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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 6, 2011
Contact: Caitlin E. Chamberlain
(207) 441-0501 

Secretary of State Charles E. Summers, Jr. Announces State of Maine Recognized for Two Award-Winning Online Services

AUGUSTA, Maine — Secretary of State Charlie Summers announced today that two Maine.gov online services, the Department of Corrections Online Money Deposit Service and the Judicial Branch Electronic Court Fine Payment Services, were recognized by the Center of Digital Government for Exceptional Service and Modernization in Portals and Online Services as part of their Best Fit Integrator awards program.

“Electronic services are enabling government to provide convenient services to the public in a cost-effective and streamlined way,” commented Summers. “I am extremely pleased at this recognition of Maine’s eGovernment efforts.”

Secretary Summers currently serves as chair for the InforME Board.  The InforME Board oversees the State of Maine’s contract with Maine Information Network, the service provider for Maine.gov, and reviews and approves all Service Level Agreements with state and municipal agencies.

The Center for Digital Government is a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. The Best Fit Integrator Recognition Awards is the Center's award program for government to recognize its private sector partners who work to tailor solutions to suit their unique needs.

The Maine Corrections Money Deposit Service, developed in partnership with Maine Information Network for the state, launched in December 2010. This online service enables friends and family to deposit money electronically into a prisoner’s or resident’s phone or trust account, allowing the prisoner or resident to call home or to purchase commissary items. Prior to this service, funds had to be mailed to the appropriate correctional facility for manual processing and disbursement to the individuals’ accounts. The service can be viewed online at www.maine.gov/online/correctionsdeposit.

“The new online service has already been highly successful, with more than 3,500 deposits made since December,” said Jody Breton, Department of Corrections Associate Commissioner. “We are very pleased with the results, and appreciative of the work done by Maine Information Network and by the State’s Office of Information Technology on this project.”

The Maine Judicial Branch partnered with Maine Information Network in 2009 to create dual phone-based (IVR) and web-based court fines payment services. Users can make a full or partial payment toward their Maine state court fine via Web or telephone. Prior to the electronic services, defendants had to appear at the courthouse to make a payment, mail a check or money order to the court, or call in to speak with a Court Clerk to pay over the phone. The service is available online at www.maine.gov/courtfines or by phone at 866-729-8499.

James T. Glessner, State Court Administrator said, "The 350 percent increase in online and IVR usage in the past year makes clear that the electronic services are a real convenience to the public, and we are grateful for the partnership with Maine Information Network, without whom this could not have been accomplished."

The parent company of Maine Information Network, NIC, Inc. was presented with the award in recognition for seven outstanding services developed in partnership with six different states, including the two services from Maine. Both of the Maine services were developed and are operated by Maine Information Network at no cost to the state.