© 2022 Western New York Public Broadcasting Association

140 Lower Terrace
Buffalo, NY 14202

Mailing Address:
Horizons Plaza P.O. Box 1263
Buffalo, NY 14240-1263

Buffalo Toronto Public Media | Phone 716-845-7000
WBFO Newsroom | Phone: 716-845-7040
Your NPR Station
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Donate Today Banner

Erie County Holding Center implements new cash-bail payments system

WBFO News file photo

 The Erie County Holding Center has a new way for making bail payments.  The County Sheriff's Office has implemented a cash bail payment system that can be accessed on-line or by phone.

Streamlining the payment process for families and inmates in posting bail has gone high-tech at the Holding Center.

"It opens another opportunity for someone to make bail," said Robert Koch , Superintendent of the Office of Jail Management Division for the Erie County Holding Center.

Processing inmates who have been granted bail for a charge or charges against them is now a mouse click away for family members or friends who would be making a bail payment on behalf of an inmate.  A major credit, debit or prepaid debit cards can be used 24/7 to post bail.

"Hopefully that ease of bailing somebody out, not having to come down to the jail or the court house can assist us in lower the jail population.  Makes it easier to be bailed out," said Koch.

Reducing  the inmate population would prevent those who have been granted bail from spending a night or weekend in jail when banks are  closed.  But Koch says in no way is response to any of the recent mistaken releases of some Holding Center inmates.

"Should not be any correlation.  They way it works a person on the outside can call or log in.  They need the incarcerated persons date of birth, name.  where their court date is and amount of bail. That's verified through the jail records. The deposit is made into the county's bank account and the money is received almost instantaneously," said Koch. "It's not a brand new system, but it was recently upgrade."

The Sheriff's Department calls it a win-win that will ultimately save taxpayers money.