Email service is on its way to the Pasco County Jail … for a fee.
SmartJailMail is being installed at the Land O’ Lakes Detention Center, and is currently accepting applications from residents who wish to set up an account. It is not costing taxpayers money, but instead will be paid for by family members and friends of inmates who wish to utilize the program, according to a release.
A total of 77 kiosks are being set up in the detention center’s housing units, which will allow the inmates to read and send email to those who have approved accounts. Only email and photos sent through SmartJailMail accounts will be permitted, although inmates themselves will not be able to send photos.
Detention deputies will monitor emails and photos, just as outgoing phone calls made by inmates are currently monitored. Failure to follow the guidelines of the program could result in the cancellation of a user’s account.
Before SmartJailMail, inmates in the detention center were only allowed to receive postcards and pre-approved pictures through the U.S. Postal Service. The new email system will allow up to about eight pages of text sent for each email.
In addition to email, inmates will be able to make service requests via the kiosks, which include library services, chaplain meetings, and other social service programs. Inmates also will be able to review inmate rules and regulations, and provide tips to active criminal cases, such as the sheriff’s office’s “Caught on Camera” photographs.
Each email costs 50 cents to send, with each photo costing $1. Family members and friends can place funds into an inmate’s account so they have credits to both send and receive email and photos. Indigent inmates will be credited two emails every Saturday, which will expire that same day at midnight if they are not used.
The contract for SmartJailMail calls for 25 percent of profits to be returned to the inmate welfare account, which is used for inmate programs and services.
For more information, visit SmartJailMail.com.
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