County restores original service

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Indiana Lawyer Rehearing

After the Indiana Department of Corrections switched in the summer of 2010 from one victims’ notification service to another as a cost-saving measure, one northern Indiana county has restored its program with the previous service provider.

Elkhart County Sheriff Brad Rogers announced Jan. 7 that the county had restored the Victim Information and Notification Everyday system, or VINE, which is a product of Louisville-based Appriss.

Appriss previously provided the victim notification system to Indiana counties and the state until the DOC made the switch to an in-house system, Indiana SAVIN, Indiana Sex and Violent Offender Registry, and Alert Notification Services on July 1, 2010.

The reasons the DOC switched to an in-house system were: to serve more and spend less; to personalize the notification process; to improve information flow to victims, law enforcement, and other justice partners; and to leverage current technology, according to Brent Myers, director of registration and victim services for the DOC.

At the time of the switch, Myers said the contract with Appriss cost about $1 million per year. He said the in-house program would cost $375,000 per year using the Microsoft program Information Strategies.

A spokesman for Appriss said that Elkhart was the only county to switch back to the Appriss notification system as of Jan. 11.

Victim notification services provide information to those who register for information on specific offenders, including when the offenders move to another facility, if the offender has a hearing scheduled, or if the offender is released.

Rehearing "State changes victim alerts" IL July 21-Aug. 3, 2010


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