A new bail payment processing procedure effective April 16, 2014 could help Sarasota residents who have been granted bail avoid spending unnecessary time in prison. Under the new policy, bail payments of up to $750 can be made via GovPayNet using credit, debit or prepaid cards. Prior to Wednesday morning, individuals who were granted bail were sometimes forced to spend the night or weekend in jail if the banks were not open and cash was not accessible at the time of their arrest. This was especially true on holidays.
Not only were events like this heartbreaking for inmates who might have wished to spend the holidays at home, but the unnecessary incarceration of inmates who simply couldn’t access bail money due to timing issues was an incredible burden on Sarasota taxpayers as well. GovPayNet has eliminated one of the problems that can be attributed to prison overcrowding. The service they provide can be utilized by bail payers who are incarcerated or friends and family members of arrestees. The payment service is designed to accept payments 24 hours a day seven days a week. The payments can be made in person, over the phone or by logging on to the internet site. Spanish speaking inmates can access their bilingual customer service representatives for payment processing.
GovPayNet has managed to eliminate the language barrier, the timing barrier, and the money accessibility barrier often associated with bail payments all at once and is subsequently becoming a widely used booking and corrections service. GovPayNet currently provides services for more than 650 correctional systems and Sarasota, Florida has decided to join the list. The Sarasota County Sherriff is thrilled with his decision and claims it will save a great number of tax dollars in the future.
Prison overcrowding has played a huge part in the national financial crisis. Much of the overcrowding stems from problems with simple resolutions such as people who are in jail because their bank closed early on the night they got arrested. Having a quick and convenient bail payment method is definitely a step in the right direction on Sarasota’s part. According to GovPayNet the service is of no cost to the agencies that use it.
Other services provided by the same company include fast, easy ways to pay traffic tickets, court fines and fees, and property taxes. All of these services operate 24 hours a day and seven days a week. Service is available in more than 170 languages. In order to make a bail payment through PayGovNet, you will need a credit or debit card, the card holder’s name, the CVV number and a pay location code. Sarasota law enforcement can supply you with the pay location, which is a four digit number used to identify the Sarasota County Jail. If you are making a payment for a friend or family member who is currently incarcerated, you will need to have their information on hand as well.