Illinois prisons will be closed to visitors for one day next week to allow officials to upgrade an outdated and cumbersome computer system.
The Southern Illinoisan reports that the Illinois Department of Corrections will begin the process of switching from its 30-year-old mainframe computer on Sunday, June 22. The $2 million dollar change could allow the agency to improve inmate health screening and to better coordinate inmate records with county jails.
IDOC spokesman Tom Shaer says it's amazing that the state's prison system is still using the technology first installed in the 1980s.
The agency oversees 48,000 prisoners and as many as 500 enter and leave every day. The state computer and Cook County record-keeping system cannot communicate - forcing workers to manually enter prisoner information.