami-Dade County, and Michigan. In addition to the CIO award, Westchester has been named one of the top 10 digital counties in the United States for the past three years, and 10 times since 2005.

CIO Magazine’s 29th annual award ceremony will be held on August 16th in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA.

About the CIO 100
Recipients of this year's CIO 100 Award were selected through a three-step process. First, companies filled out an online application form detailing their innovative IT and business initiatives. Next, a team of external judges (many of them former CIOs) reviewed the applications in depth, looking for leading-edge IT practices and measurable results. Finally, CIO editors reviewed the judges' evaluations and selected the final 100.