Is the primary responsibility of the Division of Operations to receive, classify and house offenders who have been remanded to the custody of the Department of Corrections.
The objective of the AgriIndustries Revolving Fund, established in 1977, is to provide various food and dairy items to different governmental departments at a savings, while also offering to inmates jobs and training that can be utilized upon their release. AgriIndustries operates five dairy farms and satellite operations that produce crops to support the dairy herds and milk to meet the meal service needs of the department’s inmate population.
Products produced by AgriIndustries operations are purchased by the NJDOC, the Department of Human Services, the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and the Juvenile Justice Commission. In addition, products are produced in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture to assist the Feed the Hungry program, when surplus food items are available.
AgriIndustries has milk processing plants at Jones Farm and Bayside State Prison Farm as well as dairy herds located at Skillman Farm, Mountainview Youth Correctional Facility Farm and Albert C. Wagner Youth Correctional Facility Farm. In 2002, AgriIndustries rejoined the Holstein Association, which provides genetic tracking, registering of cows and interaction with breeding organizations. These and other services ensure that the state herds are raising outstanding animals.
AgriIndustries has meat and produce processing plants at South Woods State Prison. Staff at the meat plant produces an array of meat items, which include but are not limited to ground beef, hamburger patties, meat loaf, minute steaks, and poultry and pork products. Staff at the two produce plants prepares packaged salads and process fruit and vegetables for the regional production kitchen at South Woods State Prison as components for daily meals. Also, through interaction with the Department of Agriculture on the Jersey Fresh program, AgriIndustries utilizes a waiver to purchase overproduced or undervalued products for institutional menus.
The various AgriIndustries food production plants utilize and train about 100 inmates daily in all areas of food production technology. Inmates receive training and experience that may qualify them to gain employment when they leave the prison system.
AgriIndustries is a self-supporting operation without appropriated funds. Annual revenues total approximately $12 million, with substantial savings to all users.
The Capital Planning and Construction Unit determines or accesses NJDOC priorities relating to capital construction projects. The unit is responsible for the following information:
- The Monthly Financial Status Summary contains financial summaries for both capital and capital bond appropriations, which identify the status of appropriations as they relate to the cost of the individual capital projects. The report also provides the status of individual capital projects funded via capital appropriations, capital bond funds or institutional Direct State Services funding.
- The Annual Capital Budget is prepared for presentation to the New Jersey Commission on Capital Budgeting and Planning, and reflects the new and/or additional funding needs of the department for capital projects.
- The Institutional Capital Project/Priority Report provides a consolidated listing of capital/renovation needs of the department's 13 institutions and satellites and prioritizes the capital needs that are of the most immediate concern to each facility.
The Capital Planning and Construction Unit also coordinates the Agency Consultant Program. This program was established by the Division of Property Management and Construction in the Department of Treasury to assist client agencies in the planning, design and administration of small construction projects, in developing scopes of work for major capital construction projects, and in the investigation of infrastructure-related problems.
Central Medical and Transportation Unit – The unit was created in May 1986 to reduce overtime costs to the NJDOC. Central Transportation is responsible for the safe and secure transport of state‑sentenced inmates to and from the state adult and youth correctional facilities. Originally, the primary roles of the Central Transportation Unit and its sister program, the Central Medical Unit, were medical and criminal/civil/family/federal/ municipal court transports.
Central Transportation now is responsible for inter‑institutional transfers, emergency transfers, the Electronic Monitoring Program, the parole/immigration/Intensive Supervision Program and Adult Diagnostic and Treatment Center evaluations and hearings. The unit also is responsible for funerals, bedside visits, interstate escorts for all out‑of‑state prisoners, parole violators, escapees or interstate correction compact cases returning to New Jersey, pickup and delivery of institutional mail to and from Central Office, movement of inmate property and medical center discharges.
In addition, Central Transportation transports inmates involved in civil litigation where the inmate is to reimburse the state for transportation fees, in matters not involving their incarceration. The also unit transports sexually violent predators to and from their civil commitment hearings as well as medical appointments.
Central Medical is responsible for the safety and security of inmates housed at the St. Francis Medical Center Prison Unit, including the intensive care unit, cardiac care unit, labor and delivery, operating room, emergency room, step-down units and other outside facilities. The unit also escorts inmates throughout the facility while undergoing therapy, x-rays, radiation and follow-up care. Social services also are provided to inmates housed at this facility. These services include notification of death, critical status and various parole issues.
Central Communications Unit – In September 2002, the Central Communications Unit and Wants and Warrants Unit staff joined the staff at Central Medical/Transportation.
The unit provides radio transmissions and teletype communications for the NJDOC, State Parole Board, Juvenile Justice Commission, Intensive Supervision Program and Administrative Office of the Courts over a broad bandwidth. In addition, Central Communications monitors NJDOC inmates and parolees who are in the Electronic Monitoring Program. The unit also handles paging services to all Central Office employees and confidential paging for all NJDOC institutions, parole officers, Juvenile Justice Commission staff and Intensive Supervision Program staff. Motor vehicle inquiries are processed for the department’s Special Investigation Division and correctional facilities as well as State Parole Board and Juvenile Justice Commission investigations.
The Central Communications Unit also processes monthly validations of NJDOC escapees. The Wants and Warrants Unit is responsible for entering and clearing all absconders and wanted parolees. It also processes monthly validations of the 13 parole districts, Interstate Services, the Juvenile Justice Commission and the Parole Fugitive Unit.
Classification Support Unit – The unit is responsible for providing support and direction in various classification tasks, including max date sentence calculation support to institutional staff, assisting staff with special projects related to modifications in statute, providing on-site training as needed, providing institutional audits, and seeking and implementing agency advice from the Office of the Attorney General on issues requiring clarification or legal guidance. The unit provides technical support to Central Office executive and administrative staff in reconciling matters of dispute in the areas of classification. In addition, the unit is responsible for investigating and responding to correspondence associated with offender complaints.
In conjunction with the Office of Information and Technology, the Classification Support Unit continues to develop and support a Web site that provides information to the public regarding state-sentenced inmates, including the offender’s name, a description of the offense for which the offender is incarcerated and the facility in which the offender is incarcerated. The Web site provides quick access of information to victims, prosecutors and other interested parties regarding all offenders in the state system.
The Training/Auditing Unit also provides in-depth audits of institutional classification functions in an effort to verify that the policies, procedures and processes, as well as the various computerized information systems, are being efficiently utilized in each institution. Each audit consists of an on-site review to monitor all classification department operations, committee meetings and other relative work responsibilities to determine compliance with existing laws and policies, unit efficiency and productivity.
Additional Sentence Unit – The Classification Services Unit established the Additional Sentence Unit at Central Office to assist this department’s efforts in demonstrating the priority it places on the classification processes of meeting all statutory and administrative requirements. This unit centrally processes additional and amended sentences and provides updated calculations for the institutional classification departments to review. The Additional Sentence Unit ensures that all offenders in the custody of the NJDOC are confined and/or supervised according to the additional and/or amended order of the sentencing court; serves as a centralized source of offender information for staff, the public, and numerous state and federal agencies; and directs the statewide quality assurance and audit processes for time calculation, classification and case-management. It will, for example, ensure that statutory requirements are applied in a consistent manner regarding the application of credits and the sequencing of sentences.
The primary responsibility of the Field Services Unit (FSU) is to oversee and ensure the effectiveness of NJDOC food service operations through the provision of nutritionally adequate meals to the inmate population and employees of the department.
The FSU has several areas of administrative responsibility:
- Food Service Management coordinates efforts to control the NJDOC food expenditures. Using the central menu, the FSU works with AgriIndustries food production plants, the DEPTCOR bakery, the New Jersey Department of Treasury Purchase Bureau, and the Distribution and Support Services in establishing contracts with vendors to monitor and manage food costs at each institution. Additionally, the FSU manages a Waiver of Advertising that provides the department with a mechanism to purchase high-quality, wholesome food products at below market price, resulting in a significant reduction to the cost of inmate feeding.
- AgriIndustries is responsible for the effectiveness of the AgriIndustries farming operations, and milk, meat and produce processing plants, which support the NJDOC central menu requirements.
- The South Woods Central Food Production Facility manages the development and directs the operation of the food production plant. This cook-chill facility has been a valuable resource to the NJDOC, providing 28 different meal components to each correctional facility, totaling 2.6 million portions each month. The cook-chill meal production process has provided increased production of meal components using larger batches and longer product shelf life, and saved money by purchasing ingredients in bulk and standardizing meal quality. Management of this operation requires developing new products; coordinating product expansion with NJDOC facilities; and accounting for inventory control and product distribution with DEPTCOR warehouse and trucking operations, AgriIndustries’ produce and meat processing plants and the Department of Treasury Purchase Bureau, and Distribution and Support Services.
- The Nutritional Consultation Unit is responsible for developing and promoting quality nutritional care services based on the overall needs of the inmate population, in accordance with policies, procedures, practice, guidelines, licensure, legislation and standards of professional practice. The consulting dietitian plans and coordinates efforts with NJDOC clinical dietitians to ensure that individual therapeutic nutritional needs are met.
- The Child Nutrition Program ensures that the NJDOC meets state and federal guidelines required to participate in the Child Nutrition Program and that the consulting dietitian conducts audits of the participating facilities and fulfills the necessary monthly reporting requirements to the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Child Nutrition. The NJDOC receives federal reimbursement of approximately $600,000 annually and surplus USDA food commodities.
- The Sanitation/Waste Management/Recycling Program makes cost-effective recommendations to facilities in an effort to achieve the most efficient sanitation, waste
management and recycling efforts, which are incorporated into state waste removal and recycling contracts, and communicated with the Department of Health. The unit provides oversight of the Department of Health Chapter 24 sanitation inspections and Department of Environmental Protection requirements. Increasing waste recycling activity at all facilities, as well as the Central Office, has effectively reduced waste, resulting in lesser waste disposal costs. Administration of this effort entails institutional program oversight, monitoring, data collection and department reporting. The NJDOC currently recycles approximately 30 percent of its waste stream.
In addition to the aforementioned areas of responsibility, the FSU provides recommendations to the Department of Treasury to ensure cost-effectiveness for contracts for various food items, food service equipment, waste removal, dishwashing, janitorial and laundry chemicals, inmate shoes, multi-material recycling, pest control, coffee dispensing systems and edible plate waste. The unit is also responsible for the administration of the central laundry at Albert C. Wagner Youth Correctional Facility, and the distribution of USDA foods and surplus equipment on a system-wide basis. Contacts with other state agencies are established and maintained to ascertain if non-food surplus property of value is available to the NJDOC, and to relocate equipment internally that is no longer useful to individual facilities. The FSU in cooperation with AgriIndustries and DEPTCOR, manages a foodcommodities acquisition and distribution
program. Quality, reduced-cost products acquired from various sources, such as Jersey Fresh Farmers, the Department of Agriculture and the private sector, are provided to NJDOC facilities.
The Health Services Unit establishes NJDOC procedure regarding the provision of medical, dental, nursing, pharmacy and mental health care services of inmates held in state custody. The unit monitors professional services to insure compliance with applicable rules, regulations and statutes related to inmate healthcare, with a goal of assuring that community standards are maintained.
The unit’s Quality Assurance Section develops formal auditing instruments that allow for the performance of objective audits of all areas of inmate healthcare services. Activities and records are reviewed, and reports are created and made available to appropriate administrative authorities.
In addition, the Health Services Unit serves as a link to other state agencies and appropriate community organizations regarding professional healthcare matters. The unit has been represented in bodies such as the Governor’s AIDS Advisory Council, Hepatitis C Advisory Panel and the New Jersey Mental Health Planning Council. The unit also serves as a link to professional colleagues regarding correctional healthcare matters on a regional and national basis.
Immigration Services Unit – A cooperative effort between the NJDOC, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the Executive Office of Immigration Review (EOIR) enables ICE and EOIR to begin deportation proceedings for aggravated felons and other criminal aliens while they are still incarcerated. This procedure ensures, in many cases, rapid removal upon the completion of the alien's sentence. The primary functions of the Immigration Services Unit include identifying foreign-born offenders when they are state identified; referring them to ICE to determine if the offender is subject to deportation; categorizing each identified offender by those in whom ICE has interest and those that it does not; processing applicable no-interest letters, interest letters and detainers; and monitoring each identified offender as he or she progresses through the removal process (now done essentially by VTC hearings, which are coordinated by this unit). Staff members also serve as liaisons with the Intensive Supervision Program to identify applicants who are foreign born with ICE interest to ensure that those offenders are not erroneously released from custody to supervision. In conjunction with the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP), the NJDOC received a federal grant of $4,990,601 (November 2010) for the housing of criminal aliens who meet the guidelines of the program for the period of July 1, 2008 – June 20, 2009.
Parole Monitoring Unit– In collaboration with the State Parole Board, the Parole Monitoring Unit ensures departmental compliance with the Parole Settlement Agreement; ensures that pre-parole packages are processed in a timely manner, in compliance with Administrative Code; monitors administrative parole holds to determine trends relative to the reasons for the hold, as well as the operational and fiscal impact on the NJDOC. Staff members work collaboratively with members of the State Parole Board in the implementation and expansion of the 2010 reentry bills, including the parole contract. This unit also coordinates efforts with the State Parole Board and Juvenile Justice Commission to ensure that juveniles housed within the NJDOC are afforded due process rights with regard to their more expansive opportunities to be heard by the State Parole Board, as well as issues with terms of post-incarceration supervision.
Office of Interstate Services – The office is responsible for administering all matters under the Interstate Corrections Compact, Interstate Agreement on Detainers, and International Transfer treaties, including the negotiation of contracts to ensure compliance from each party state, the review and acceptance of reciprocal transfers, the development of assurances from other countries, interpreting state and federal statute relative to interstate matters, acting as the liaison with the Governor's Extradition Secretary, and providing training to county prosecutors' offices, sheriffs offices and county jail staff. In addition, the office is involved in the related or ancillary tasks in the area of interstate and international extradition of fugitives and escapees, and the maintenance of a caseload of more than 450 offenders serving concurrent New Jersey sentences in another state or jurisdiction, and New Jersey offenders serving their sentences in the Federal Witness Protection Program. The Corrections Compact has been an increasingly useful tool to separate those high-ranking Security Threat Group (STG) offenders and placing them in states’ where their power is neutralized, as well as allowing for general population placement of former STG offenders who have been labeled as informants, in states’ where their status is unknown.
The Release Notification Unit was developed in May 2000 to oversee and supervise the institutional release and prosecutor notification processes for all offenders sentenced to the custody of the NJDOC. The unit ensures that all offenders with convictions for current and/or prior sex offenses are properly identified and registered under the terms of Megan’s Law and that those identified as potential predators are referred for civil commitment evaluation in accordance with the Sexually Violent Predator Act. The unit also ensures that offenders with psychiatric histories are identified and reviewed for general forensic commitment. The Release Notification Unit is the NJDOC’s sex offender liaison for the State of New Jersey and is responsible for a computerized tracking system developed to monitor the movement of approximately 3,600 convicted sex offenders through the state’s correctional system. The tracking system provides weekly updates of detailed data and ensures in an automated fashion that offenders with convictions for current and/or prior sex offenses, or those with psychiatric histories, are properly alerted and tracked within the computer system.
The Release Notification Unit also develops policies, directives and procedures in accordance with various state and federal statutes to ensure standardization and uniformity. In addition, the unit transmits to county prosecutors each year an annual report that includes the following information: the total number of offenders released with convictions for current and/or prior sex offenses; the total number of inmates released who were required to register under Megan’s Law; and the number of cases that were involuntarily committed under the civil commitment laws. Additionally, comparisons are made as to the number of releases from the previous calendar year.
The Special Operations Group provides NJDOC facilities with the tactical and technical support that is required during a crisis situation. The unit is a liaison with the State of New Jersey’s Office of Emergency Management and also maintains mutual aid agreements with local, state and federal law enforcements agencies.
Special Operations areas of responsibility include the Urban Area Secure Initiative, Office of Emergency Management, Continuation of Operations & Continuation of Government and Homeland Security, Domestic Preparedness.
The Special Operations Group is comprised of several entities.
- Special Operations Response Team (SORT) – The 15-person team consists of a variety of skills, including EMTs, Breachers, Marksman, Chemical Agents, Defensive Tactics, Repelling, Security Threat Group (STG) Identification, Mobile Field Force and Tactical Operators.
- Canine Unit – Units are deployed throughout the state on a daily basis. The Canine Unit, consisting of 14 handlers and 26 canines, can perform a variety of tasks, from narcotic searches of people and property, to the tracking of criminals, as well as missing persons. Other functions include explosive device detection, cellular phone detection, evidence recovery, criminal apprehension, and passive and aggressive scent detection. The unit also provides demonstrations to schools and civic organizations.
- Correctional Emergency Response Team (CERT)– The team consists of facility-based members from the Northern, Central and Southern regions of New Jersey. The primary duties are large-scale disturbance control, tactical search operations, large-scale support of the New Jersey State Police and Office of Emergency Management and support functions of SORT.
- Departmental Firearms Unit – The unit consists of two certified armorers and a supervisor. Their duties include overseeing the repair and maintenance of all NJDOC firearms and providing tactical and technical support to NJDOC regional ranges, academy ranges as well as all NJDOC facilities throughout the state.
- Critical Incident Negotiation Team (CINT) – The team consists of both custody and civilian NJDOC staff. These negotiators have been trained and certified by the FBI and have the necessary equipment and experience to carry out negotiations during critical incident situations.
- Enhanced Security Transportation Unit – The unit coordinates high-risk transports, including court trips, medical trips and transfers from county jails. The unit also coordinates transportation with outside agencies.
- Community Labor Assistance Program – The program is responsible for providing inmate labor support to municipalities, governmental agencies and community based non-profit organizations. Both state and municipal government agencies utilize inmate labor support in an effort to reduce operational costs and save tax dollars. Inmate labor teams provide service, five days a week, to a majority of New Jersey counties throughout the state.
Inmate labor support is a staple for several state agencies, including Transportation (DOT), Human Services (DHS) and Environmental Protection (DEP). Collectively, these three areas alone utilize 21 labor teams on a permanent basis. This resource has proven to be a practical, cost-effective measure to alleviate spending and operational costs.
Inmate labor crews that provide landscaping, janitorial work and special projects to many of the state’s developmental centers are assigned to the DHS. Also, through a partnership with the DEP, that agency’s Clean Shores Program is supported by inmate labor. In addition, inmate labor crews support the federal government at Fort Dix and a crew is permanently assigned to the State Police. Other state agencies receiving support from the Community Labor Assistance Program include the Departments of Community Affairs, Military and Veterans Affairs, Agriculture and Treasury.