Friday, April 24, 2009

Keeping Track of Inmates: CDCR to Revamp its Offender Database

Here are some highlights from the CDCR press release (the full story is here):

SACRAMENTO - The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) announced today the intent to award a contract to EDS, an HP company, to begin a multimillion-dollar effort to automate and streamline offender data systems. The project, called the Strategic Offender Management System (SOMS), will consolidate existing databases and records and replace manual paper processes over a four year contract period. . . SOMS will replace more than 40 aging electronic and paper database systems, which are becoming increasingly difficult and costly to maintain. The system will contain an “Electronic C-file” for inmates and provide the opportunity for electronic data exchange--with Jails, Courts and the Office of Prison Healthcare Services.

This is an excellent idea. And, if this happens in the time allotted, and with the available resources, it could do wonderful things, such as make sure that folks aren't subject to parole/probation requirements in three counties at the same time.

Incidentally, it probably wouldn't be a bad thing to similarly improve the criminal court database, too. Currently, the data is on several different silos, and is rather inaccurate, which, among other problems, also hinder the ability to do research work on CA courts.

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