County Executive William R. Steinhaus announces today a proposed plan for a highly integrated Criminal Justice and Safety Computer System that will enhance the collaborative efforts of the District Attorney, Emergency Response, Jail, Probation, Public Defender and Sheriff’s Office.
Steinhaus stated, “Dutchess County’s Criminal Justice and Safety agencies and our Office of Computer Information Services (OCIS) have a long history of working together to address common information processing goals. This interagency collaboration has been paramount to our past success and will be vital to the successful implementation of the new proposed system. “Bottom line, said the County Executive, “this will make our community safer and help our Deputy Sheriffs, District Attorneys and others do their jobs better.”
Sheriff Adrian “Butch” Anderson said, “The proposed integrated public safety system represents an opportunity for all levels of public safety to integrate and work together to enhance the quality of life for all of Dutchess County.”
The new technically advanced system will replace the County’s existing Mainframe-based Criminal Justice systems that have served us well for nearly 20 years, however due to their “relative outdated” technologies they can no longer be maintained and need to be replaced.
Tim Mahler, Commissioner of OCIS, said “It is critical that we provide modern tools to nearly 500 hundred County staff that use our computer systems each day. With new tools our Criminal Justice and Safety staff will be better able to carry out their jobs and keep our residents safe.”
Below are just a few of the critical functions that the new system will provide:
1. A digital mugshot will be attached to a subject's computer records and can be viewed by staff across the Criminal Justice agencies.
2. Arrest warrants and other criminal justice data will display on 911 and Sheriff dispatch screens. This critical information will help keep police, fire, EMS workers and residents out of harm’s way.
3. Sheriff Deputies on patrol will have mobile computer access to County Criminal Justice records and will electronically submit reports from their cars.
4. Fingerprints will be taken digitally rather than using traditional paper and ink fingerprint cards. The system will transmit the fingerprints over a high speed circuit to the appropriate state and federal agencies. In about 1-2 hours a confirmation of the person's identity will be received. This is compared to the 1-2 weeks under the current manual fingerprinting method.
5. Legal documents can be digitally scanned and attached to a subject's computer records. This will make documents readily available to staff across the various agencies.
6. Criminal activity data can be plotted on Digital "Pin Maps" - giving a visual of activity by location. This will help in crime analysis and trends and provides a planning/research tool.
District Attorney William Grady said, “Advanced computer technology has become the backbone of our Criminal Justice System on the local and state, as well as the national, levels. It is essential that we, as a County, keep pace with this process.”
Steinhaus said, “The County has worked hard to reduce the overall system cost. We’ve negotiated a nearly $400,000 reduction with New World Systems, the primary vendor. Furthermore, the County will realize a “net” annual savings of $100,000 in computer system fees after our Mainframe computer is eliminated as a result of this project.”
This one-time capital cost represents less than 1% of the involved agencies’ operating budgets over the five-year bonding period, a sound investment to provide enhanced support for the County’s criminal justice and safety agencies and for the safety of Dutchess County residents.
A $2,650,000 bond request has been prepared to implement this critical system. An additional $150,000 will be funded from NYS 911 Board reimbursements.