View Full Version : Inmate Package Program? We can send gifts to our loved ones?


Pages : [1] 2

JPrasil
08-29-2011, 02:29 PM
Once again I'm going through House Bill 1 where everyone talks about the minutes and I'm searching through the Amendments and this one pops up:

Amend CSHB 1, Article V, page V-11, Strategy C.1.5., Department of Criminal Justice by adding the Inmate Package Program. The Department shall institute an inmate package program to allow family members and friends to purchase and ship gifts to inmates though authorized vendors. The program shall be open to all qualified vendors who can demonstrate the proper package security and background checks of employees.

(a) Qualified vendors must agree to dedicate a percent of all purchases made through the inmate package program to the credit of the State's General Fund. The percent will be determined by the Texas Board of Criminal Justice.

(b) No later than September 1, 2011, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice shall institute the inmate package program.

http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodo...00001H2185.HTM (http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodocs/82R/amendments/html/HB00001H2185.HTM)

I'm very curious about this! As no one really speaks about this but yet we speak about the phone minutes. Any thoughts? Opinions? Knowledge about it?

Olympia
08-29-2011, 02:52 PM
I am curious about this too. I have been reading around in here for weeks but can`t find anything about this.

montysmom
08-29-2011, 03:28 PM
Once again I'm going through House Bill 1 where everyone talks about the minutes and I'm searching through the Amendments and this one pops up:

Amend CSHB 1, Article V, page V-11, Strategy C.1.5., Department of Criminal Justice by adding the Inmate Package Program. The Department shall institute an inmate package program to allow family members and friends to purchase and ship gifts to inmates though authorized vendors. The program shall be open to all qualified vendors who can demonstrate the proper package security and background checks of employees.

(a) Qualified vendors must agree to dedicate a percent of all purchases made through the inmate package program to the credit of the State's General Fund. The percent will be determined by the Texas Board of Criminal Justice.

(b) No later than September 1, 2011, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice shall institute the inmate package program.

http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodo...00001H2185.HTM (http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodocs/82R/amendments/html/HB00001H2185.HTM)

I'm very curious about this! As no one really speaks about this but yet we speak about the phone minutes. Any thoughts? Opinions? Knowledge about it?
I believe they use to have this years ago, if I remember correctly. I use to send my son a package of things and I think I mentioned on here before that not all items reached him. I think I use to send him a letter with a list of everything in the box and that way he would know what was missing and take action on it. I don't know why this was stopped as I would like to send some contact solution right now. We could send winter clothing back then also, which was nice.

montysmom
08-29-2011, 03:36 PM
JPrasil, are you thinking that the deal would be that we make our purchases and then take them to a UPS or Pak&Ship etc. and let them pack and ship it.??? Because I thought I packed it before and mailed it and then the mail room opened and inspected it when it arrived at the prison. Looks like if this bill goes through the mail room will have to hire more help.

acro
08-29-2011, 03:41 PM
Montysmom - I seriously doubt that they will let us pack and ship them although I would love that. I bet that we have to order them from a certain vendor and let them pack and ship it. My thought on this is because they won't even let us go buy a magazine or book and sent it from us, we have to send it through the bookstore or wherever we ordered it from. Just a thought.

montysmom
08-29-2011, 03:44 PM
Montysmom - I seriously doubt that they will let us pack and ship them although I would love that. I bet that we have to order them from a certain vendor and let them pack and ship it. My thought on this is because they won't even let us go buy a magazine or book and sent it from us, we have to send it through the bookstore or wherever we ordered it from. Just a thought.
Wonder how we will find out the info. on vendors etc?? I am sure you are right acro, but this is not the way it was done before. You know they will be going through it no matter where it comes from.:thumbsup:

acro
08-29-2011, 03:48 PM
And what sucks for the vendors it that it says that they have to agree to give TDC a percentage of the purchase. That does not seem quite fair to me, but then it is TDC. Why do they deserve any of the money? But, I would still send stuff if we get to.

Longwait13
08-29-2011, 03:55 PM
I'm not Texas but I just did this package program for my man in Massachusetts. I had to go through a pre-approved website to order my man's package. And if you don't have internet access your loved one can mail you home a form that he has filled out for what he wants and you put your payment in with the form and send it to this same company. I was only allowed to choose from one company. In MA we are allowed to send a summer package and one in the winter. I hope this is helpful.

JPrasil
08-29-2011, 04:03 PM
Okay, I came across some more info. A TIFA Rep with to TDCJ Quarterly meeting in Huntsville and this is what she stated about it, "I don't know the particulars, but we did discuss the gift packages at the Quarterly Meeting in Huntsville last Friday. Gifts will be restricted to TDCJ approved providers . . . mostly packages with special foods, nuts, etc. They said not to expect Hickory Farms! :)"

Hope this gives some insight and/or ideal about what's going on!

grmnclt_gurl
08-30-2011, 03:37 AM
I remember last year (before Halloween, I think) there had been a petition here that we signed, but when it seemed that it had not gotten anywhere it kinda slipped my mind. Thanx for finding this. I'm very curious to see how it materializes.

montysmom
08-30-2011, 11:27 AM
As I researched this a little, it seems to be one company that has the bulk of the business across America. Some of the things in other states seem like quite an extensive list of items. If that happens in Texas, I can see our guys getting mad if they have special things sent to them by their family and then a shakedown occurs and it gets all busted up. It seemed to be more of a security risk in Texas, depending, they say, on the amount of packages being sent, and of course, they have no way of knowing what the amount would be.

JPrasil
08-30-2011, 01:00 PM
As I researched this a little, it seems to be one company that has the bulk of the business across America. Some of the things in other states seem like quite an extensive list of items. If that happens in Texas, I can see our guys getting mad if they have special things sent to them by their family and then a shakedown occurs and it gets all busted up. It seemed to be more of a security risk in Texas, depending, they say, on the amount of packages being sent, and of course, they have no way of knowing what the amount would be.

That's a good point or two or three! Sure they will figure it out how to regulate it. They regulate correspondence materials and books being sent to them so, I presume they can regulate this. I don't think TDCJ will go overboard with allowing special things being sent--probably keep it simple to food items or whatnot. It's a start.

Y25
08-30-2011, 01:20 PM
There was some discussion on PTO about these "care packages" back when the legislative session was ending. As I recall, the proposal was always about sending pre-approved items from vendors specifically approved by TDCJ for this purpose, much like many counties do. For example, here in Collin County you can order from a selection of pre-packaged food items offered by a specified vendor and have those sent to an inmate in the county facility. I don't believe there was ever any proposal to the legislature about family members packaging and directly sending their own individually purchased items to an inmate.

But I thought we had been told that the proposal died, so I am glad to hear that it didn't. Thanks for the update, jprasil!

texnanny
08-31-2011, 10:24 AM
I would love to be able to send any kind of package, especially around holidays....Nice way to let them know they are still part of the family. Hope we can keep up with this and know if it comes to be.

JAE'sWifey
09-01-2011, 05:14 AM
If this goes into effect today, where can we find out information about the approved vendors?

JPrasil
09-01-2011, 12:45 PM
I know that the vendors have until today to sealed the contract today with TDCJ. I don't think this will happen all of a sudden today but sometime either this year or early next year once things are finalized.

keith74mom
09-01-2011, 03:13 PM
I was hoping this would become reality. Thanks for the info.



I know that the vendors have until today to sealed the contract today with TDCJ. I don't think this will happen all of a sudden today but sometime either this year or early next year once things are finalized.

ReggiesLady
09-02-2011, 09:42 AM
I spoke to the head lady over commissary today in Huntsville about this very thing and the program is in the works. They are currently waiting on bids from vendors for different bundles they will offer etc but hope to have the website up and running by November, in time for the holidays. Yipee!!

ReggiesLady
09-02-2011, 09:43 AM
One extra tidbit: There will be a link on the texas.gov website (somewhere) and that's where we will order the items. The items will then be distributed to the inmate by commissary on their unit.

JPrasil
09-02-2011, 10:29 AM
Thank you ladies for the update! Yippee in time for the holidays!

kf'slady
09-02-2011, 11:03 PM
I can not wait for this law to spring into action so thanks for the updated info ladies!

rick74103
09-03-2011, 07:43 AM
Any program to help inmates and their families is a good idea. Supposedly criminals are sent to prison to become reformed, but the system doesn't seem to work all that well. Maybe by implementing more programs that show a little more compassion and concern will lead to a healthier attitude and greater willingness of inmates wanting to change their lives.

KathleenTX
09-03-2011, 10:56 AM
Please keep us posted of any information you find on this. I don't care how much I am ready to be able to send something. Esp. now with them starting to take funds for medical out of the money I send. At least we would have the idea of truly being able to send a gift.

marcsdad
09-03-2011, 02:48 PM
One extra tidbit: There will be a link on the texas.gov website (somewhere) and that's where we will order the items. The items will then be distributed to the inmate by commissary on their unit.
I just spoke to my son at the Goree unit. He told me that there is a prison radio program and they talked about this very thing. The woman on the program said that the website should be up and running by the first of November and family would be able to order such things as tennis shoes, T-shirts, shorts etc. and pay for them in advance and then they would be sent to the units and given to our loved ones through their store visits. He also said it was also stated on the same program that the minutes for their phone use will increase to the 480 a month on the 28th of September.

JPrasil
09-03-2011, 09:49 PM
I just spoke to my son at the Goree unit. He told me that there is a prison radio program and they talked about this very thing. The woman on the program said that the website should be up and running by the first of November and family would be able to order such things as tennis shoes, T-shirts, shorts etc. and pay for them in advance and then they would be sent to the units and given to our loved ones through their store visits. He also said it was also stated on the same program that the minutes for their phone use will increase to the 480 a month on the 28th of September.

Thanks for the update! It's very nice to know! Look forward to the "positive" changes!

charlotte98
09-03-2011, 10:02 PM
*Happiness*

ReggiesLady
09-06-2011, 08:25 AM
I just spoke to my son at the Goree unit. He told me that there is a prison radio program and they talked about this very thing. The woman on the program said that the website should be up and running by the first of November and family would be able to order such things as tennis shoes, T-shirts, shorts etc. and pay for them in advance and then they would be sent to the units and given to our loved ones through their store visits. He also said it was also stated on the same program that the minutes for their phone use will increase to the 480 a month on the 28th of September.


That lady on the prison radio program was me. :D

Y25
09-06-2011, 02:43 PM
That lady on the prison radio program was me. :D

And you always have good information for us, ReggiesLady!

I'm so glad to hear that the program is going to allow us to send things other than food items. It seems that whenever my boyfriend tries to buy shoes, etc from commissary he is told they are out of them and there never seems to be any idea of when they might be getting them. It will be great for me to order what he needs and know that he can pick it up at commissary!

Celest0721
09-11-2011, 09:17 AM
Any program to help inmates and their families is a good idea. Supposedly criminals are sent to prison to become reformed, but the system doesn't seem to work all that well. Maybe by implementing more programs that show a little more compassion and concern will lead to a healthier attitude and greater willingness of inmates wanting to change their lives.

agree 100%

Cara1947
09-11-2011, 02:02 PM
PLEASE . . . praying for food pkgs that contain dried fruit and fresh nuts. I asked my hubby what he would want if this went through . . . FOOOOOOOOD! He hasn't met a fresh fruit or veggie since he got there! What they have it overcooked and were probably fresh last year.

malewis1948
09-21-2011, 01:40 PM
Would love to send my son packages.

babette
09-26-2011, 12:56 PM
One extra tidbit: There will be a link on the texas.gov website (somewhere) and that's where we will order the items. The items will then be distributed to the inmate by commissary on their unit.

Do you know if this will also be something to use for the Death Row population? Please let me know asap since a lot of guys there really crave to know....thanks in advance!

KathleenTX
09-26-2011, 08:42 PM
All I can find so far is a bid request for commisary items. It is located at:

http://esbd.cpa.state.tx.us/bid_show.cfm?bidid=96878

Click on the PACKAGE and you will see what they are looking for.

julylady58
10-27-2011, 08:52 PM
I really appreciate all of the information you all have posted. My husband heard on the local prison talk radio that care packages (by a certain vendor) were going to be available, so now we have had it confirmed. But the 480 minutes I heard died on the Lege floor? But my husband's fellow inmates have been hearing the rumors about the care package and then November 1st was mentioned.... any more news?

julylady58
10-27-2011, 09:02 PM
The information about the TDCJ Offender's care packages being allowed is on the Texas.gov website (http://www.lbb.state.tx.us/Senate_Conference/Articles/Article%205/Article%205%20Rider%20Comparison%20Packet.pdf) It is supposed to be input as of September 2011.
Not later than September 1, 2011, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice shall institute the inmate package program in Strategy C.1.5, Institutional Services.

x4livin
11-03-2011, 05:08 AM
Do we know any more about this since it's after November 1st?

ElizabethRose
11-18-2011, 11:23 AM
And what sucks for the vendors it that it says that they have to agree to give TDC a percentage of the purchase. That does not seem quite fair to me, but then it is TDC. Why do they deserve any of the money? But, I would still send stuff if we get to.

Oh, I wouldn't feel so sorry for the vendor since I'm certain they will pass on that percentage to those making the purchase.

Kay
11-18-2011, 12:51 PM
I just searched for this on the internet but didn't find anything yet. Hopefully soon since the holidays are coming.

Y25
11-18-2011, 03:31 PM
I believe the latest information is that the care packages won't be available until 2012, so unfortunately, I don't think we can count on them for the holidays this year.

longlostlove82
11-22-2011, 01:13 PM
I emailed TDCJ about this and this is the email I got back today:

We have just finished evaluating new items for next fiscal year that we
will begin ordering September 1st. However, if some of the packaged items
can be added sooner, we are going to try to work them into our product line
in the next couple of months. The state purchasing process is not a fast
one, but we will do the best we can. The package items along with
approximately 100 other commissary items will be available to purchase
on-line sometime in March or April. We are still working on setting this
up and think it will be a really good program for friends and family
members to purchase items directly for your loved ones. Once you make an
on-line purchase, the inmate will pick up their order at the unit
commissary on their regular scheduled day. These direct purchases will be
limited to $50 each calendar quarter. Once we have this program up and
running, we would like to add additional special purchase periods, like an
extra $50 purchase during the fourth quarter for the holidays. We are
excited about adding new products and services for friends and family and
think this will turn out to be a really good program for all involved.

Let me know if you have any additional questions. Hope you have a good
Thanksgiving.

Eric R. Johnston
Director, Commissary & Trust Fund Department
Texas Department of Criminal Justice
(936)437-4772

Too bad it won't be this year. :(

Ytisgirl
11-22-2011, 01:26 PM
Thank you for sharing. At least now maybe we will have something to look forward to

Celest0721
11-26-2011, 07:20 PM
Thanks for the update we were just talking about this today.

TexanCO
11-27-2011, 03:24 AM
What in particular would you, the LO's of offenders, like to see offered during the holidays or even year round?

Sunflow
11-27-2011, 06:58 AM
What in particular would you, the LO's of offenders, like to see offered during the holidays or even year round?

Fresh fruits!

Cara1947
11-27-2011, 08:24 AM
I think Reggieslady was keeping a hand on the pulse. Last news I heard was NOT for the holidays now . . . TDCJ can't do anything in six months! . . . but shortly after the first of the year.

Hey, whoever wins the contract will just up the prices 10% to cover their "contribution" so no worries! LOL

Haven't heard any specifics of what kind of things may be on the list . . . my hubby's first request was WHITE SWEATS 'cause he's cold all winter long! I hope there'll be some HEALTHY food we can send . . . dried fruit would be nice, some nuts . . . . canned meat other than tuna . . . but that's probably dreaming! I just hope we can build our own packages . . . mine is diabetic, so all that wonderful chocolate doesn't work for us.

EVERYONE is keeping an eye out, both inside and here, so I'm sure when it's a done-deal we'll all hear!

montysmom
11-30-2011, 05:50 AM
What in particular would you, the LO's of offenders, like to see offered during the holidays or even year round?

Warm clothing for the winter, and as everyone else is askiing for fresh fruit, better quality snacks.

Nina Perez
11-30-2011, 05:55 AM
what is the "gift coupon program payment" , or do I just use regular money transfer for the holidays, I heard they were not taking out money for the inmates for fees.</SPAN>

emt_622
11-30-2011, 11:20 AM
Does anyone know of a web site other than Texas prison store to order more stuff for Texas inmates

x4livin
11-30-2011, 12:45 PM
What in particular would you, the LO's of offenders, like to see offered during the holidays or even year round?

Protein foods. Nuts etc. Dried fruit. Vitamins and OTC cold tabs. Powdered milk. Cheese spread. Summer sausage. Beef jerky. Things that you can live off of and still get enough vitamins and minerals.
Thermals. Shoes. Boots.

rlwhitmore
12-02-2011, 10:20 PM
Yes...more healthy foods. My son weighs less now (he's been in 2 years) than when he was a meth addict! Now that's bad! I try to send at least 25.00 a month, but that doesn't go far. I still get so upset when I think about the inmates food being one of the first cuts when they cut the budget!

x4livin
12-14-2011, 03:02 AM
I doubt fresh fruit will make it in..maybe not dried friut..due to the fact that they can make alcohol out of it. But it's a nice wish.

Star_Loving
12-20-2011, 01:37 PM
My son wrote asking me if I heard anything on this has anyone heard any updates?

LanaJo
12-20-2011, 03:50 PM
I haven't seen anything new on it yet.

Daren's wife
12-20-2011, 05:50 PM
Has anyone heard if this is true?

Y25
12-21-2011, 02:26 PM
It is true that they will be offering packages that you can purchase and send directly from some TDCJ-approved vendors, but the program won't begin until sometime in early 2012.

Ytisgirl
12-24-2011, 05:10 AM
I got word from my fiancé. What he said is order after Jan 1. Limit $50 for food items n unlimited for hygiene. I haven't confirmed yet but he listed tdcj.com/gov/org may have to play with actual address

ReggiesLady
12-27-2011, 08:22 AM
The latest update I received was last week and they are now not saying when the site will be up and running. We will be able to purchase $50 worth of items every 3 months. There was some confusion on whether these would be items not on the commissary list and I was able to confirm the items that will be offered are NOT CURRENTLY on the commissary lists but WILL be added once the program is up. According to Huntsville, depending on how well the packages/sell of items goes, they may eventually look at expanding the program but that's left to be seen. Also, the $50 will NOT go against their spend so please tell them not to worry about that.

The problem right now is that while TDCJ is still working with vendors to get the packages together etc., the great state of Texas is having another agency develop the website. If you work for the state like I do, you know that once agency doesn't know what the other is doing so it slows things up. HOpefully, it will be all smoothed out soon though. That's all I know for right now.

thelittlemozart
01-09-2012, 06:24 AM
Hello, my name is Diana and I´m from Germany. I have a pen pal in the Polunsky Unit Livingston. I hope you could help me with a question. My pen pal wants like a book, unfortunately, the book is only available in hardcover. Can I send a hardcover book on Amazon? Is this allowed? Or just paperbacks? The opinions are not all equal. Some say yes, others say no! I hope you can help.
Thank you very much and Greetings to Amerika:)
Diana

KSmith
01-09-2012, 02:01 PM
Hello, my name is Diana and I´m from Germany. I have a pen pal in the Polunsky Unit Livingston. I hope you could help me with a question. My pen pal wants like a book, unfortunately, the book is only available in hardcover. Can I send a hardcover book on Amazon? Is this allowed? Or just paperbacks? The opinions are not all equal. Some say yes, others say no! I hope you can help.
Thank you very much and Greetings to Amerika:)
Diana

The best thing would be to call the unit itself and ask them. I wondered about that myself as I had seen some books for my hubby on Amazon but they were only available in hardcover. My husband is at Garza West and they are allowed there. Hope this helps.

Tklvn
01-10-2012, 11:32 AM
KSmith is right. You need to call the mail room of that unit and ask them. Some allow hardbacks and some don't.

KSmith
01-13-2012, 05:21 PM
Another bit of advice because I learned the hard way you will want to ask the mailroom if the book and author are approved. If not it will be denied and they will either have to send it back to you or destroy it.

mambo
01-16-2012, 01:37 PM
Hello, my name is Diana and I´m from Germany. I have a pen pal in the Polunsky Unit Livingston. I hope you could help me with a question. My pen pal wants like a book, unfortunately, the book is only available in hardcover. Can I send a hardcover book on Amazon? Is this allowed? Or just paperbacks? The opinions are not all equal. Some say yes, others say no! I hope you can help.
Thank you very much and Greetings to Amerika:)
Diana

I've sent hardcover books to Polunsky unit in the past. They probably still accept them, but you could call and ask to make sure anyway.

KSmith
01-21-2012, 07:42 PM
i was just wondering if there has been any news on when the packages will be available?

KathleenTX
01-25-2012, 11:18 AM
Any update or link yet?

pennydc1
01-25-2012, 07:09 PM
Over on jpay they have been saying that the package program has been trashed. I hope that is wrong but that's the word over there.

aaochoa21
01-27-2012, 07:48 PM
Any info on the care package program? My husband is wanting thermals

montysmom
01-31-2012, 07:20 AM
Any info on the care package program? My husband is wanting thermals
The thermals may or may not be in the vendors package, if we do get the package program. He can buy themals at commissary, seems like they were 5 or 6 dollars for top or bottoms. They may have gone up a lot now though.

Rachel
01-31-2012, 02:48 PM
Dave from The Prison Show has just posted this:

This just in, in response to our requests regarding this program, Jason Clark, PIO for TDCJ in conjunction with Mr. Eric Johnson, Director of the Commissary and Trust Fund Department have released the following statement. They have declined our requests to discuss this on the program.

The TDCJ Commissary and Trust Fund Department will soon initiate a direct
purchase program for friends and family members to allow them to make
online purchases for offenders. These purchases will be from the existing
product line along with some new packaged items that will be added.
Offenders can receive one direct purchase of $50 or less each calendar
quarter. Offenders on commissary restriction will not be eligible to
receive commissary items from a direct purchase. This will be accessible
through a link on the Texas.gov website. The merchandise purchased online
will be distributed to the offender from the commissary at their unit of
assignment.

To ensure all items are on hand and the orders are filled in a timely
manner, we will offer the top 100 selling items from the previous calendar
quarter. The products offered will be periodically updated on our website
and will also include any new items added to the product line. Seasonal
“packaged” specials may be available from outside vendors along with the
current TDCJ “holiday packs” of assorted candy and snack items.

jaeusa
02-01-2012, 01:38 AM
Rachel thats awesome. I have a new pen pal and I wouldnt mind sending something. I can do books but thats kinda lame I want to send candy. Everyone needs candy. Not that books arent important but candy is awesome. Thanks again

x4livin
02-01-2012, 09:51 PM
So it's mostly commissary stuff they already have available? Plus occasional outside stuff??

finosfamily
03-14-2012, 06:04 PM
has anyone heard anything new on the inmate package program:caffeine:

KathleenTX
04-03-2012, 10:40 AM
Haven't hear anything else. I keep looking for a link. Anyone know anything new?

Mike1963
04-03-2012, 05:05 PM
I read on another forum that there has been several set backs but looks like it may happen in june.Lets hope so huh?

Lenorat
04-04-2012, 04:52 PM
Wonder how we will find out the info. on vendors etc?? I am sure you are right acro, but this is not the way it was done before. You know they will be going through it no matter where it comes from.:thumbsup:


I hope they approve the package program too. They are doing it in most other states. In the meantime I have been using angel heart grafix. They have a lot of cute cards and all the stationary products as well. I also heard in some states that they allow families to send a package that includes a television. It would be so wonderful to be able to send a Xmas package like this to my son. God bless and hope your loved ones come home soon. :)

grmnclt_gurl
04-10-2012, 01:14 AM
I read on another forum that there has been several set backs but looks like it may happen in june.Lets hope so huh?

June would be awesome - In "time" for Father's Day :thumbsup: Fingers crossed!

grammygirl44
04-27-2012, 02:57 PM
Just want to share lastest info on care packages. Just found this posted on the tifa.org website today.

The TDCJ Commissary and Trust Fund Department will soon initiate a direct purchase program for friends and family members to allow them to make online purchases for offenders. These purchases will be from the existing product line along with some new packaged items that will be added. Offenders can receive one direct purchase of up to $50 each calendar quarter. Offenders on commissary restriction will not be eligible to receive commissary items from a direct purchase. This will be accessible through a link on the Texas.gov website. The merchandise purchased online will be distributed to the offender from the commissary at their unit of assignment. Website development has been ongoing and the projected launch date is July 2012.

Hope this helps everyone who has been wondering what's going on with the care packages. Maybe we will have more info when the website is up and available in July.

RobinsMan
04-30-2012, 02:44 PM
Robin told me at visitation yesterday that official notice and details of the inmate care package program had been posted at Hobby. She said that she would send me a copy which I'll post if she comes through with it.

jacob's_girll
04-30-2012, 04:54 PM
Robin told me at visitation yesterday that official notice and details of the inmate care package program had been posted at Hobby. She said that she would send me a copy which I'll post if she comes through with it.

OK great! Thanks!

Pearl1218
05-02-2012, 04:31 PM
I heard that this was a new thing. My man says we can send stuff off the commissary list. Has anyone heard anything about it?

Renee
05-02-2012, 10:11 PM
There's no definite information right at the moment, but it's in the works. Hopefully, we will know more soon!

Faith & God
05-04-2012, 11:12 AM
My husband told me on the phone this morning he read it starts next month.He ask me to check into and see how it will be done.I just read that there will be a website we can go to.So i assume that's how we order for them.

montysmom
05-04-2012, 12:16 PM
I'm not getting all excited until I see it actually happen and then maybe when I see what can be purchased. If it is the same thing that is on commissary list, what is the point?

texnanny
05-04-2012, 12:41 PM
I sure hope you keep us posted so I know where to find it when it goes into effect. I just think it will be good to send them unexpected things as a gift.

dphalaska
05-05-2012, 12:07 PM
I'm not getting all excited until I see it actually happen and then maybe when I see what can be purchased. If it is the same thing that is on commissary list, what is the point?

Well if you send boxes, then you will save the money that won't be withheld from trust....
for visits to the clinic. :angry::mad::angry::blah::angry:

montysmom
05-06-2012, 11:14 AM
It all comes from the same source anyway...............ME!

Lenorat
05-06-2012, 10:00 PM
It would be great if we were able to send our loved ones items they need directly. In the meantime, I have opened a webstore that caters to our loved ones needs. Hopefully it will be of help to other families who have a loved one incarcerated. Please check out my store at angelheartgrafix to see what we offer. Best of luck and I hope they allow more items to be sent to our loved ones soon.

rlwhitmore
05-10-2012, 10:46 PM
Talked to hubby tonight. The Echo said the program starts June 1. He's in the Neal Unit in Amarillo. I would guess it starts the same time for everyone?

James' Sister
05-12-2012, 03:35 AM
My brother says he wants "store bought boxers" & dried fruit. I hope they are a part of the "additional" items on the list!!!

x4livin
05-12-2012, 08:18 AM
My brother says he wants "store bought boxers" & dried fruit. I hope they are a part of the "additional" items on the list!!!

They may not allow the fruit at all. There is already a huge problem with hooch and this would make it worse.

TnT1202
05-12-2012, 01:20 PM
Contact TDCJ or the unit directly if you have any questions regarding mail regulations or vendors. County Jails and other facilities may have different rules that apply, so please check with them first.

Purchasing Books:

Amazon @ amazon.com

Barnes & Noble @ barnesandnoble.com

Books A Million @ booksamillion.com

Inside Books @ insidebooksproject.com

75% Off Books @ 75offbookstores.com

Powell's Online Bookstore @ powells.com

Borders @ bordersstores.com



Purchasing Stationary & Books:


Paperback Swap-n-Shop @ paperbackswapnshop.com

Inmate Paper @ inmatepaper.com

Rosie's Graphics @ rosiesgraphics.com

Texas Prison Bookstore @ texasprisonbookstore.com

Office Depot @ officedepot.com (contact 1-888-819-7272 for ordering &
delivery procedures to prison facilities)

Office Max @ officemax.com (contact store about ordering & delivery
procedures to prison facilities)

AngelHeart Grafix @ angelheartgrafix.com

Staples @ staples.com (contact them about ordering & delivery to
prison facilities)

BeautyGato8685
05-12-2012, 01:27 PM
Thanks for the info.

dphalaska
05-16-2012, 12:09 PM
Denton County Jail (Texas) Package Program
Denton County Jail - TX
.50 per oz. for cheez-its and .85 cents for Ramen noodles...better be able to do better than that.
hope it is better than>Access Securepak® is designed to be your ONE STOP SHOP for sending gift packages to your family or friends in the Denton County Jail.
Go here and put in any first name then pick one and clic it and the catalog will open up....I am not impressed.
I cannot add urls but if you google Denton county inmate package program you will find it.

California and other states heve decent programs, I just wonder what TX politician has their fingers in this money pile....

Joamy2007
05-18-2012, 12:51 AM
Does anyone know what this is about?? What it consists of?? Which units can get it?? Can u send anything or do they have a website where u can pick.. My brother, cousin && friend are all locked up && asking me but I dont know what their talkin about. My friend said she heard her unit will start in june but she dont know what it is. Anyone with info PLEASE contact me

grmnclt_gurl
05-18-2012, 02:15 AM
Here is a link to the thread that has the most info on it. I would skip to the 3rd or 4th page, as the early discussion on pg 1 & 2, is more about the house bill itself and trying to figure out if and when TDC would actually start the program. Best Wishes

http://www.prisontalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=561492

Joamy2007
05-18-2012, 07:36 AM
Aww thanks so much(:

Cara1947
05-20-2012, 09:38 AM
The latest issue of The Echo announced the packages would be available June 1 at Texas.gov. 4 per year less than $50 each.

Mostly it will be what's already on the commissary list (there are supposed to be a few exclusives; and the list is supposed to be updated every quarter), but the golden nugget is that the packages will NOT impact their indigent medical care. Also, the packages will not be counted against their max commissary allowance, so it's like "getting extra" for them.

For me, it will be a bit like getting to send holiday gifts and birthday and anniversary gifts. Beats what I can send now! LOL

rlwhitmore
05-20-2012, 05:59 PM
The latest issue of The Echo announced the packages would be available June 1 at Texas.gov. 4 per year less than $50 each.

Mostly it will be what's already on the commissary list (there are supposed to be a few exclusives; and the list is supposed to be updated every quarter), but the golden nugget is that the packages will NOT impact their indigent medical care. Also, the packages will not be counted against their max commissary allowance, so it's like "getting extra" for them.

For me, it will be a bit like getting to send holiday gifts and birthday and anniversary gifts. Beats what I can send now! LOL


Talked to hubby last night. Each quarter, the list family can choose from will be the top 100 sellers on the current commissary list...with a few extras (or so they're saying).

weedman31212
05-22-2012, 10:56 AM
Can someone tell me where I can find The Echo? I have no clue.

dphalaska
05-22-2012, 11:15 AM
The ECHO is an in prison publication (similar to a small newspaper) in which a small article has been written,all of the info contained in it is all written here in thesee package threads.
good luck and hope it happens when it says, June 1st,one of the postings has alink to a scanned copy of the article but I cannot post URL's....

rhondab.
06-01-2012, 06:53 AM
Today is June 1, has anyone heard anything about the inmate package program

KSmith
06-01-2012, 07:34 AM
Today is June 1, has anyone heard anything about the inmate package program

Hubby and I were talking about this during our last visit and he said they were told it wouldn't start until July. I went to www.Texas.gov (http://www.Texas.gov) and I didn't see anything there yet. :confused:

rhondab.
06-01-2012, 07:52 AM
So I called the state and they said it would be mid-August before it started. Which sucks, wanted to do something nice for the hubby since he is on lockdown :(

revolm2008
06-01-2012, 09:15 AM
I spoke to my husband and it won't start until September.

I lift my eyes up, my help comes from The Lord!

Cara1947
06-01-2012, 05:36 PM
The last issue of The Echo said June 1. But, nothing on texas.gov as of just a few minutes ago.

If we were as sloppy at meeting deadlines as TDCJ, we'd be out of work, probably in custody, and dead broke!

montysmom
06-01-2012, 09:46 PM
I spoke to my husband and it won't start until September.

I lift my eyes up, my help comes from The Lord!
Exactly was I was talking about when I said, I will believe it when I see it.

They have been telling us this since last year.

welderswife
06-02-2012, 12:36 AM
Today is June 1, has anyone heard anything about the inmate package program
Nothing started in Texas yet. Big shocker there right??:eek::confused:

rlwhitmore
06-02-2012, 09:03 PM
Been dealing with TDCJ for over 6 years now (far less time than many, but a little more than a few), and haven't seen them meet a deadline ONCE....NOT ONCE. Sorry, should not use the term "deadline". Just wish that when they have a projected date, they'd try to make that date. If they don't think they can....don't set a date!

cadillaclove
10-04-2012, 10:39 PM
hmmm... any word on this yet?? ive been looking but have found nothing :(

ldenton08
10-05-2012, 12:53 PM
hmmm... any word on this yet?? ive been looking but have found nothing :(

if you google texas.gov/ecommdirect you can find the link but it's going to tell you to check back during normal business hours no matter what time you go.

cadillaclove
10-05-2012, 01:29 PM
if you google texas.gov/ecommdirect you can find the link but it's going to tell you to check back during normal business hours no matter what time you go.

i checked it out and you were right :/

pgstr
10-05-2012, 05:30 PM
Just checked it a few minutes ago and it now says it will be available Thursday the 11th of Oct. I won't hold my breath!

PRM

keith74mom
10-05-2012, 06:51 PM
Haha- ain't that the truth! I don't think any of us are holding our breath!

cactusprincess
10-11-2012, 08:00 PM
Still not available

welderswife
10-11-2012, 08:38 PM
My man is at Lewis unit and he purchased on of the snack packages. There are to prefilled packages available. One is snacks and the other is hygiene items. You do not get to select the items yourself. Anyway the snack package he got was all chips ( all jalapeno flavored) some granola bars and afew packs of cookies. Nothing he says he will ever purchase again. It is better to choose and buy individual snacks to get flavors/kinds you eat. It is not available on line but the packages are at the unit ready for on line purchasing but also available to the inmates.

welderswife
10-11-2012, 08:47 PM
this is a list of the 2 packages available

dphalaska
10-11-2012, 09:18 PM
this is a list of the 2 packages available

i hope they are kidding.....extra tuna and fish and beef stews and sardines beeftips....cheeses....HOLIDAY TREATS....walnuts, decent peanut butter.
jelly, vitamins, fans, radios,headsets,glasses.Hell fruit cake would be better than that LAME PKG.
if thats the deal they won't get my $50.00 eFFF TDCJ :blah::blah::blah:

Dutches
10-11-2012, 09:38 PM
With all this waiting we are doing, I figured it would be something good. I'm not so interested now...

rbandb
10-11-2012, 09:40 PM
My honey works in the commissary, wanted the packages at first until he started looking at them. He said they just aren't worth the money, the items are like snack size on top of it.

dphalaska
10-11-2012, 10:05 PM
h-e-double toothpicks....:pow::taz::argh::argh::taz:

welderswife
10-12-2012, 07:09 AM
i hope they are kidding.....extra tuna and fish and beef stews and sardines beeftips....cheeses....HOLIDAY TREATS....walnuts, decent peanut butter.
jelly, vitamins, fans, radios,headsets,glasses.Hell fruit cake would be better than that LAME PKG.
if thats the deal they won't get my $50.00 eFFF TDCJ :blah::blah::blah:

It is no joke..you do not select the items you get and it is all just a bundle of the usual commissary items. Nothing special at all. We should have known TDCJ would find a way to eff it up! What could have been a good uplifting, encouraging thing has ended up being a huge disappointment and disheartening experience. I had actually hoped for some clothing items like thermals for the winter. Guess I was stupid for thinking TDCJ would actually follow other states and not be looking to line their own pockets. We were all anxiously waiting for this to start. I am now curious how they are going to eff up the cell phone use we are all looking forward to. I aalready know I will just be sticking to snail mail and jpay emails since our sentence is close to ending.
Look closely at the hygiene package.. 1 shampoo, 1conditioner, 1 lotion, 1 body wash and a deodorant..50 bucks?

BamaInmateBro
10-12-2012, 08:57 AM
My girlfriends letter I received today was saying that starting yesterday (11 Oct) that the packages should be available on Hobby Unit. It sounds like from what I have read here that it will be a big disappointment though.
Not surprising for TDCJ.

airmiles
10-12-2012, 10:55 AM
Someone should put in a public records request to find out how much has been spent on this scheme so far, and who actually won the contract.

dphalaska
10-12-2012, 11:13 AM
ok hheres what i say,tell all of our inmates,friends, people, family etc to boycott there lame theft attempt....if in fact they haven't smartnd up by launch date.
i for one am really PO'd they have no intention of doing something good.
who could be this stupid....besides TDCJ.

dphalaska
10-12-2012, 11:47 AM
now i guess the next thing they will come up with is an inflated administrative cost to inmates for cases involving illegal potato chip trading.bassssfishtiddds.
you can buy one of everything on the commisary list for packaged meats for LESS than a freakeffin snackffffnpack.
merry scroogechristmas tdcj.:mad::cloud::ham::smash::pow::argh::argh::flu sh:

grammygirl44
10-12-2012, 01:34 PM
For anyone who is still interested. I just got off the phone with the tdcj commissary office and the lady there said the care package site was suppose to open today at noon and something happened and it was all fouled up. When I asked if she had any idea when it would be she said they were shooting for next Thursday, Oct. 18th. . I'm so frustrated like every one else. I'm thinking my 18 year old grandson who is pretty darn computer savy and has designed computer games could do the job for them. So here we go again with the waiting game.

cadillaclove
10-12-2012, 01:45 PM
When I checked the site on Monday, it said it would be available on october 11, 2012... now it just says coming soon :/

Cara1947
10-14-2012, 09:21 AM
Yea, me too. I think texas.gov got tired of me opening a chat every time I went on the "out 10/12" (or whatever) and ASKING about the link. LOL

Tx_Angel
10-14-2012, 07:07 PM
There are so many of us waiting to spend money on these packages... *sigh*

airmiles
10-14-2012, 11:20 PM
The hygiene package will work out to around $4 per item. That's $4 for a 15oz bottle of poor quality shampoo. Do you really want to spend that much money?

I agree with the boycott, simply because it's a rip-off.

yellowboysgirl
10-15-2012, 11:36 AM
My husband has been working commissary in TSJ for about 6 months, he says in the last month he has been,seeing care packages come through and they are very nice also cheaper to order things in a package rather than individually,and the inmates can also order themselves a package.:D

dphalaska
10-15-2012, 12:46 PM
Austin Travis State Jail

totally different beast.....

GrandmaGina
10-15-2012, 01:51 PM
My brother says he wants "store bought boxers" & dried fruit. I hope they are a part of the "additional" items on the list!!!


Is there a list of items that we may see?? Thanks:)

Renee
10-15-2012, 03:42 PM
There may be others, but THIS (http://www.prisontalk.com/forums/showpost.php?p=6972188&postcount=115) is the only list I've seen so far. Good luck!

CenTexLyn
10-15-2012, 07:36 PM
I have to ask the question again that has been missed in the discussions about the ecomm project- would people rather it go online and be buggy/malfunctioning or would they rather see it go online without security breaches (keeping in mind that the security of your credit card information is at play here).

And I would dare say that until it HAS gone online, any frustrations with what may or may not be available is premature...

Quite frankly, I was surprised they did not go ahead and launch it prematurely...it would make it that much easier for them to abort it very soon after the program begins. After all, the quickest way to shut people up about it would be for it to fall flat immediately after launch so they simply walk away from it. There is a LOT of precedent for the agency walking away from projects with lots of programming time invested...I lost track of the number of mainframe-based operations that were abandoned in the 90's.

airmiles
10-15-2012, 11:35 PM
I have to ask the question again that has been missed in the discussions about the ecomm project- would people rather it go online and be buggy/malfunctioning or would they rather see it go online without security breaches (keeping in mind that the security of your credit card information is at play here).

And I would dare say that until it HAS gone online, any frustrations with what may or may not be available is premature...

Quite frankly, I was surprised they did not go ahead and launch it prematurely...it would make it that much easier for them to abort it very soon after the program begins. After all, the quickest way to shut people up about it would be for it to fall flat immediately after launch so they simply walk away from it. There is a LOT of precedent for the agency walking away from projects with lots of programming time invested...I lost track of the number of mainframe-based operations that were abandoned in the 90's.

I don't think it is people wanting a system that is unsecure just to have the service available, I think it is more the complete lack of official information. We are being drip-fed anecdotal phone conversation comments which seem to contradict previous rumours. There is no information at all on the TDCJ site.

I also work with database developers and I know it can take several years to build a sophisticated system. But there was no need for TDCJ to go with an inexperienced and new system in the first place, when there are other companies who work with other DoCs and already have the software in place. What do we know about this E-Comm company? All I could find out with a quick search is that it is registered in Utah. How do we know our credit card information will be safe even if the system is released? This is Texas tax-payer's money being spent here and I am amazed that no one is asking to see more details.

welderswife
10-16-2012, 06:43 AM
I don't think it is people wanting a system that is unsecure just to have the service available, I think it is more the complete lack of official information. We are being drip-fed anecdotal phone conversation comments which seem to contradict previous rumours. There is no information at all on the TDCJ site.

I also work with database developers and I know it can take several years to build a sophisticated system. But there was no need for TDCJ to go with an inexperienced and new system in the first place, when there are other companies who work with other DoCs and already have the software in place. What do we know about this E-Comm company? All I could find out with a quick search is that it is registered in Utah. How do we know our credit card information will be safe even if the system is released? This is Texas tax-payer's money being spent here and I am amazed that no one is asking to see more details.

I agree. We aren't asking for perfect or demanding anything that wasn't promoted and promised. Not only is Texas way to far behind in implementing things to make life a little easier but they can't seem to get it done in the time frame they allowed themselves. We can be patient, understanding and even make excuses for them but would the State do the same if we were talking about a probationer or parolee??
The inmates are already purchasing these so called (useless) care packages at the units. The majority won't buy a second one. The only items available I posted already. No clothing items, no name brand hygiene and no snacks that weren't already available in individual bags. Nothing premature in the fact that again it is a rip-off disquised as something for inmates and families. I cry Wolf, Foul and whatever other term you want that will label this as profitting off the blood sweat and tears of the less fortunate and incarcerated.

CenTexLyn
10-16-2012, 06:19 PM
I don't think it is people wanting a system that is unsecure just to have the service available, I think it is more the complete lack of official information. We are being drip-fed anecdotal phone conversation comments which seem to contradict previous rumours. There is no information at all on the TDCJ site.

TDCJ has a long history of not wanting to put information out in the way of a release whenever possible. They know, from past experiences, that stuff goes awry. Hell, we saw it in the 80's and early 90's with bringing new units online because of the construction delays. And in those cases, you had employees who needed to know when they could safely lease or purchase housing in their new area of assignment...let me tell you that the uncertainty for THAT is far more unsettling than not knowing precisely when you can spend a few bucks online for commissary.

I also work with database developers and I know it can take several years to build a sophisticated system. But there was no need for TDCJ to go with an inexperienced and new system in the first place, when there are other companies who work with other DoCs and already have the software in place. What do we know about this E-Comm company? All I could find out with a quick search is that it is registered in Utah. How do we know our credit card information will be safe even if the system is released? This is Texas tax-payer's money being spent here and I am amazed that no one is asking to see more details.

TDCJ is long-noted for trying to reinvent the wheel. Remember that it has only recently been the case that they dropped the requirement for new programmers to know and have experience with COBOL and FORTRAN. Yes, they were looking for people that had experience with languages THAT archaic. The mainframe is also still effectively the same thing in use for close to 30 years now...so in some respects, it would not surprise me to see the same issues with getting different system components to interface with each other not unlike the clusterf*ck that the Continental/United merger was (complete with the nightmare of March 3rd).

It took close to three years to get the disciplinary system online when they did that, and other systems were at least six or seven years in the works and still not fully functional when I left from the ID side of the agency.

grammygirl44
10-18-2012, 05:46 PM
A couple hours ago the site to order items from the commissary for inmates was up and running. It is only available right now for certain units and all units will be online soon. I had trouble accessing the site at first and called the state commissary/trust fund phone number and a very nice and helpful lady there walked me through it. I have just placed an order for my daughter who is in the Hobby Unit. I found the site easy to use. You can order health/hygiene products, beverages, food and correspondence items and deposit funds to the inmate accounts. There is a service fee to order items, mine was $3.75 for the $50 I ordered. The pack of 5 hygiene items was $22.50 for female items which included a name brand shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, deodorant and lotion. No snack packs were available but you could order individual items. The lady in the commissary office said more items will be added and items for the holidays will be available and there will be a holiday spend. The price of the items are the same the inmates pay and weren't too bad for instance a can drink is fifty cents. Soon items like cards and stationery will be available and are printed by the Hobby unit for all the unit commissary's. So far there are no clothing items or things like fans, radios, etc available on the site. Once it is going well maybe they will be added. I have called several times a week to the commissary office to find out what was going on and all the ladies I've spoken to there have been nothing but helpful and the one I talked to that helped me today was just as excited as I was that the site was open. All I know is I ordered without any trouble and am waiting to see how soon my daughter will get the items. By the way if the order can't be filled because the items aren't available or in stock, the money will be deposited as a refund to the inmates trust fund account after 30 days. All the information is on the website under terms and conditions of use. Hopefully all will go well. Good Luck !

airmiles
10-18-2012, 11:13 PM
Not available right now, still getting the old, "we're only open between 9-4" message which is ridiculous for an online system.

I wouldn't be at all surprised though if only US credit cards can be used, given TDCJ's abhorrance of those of us overseas.

cadillaclove
10-19-2012, 03:44 PM
I tried ordering too, but no luck so I called the 1800 number. the operator said that only the hobby unit is eligible right now until they add all the other units to the program :/ ...so if you try enetering your LO info and you get an error message, that's why.

terrifictina
10-19-2012, 04:11 PM
It is no joke..you do not select the items you get and it is all just a bundle of the usual commissary items. Nothing special at all. We should have known TDCJ would find a way to eff it up! What could have been a good uplifting, encouraging thing has ended up being a huge disappointment and disheartening experience. I had actually hoped for some clothing items like thermals for the winter. Guess I was stupid for thinking TDCJ would actually follow other states and not be looking to line their own pockets. We were all anxiously waiting for this to start. I am now curious how they are going to eff up the cell phone use we are all looking forward to. I aalready know I will just be sticking to snail mail and jpay emails since our sentence is close to ending.
Look closely at the hygiene package.. 1 shampoo, 1conditioner, 1 lotion, 1 body wash and a deodorant..50 bucks?

I realize many of you, and myself are a little let down on this package deal going on. But the price is reasonable....considering inflation. Take the Hygeine package; it has 5 items. These items would, out here on the outside, cost you approximately $4 - $4.50 each. In the package, each items is going for $4.40. Totalling up to $22.00. That's not so bad. :idea: Hygeine products are not cheap. (Unless you are) I've been in hard times, mostly after my husband died. When I would buy the cheap shampoo for my 8 kids, they went thru it so fast. And that goes for a lot of items, obviously not just shampoo. I'm hoping these are quality items, and brands.

Maybe this plan didn't quite go the way they planned. It's still new, and everyone has their own opion and can be optomistic, or not.

terrifictina
10-19-2012, 06:21 PM
A couple hours ago the site to order items from the commissary for inmates was up and running. It is only available right now for certain units and all units will be online soon. I had trouble accessing the site at first and called the state commissary/trust fund phone number and a very nice and helpful lady there walked me through it. I have just placed an order for my daughter who is in the Hobby Unit. I found the site easy to use. You can order health/hygiene products, beverages, food and correspondence items and deposit funds to the inmate accounts. There is a service fee to order items, mine was $3.75 for the $50 I ordered. The pack of 5 hygiene items was $22.50 for female items which included a name brand shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, deodorant and lotion. No snack packs were available but you could order individual items. The lady in the commissary office said more items will be added and items for the holidays will be available and there will be a holiday spend. The price of the items are the same the inmates pay and weren't too bad for instance a can drink is fifty cents. Soon items like cards and stationery will be available and are printed by the Hobby unit for all the unit commissary's. So far there are no clothing items or things like fans, radios, etc available on the site. Once it is going well maybe they will be added. I have called several times a week to the commissary office to find out what was going on and all the ladies I've spoken to there have been nothing but helpful and the one I talked to that helped me today was just as excited as I was that the site was open. All I know is I ordered without any trouble and am waiting to see how soon my daughter will get the items. By the way if the order can't be filled because the items aren't available or in stock, the money will be deposited as a refund to the inmates trust fund account after 30 days. All the information is on the website under terms and conditions of use. Hopefully all will go well. Good Luck !
Thanks for the great news.:boogie: CA has about 3 online vendors for quarterly packages. They also have special stores with clothes, shoes, electronics... almost anything they could need or use.:rolleyes: This is a big step for Texas, so I'm sure they just want to make sure that everything goes good with the initial package. I'm glad your shopping experience was good. :giggle: Thanks for sharing your story :)

airmiles
10-19-2012, 11:32 PM
I realize many of you, and myself are a little let down on this package deal going on. But the price is reasonable....considering inflation. Take the Hygeine package; it has 5 items. These items would, out here on the outside, cost you approximately $4 - $4.50 each. In the package, each items is going for $4.40. Totalling up to $22.00. That's not so bad. :idea: Hygeine products are not cheap. (Unless you are) I've been in hard times, mostly after my husband died. When I would buy the cheap shampoo for my 8 kids, they went thru it so fast. And that goes for a lot of items, obviously not just shampoo. I'm hoping these are quality items, and brands.

Maybe this plan didn't quite go the way they planned. It's still new, and everyone has their own opion and can be optomistic, or not.

They wont be quality brands. I am told that good shampoo can be bought for half that price in the US - and don't forget that TDCJ will be purchasing these things wholesale and so the item price will be significantly lower than you would pay in Walmart.

dphalaska
10-20-2012, 10:58 AM
well i sincerely hope that i was premature with my ranting and all goes well....things are almost always better when i am wrong...:boogie::D:boogie:

CenTexLyn
10-20-2012, 11:12 AM
They wont be quality brands. I am told that good shampoo can be bought for half that price in the US - and don't forget that TDCJ will be purchasing these things wholesale and so the item price will be significantly lower than you would pay in Walmart.

don't forget that wallyworld ALSO buys wholesale, and quite likely for less than TDCJ would have under whatever purchasing contracts the State has in place with various vendors...so wallyworld likely would make more per unit than TDCJ would on the same item.

dphalaska
10-20-2012, 11:31 AM
it would be nice if they offered a preview option for those of us who lack patience...w/o being on someones visitor list to confirm you i don't think you can get past page two...

CenTexLyn
10-20-2012, 11:50 AM
it would be nice if they offered a preview option for those of us who lack patience...w/o being on someones visitor list to confirm you i don't think you can get past page two...

Not seeing it in the stuff on the front page of the site nor, admittedly, have I followed everything all that closely on it (I tend to wait until change actually comes to fruition to focus on particulars)...are they going to require persons to be on the visiting list to use the site for either purchase or funding?

(and yes, there are some who cannot be on a visiting list for various reasons...as an example, I had someone for a period of time where it would have impacted my access to units in the pursuit of my client contacts to be on their visiting list even though we had known each other long before their incarceration)

HoldinItDown2010
10-20-2012, 11:52 AM
it would be nice if they offered a preview option for those of us who lack patience...w/o being on someones visitor list to confirm you i don't think you can get past page two...

I'm with u on that 1 I just wanna peak

dphalaska
10-20-2012, 11:58 AM
Here are only part of the selections if it this is better than I imagined https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000179_01202_125.jpeg 2oz $.55
https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000190_04107_300.jpeg 14ozhttps://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000180_01203_125.jpeg 2oz https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000170_00403_300.jpeg 8 oz

https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000169_00383_125.jpeg7.5 oz $1.45 https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000128_00059_300.jpeg8oz $1.25
https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000132_00075_300.jpeg$.75https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000134_00089_300.jpeg$1.45
https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000149_00180_300.jpeg$1.30https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000239_09631_300.jpeg$2.10
https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000192_04140_300.jpeg$1.15https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000187_02410_300.jpeg$.22

https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000142_00156_300.jpeg 32oz $3.00https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000143_00160_300.jpeg$.60https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000209_28813_125.jpeg$.60

https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/content/images/thumbs/0000182_01244_300.jpeg$.95

dphalaska
10-20-2012, 01:24 PM
Here are the food items currently listed, I was hasty...I am happier:boogie:

CHEESE POPCORN 8 OZ $1.25............................. ...4 CHEESE INSTANT POTATO 4 OZ $1.15

INSTANT RICE 8 OZ $0.75 .....................................VANILLA WAFER 16 OZ $1.45

BBQ-CHIPS 8 OZ $1.75 .........................................SALTINE CRACKERS 4 OZ $0.29

MEXICAN GROUND BEEF 7 OZ $1.90 .......................SARDINES IN HOT SAUCE 3.53 OZ $0.70

TUNA IN WATER 4.23 OZ $1.30 .............................BARBECUE SAUCE 18 OZ $1.45

RAMEN CHILI NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25

RAMEN BEEF NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25

RAMEN CHICKEN NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25 ...................SALAD DRESSING 12 OZ $1.75

NO CALORIE SWEETNER 100 CT $1.15 ....................HABANERO SAUCE 5 OZ $0.60

CREAMY PEANUT BUTTER 18 OZ $3.10 ...................JALAPENO SQUEEZE CHEESE 16 OZ $1.85

STRAWBERRY PRESERVES 12 OZ $1.60.................. GRAPE JELLY 12 OZ $1.50
.
INSTANT NONFAT MILK 3.2 OZ $1.10 .....................SANDWICH SPREAD 14 OZ $1.90

CHUNK CHICKEN IN BROTH 7 OZ $3.15 ..................PORK SPAM 3 OZ $1.15

CHILI WITH BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45 ...........................CHILI NO BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45

WHOLE JALAPENO PEPPER 1.3 OZ $0.20 .................REFRIED BEANS 8 OZ $0.95

CHILI NO BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45 ..............................REFRIED BEANS 8 OZ $0.95

M&M PEANUT 1.74 OZ $0.80

SNICKERS CANDY BAR 2.7 OZ $0.80

MILKY WAY CANDY BAR 2.05 OZ $0.80

FRUIT FLAVORED HARD CANDY 8 OZ $1.15

CINNAMON JAWBREAKER 4.5 OZ $0.80

PEPPERMINT STICK 1 OZ $0.11

CHICK-O-STICK .7 OZ $0.14

UNSALTED TRAIL MIX 2 OZ $0.55

UNSALTED ENERGIZER MIX 2 OZ $0.55

INSTANT OATMEAL VARIETY 10 PK $2.20

BUD'S COOKIE VARIETY 7.5 OZ $1.15

CHOC0LATE CHIP COOKIES 14 OZ $1.25

MARIAS COOKIES 5.6 OZ $0.55

VANILLA CREAM COOKIES 16 OZ $1.15

TORTILLA CHIPS 16 OZ $1.75

CORN CHIPS 16 OZ $1.90

PORK SKINS 1.75 OZ $0.55

SUNFLOWER KERNALS 12 OZ $2.10

PARTY SNACK MIX 11 OZ $1.45

SNACK SPORTS PACK $27.50......so this is the potato chip pac....

dphalaska
10-20-2012, 01:57 PM
My experience also seemed to indicate that you could make deposits...

DEPOSIT


Enter the amount you want to deposit and select ‘Add to Cart’. The Trust Fund deposit limit is any amount up to $9,999.99 per transaction.


The fee for $9999.99 would be $227.56
The fee for $100.00 would be ..$4.81
The fee for $150.00 would be...$5.93
DEPOSIT$150.01
$150.00 CMTexas.gov
Administrative Fee $5.931


This is/would be a few bucks cheaper than J-PAY ....:boogie::boogie::boogie::boogie:

Transaction Detail

This online service is provided by Texas.gov, the official website of Texas. The price of this service includes funds that support the ongoing operations and enhancements of Texas.gov, which is provided by a third party in partnership with the State.

dphalaska
10-20-2012, 05:43 PM
:thumbsup:...Ok here is the remainder of the list from TDCJ E-COMM...:thumbsup:


Health & Beauty
dial soap 1.25 oz...$0.19..................colgate toothpaste gel 6 oz.....$1.85

dandruff shampoo 12 oz...$1.10........amerfresh shampoo 15 oz........$1.05

brush-hair/palm...$0.60.....................pomade hair dressing 7 oz......$1.85

cocoa butter lotion 8 oz...$0.90........................baby powder 15 oz...$1.00

chike vanilla nutrition shake 43 gm...$0.95

chike chocolate nutrition shake 43gm..$0.95

toothbrush-3"anti/green...$0.45......................effergrip tube 2.5 oz...$5.85

female hygiene pack....$22.50................super form tampons 8 ct...$1.20

lubriderm moisture lotion 6 oz...$2.90

toilet tissue 500/2 ply..........$0.60


Correspondence
Thinking of You card...$0.40...........two manila envelopes 10x15...$0.52

8x11 writing tablet 50 sheets...$1.50.......#10 business envelope...$0.03

black ink pen...$0.28.................................#2 black lead pencil...$0.15



Beverages
dr.pepper 12 oz...$0.50...........................diet coca cola 12 oz...$0.50

coca cola 12 oz...$0.50......................................sp rite 12 oz...$0.50

barqs root beer 12 oz...$0.50...................diet dr.pepper 12 oz...$0.50

coke zero 12 oz...$0.50...........................spring water 16.9 oz...$0.30

vanilla cappuccino .81 oz........$0.20

100% columbian coffee 4 oz...$3.05

instant hot chocolate 32 oz...$3.00...........orange juice 11.5 oz...$0.60

pineapple/orange juice 11.5 oz...$0.60

strawberry/kiwi juice 11.5 oz......$0.60

cranberry juice 11.5 oz ...$0.60.........................grape cool down 1.4 oz ...$0.75

orange electrolite drink.14 oz $0.22...........lemon lime electrolite 1.4 oz ...$0.22

HoldinItDown2010
10-20-2012, 05:45 PM
Is that it? No clothes? I'll just send money

ccnrly
10-20-2012, 06:39 PM
Everytime I put my son's tdc # and last name in I get an error saying no offender found Is anyone else having this problem?

CenTexLyn
10-20-2012, 07:06 PM
Everytime I put my son's tdc # and last name in I get an error saying no offender found Is anyone else having this problem?

The word the other day is that it was only up on a trial basis for those housed at HB. Presuming everything goes as it should, then it was slated to go live next week systemwide.

dphalaska
10-20-2012, 10:45 PM
Is that it? No clothes? I'll just send money

Thats well and good BUT your LO/inmate has a spending limit and can only have a certain amount of commisary, BUT (as I see it) 4 times per year and at holiday...Christmas maybe... they can have $50. EXTRA... which if you send $$$ they will not have...like during lock downs.

or when he/she gets a extra bunch of stuff and has thoughts like ,hey someone out there is thinking about me...:boogie::plot::boogie::poke: :hmm:

dmigic
10-20-2012, 11:37 PM
For anyone who is still interested. I just got off the phone with the tdcj commissary office and the lady there said the care package site was suppose to open today at noon and something happened and it was all fouled up. When I asked if she had any idea when it would be she said they were shooting for next Thursday, Oct. 18th. . I'm so frustrated like every one else. I'm thinking my 18 year old grandson who is pretty darn computer savy and has designed computer games could do the job for them. So here we go again with the waiting game.

I talked to someone yesterday afternoon from the Texas.gov, and they told me that Hobby was the testing unit for the October 18th date. Others will follow at a later date.

airmiles
10-21-2012, 12:28 AM
Thats well and good BUT your LO/inmate has a spending limit and can only have a certain amount of commisary, BUT (as I see it) 4 times per year and at holiday...Christmas maybe... they can have $50. EXTRA... which if you send $$$ they will not have...like during lock downs.

or when he/she gets a extra bunch of stuff and has thoughts like ,hey someone out there is thinking about me...:boogie::plot::boogie::poke: :hmm:

That's all well and good, but my husband knows I'm thinking of him without me sending him extra shampoo.

I am wondering what happens if the orders come in and the store runs out of a certain item. Is it substituted or does the purchaser get a refund? Because they will run out of things, they already do.

airmiles
10-21-2012, 12:31 AM
Everytime I put my son's tdc # and last name in I get an error saying no offender found Is anyone else having this problem?

I don't understand how you are able to put your son's TDCJ# in. I checked yesterday and was still getting the "we are closed between 9pm and 4am" screen, and it would have been about 1pm Texas time at that point.

rlwhitmore
10-21-2012, 08:33 PM
I don't understand how you are able to put your son's TDCJ# in. I checked yesterday and was still getting the "we are closed between 9pm and 4am" screen, and it would have been about 1pm Texas time at that point.


I'm getting the same thing no matter what time of day I go to the website.:hmm:

airmiles
10-21-2012, 11:37 PM
I've just realised that they have changed the URL. It is now https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/

870roundtrip
10-22-2012, 08:47 PM
I haven't been able to access the site either no matter what time I go. My husband is in Coffield and he ordered the sports pack (I think its called) himself thru commissary. It didn't come off the spend amount. He said it was ok but nothing great. They don't have the hygiene packs available though :(

870roundtrip
10-23-2012, 07:19 AM
For the first time ever the site is up when I checked but of course it doesn't recognize his number since he is not at the testing unit or trial unit or whatever :(

keith74mom
10-23-2012, 06:39 PM
It didn't work for me, either. I wonder why???

For the first time ever the site is up when I checked but of course it doesn't recognize his number since he is not at the testing unit or trial unit or whatever :(

HoldinItDown2010
10-23-2012, 07:14 PM
It only works for hobby unit other units are supposed to launch Thursday

airmiles
10-24-2012, 11:28 AM
It only works for hobby unit other units are supposed to launch Thursday

Where does it say that?

HoldinItDown2010
10-24-2012, 12:06 PM
Where does it say that?

Seriously....call tech support they will tell u

Mike1963
10-25-2012, 11:02 AM
I called today.The person that answered told me that there is no set date for the launch as of yet.They are doing a trail run with the hobby unit right now.

HoldinItDown2010
10-25-2012, 11:57 AM
I called today.The person that answered told me that there is no set date for the launch as of yet.They are doing a trail run with the hobby unit right now.

That's not surprising

airmiles
10-25-2012, 11:46 PM
Tech support is not an official announcement though. To me, it counts as a rumour. I prefer official details, not hearsay, otherwise you start to look unreliable if what you say never happens.

HoldinItDown2010
10-26-2012, 01:42 AM
Tech support is not an official announcement though. To me, it counts as a rumour. I prefer official details, not hearsay, otherwise you start to look unreliable if what you say never happens.

Yea well we're dealing with tdcj nothing they say is official

grammygirl44
10-26-2012, 05:27 AM
I got a letter from my daughter on Oct. 24th, she is in the Hobby Unit, the first unit to be able to order from the inmate commissary web site. She also called me that day. She got the items I ordered her on the ecommdirect website last Thursday the next day after I ordered them. To both of our surprise the person in charge of the commissary there told her she was the very first person to get an order through the program in all the state of Texas. Seems I was the very first person to use the site. She got everything I ordered except two items and they let her chose items of the same price to sub for them. The shampoo and conditioner the hygiene package were name brand, VO-5, strawberry & cream and she was pleased about that. she also said only six orders had come through there so far. I know everyone is getting extremely frustrated with the whole thing. But if when they bring other units online it goes well it will be well worth it. I was very surprised that when I ordered it was so easy and that she got all I ordered and the next day. She and I were both very surprised that I was the first to use the site. My daughter also told me that we can now register cell phones for our phone calls. I went to the site and it seems to be true. There are directions there on how to do it and a phone number to call. Here's the site: http://www.texasoffenderfriendsandfamily.com/cellphone.asp

I truly hope they bring all the other units online so everyone can order for their loved ones very soon. Please hang in there and don't give up hope. It has all been worth it to me (the wait and the frustration) when I heard how delighted my daughter was with the extra things I ordered for her and she didn't have to take if from the money I send her each month. I was able to order her some items she doesn't usually spend her money on and it was a treat for her. I shall pray you all can order for your loved ones soon.

TDCJ Commissary
10-26-2012, 02:53 PM
eCommDirect is set to launch state-wide on October 30, 2012.

The testing at Hobby has been successful with only a few small glitches that we have been able to resolve quickly. TDCJ partnered with Texas.gov to be the website host for this program and we have had little control over the delays and setbacks with this project. We were given an August 18th date after our June date passed, so we were quite hesitant to even publish a launch date after that. However, we decided to go ahead with a test at Hobby this week and this has been very successful. TDCJ will post an update on our website under the 'News and Annuncements' section next week with a link to the site at Texas.gov.

I appreciate everyone's patience with the painful delays that we have encountered. We have set up an email account for any questions or correspondence on the direct purchase program at: ecommdirect@tdcj.state.tx.us

I am very confident that everything will go well on Tuesday. Feel free to send me an email with any questions you may have.

Eric Johnston, Director
TDCJ Commissary & Trust Fund

texnanny
10-26-2012, 06:14 PM
Eric, Thank you for the update. I have been patient, I am just so glad I will be able to send some kind of gift occassionally other than books. Thank you again, I know it was a big job.

Synti
10-26-2012, 11:03 PM
Oh this is so great thing! Can't wait that all the units are added! :boogie:

Did I get it right that it's $50 every quarter year AND $50 on some holidays? Or only $50 / every 4 months?

airmiles
10-28-2012, 06:01 AM
eCommDirect is set to launch state-wide on October 30, 2012.

The testing at Hobby has been successful with only a few small glitches that we have been able to resolve quickly. TDCJ partnered with Texas.gov to be the website host for this program and we have had little control over the delays and setbacks with this project. We were given an August 18th date after our June date passed, so we were quite hesitant to even publish a launch date after that. However, we decided to go ahead with a test at Hobby this week and this has been very successful. TDCJ will post an update on our website under the 'News and Annuncements' section next week with a link to the site at Texas.gov.

I appreciate everyone's patience with the painful delays that we have encountered. We have set up an email account for any questions or correspondence on the direct purchase program at: ecommdirect@tdcj.state.tx.us

I am very confident that everything will go well on Tuesday. Feel free to send me an email with any questions you may have.

Eric Johnston, Director
TDCJ Commissary & Trust Fund

It would take 2 seconds to type a sentence on the landing page to say that currently only inmates at Hobby Unit are able to receive orders. Why has that not been done?

OnTheWater
10-28-2012, 07:26 PM
@airmiles Right!

BamaInmateBro
10-29-2012, 06:57 AM
My Girlfriend is in Hobby and I am going through the process right now. I will let you all know how things go...


Edit, I got started, and then the site locked up and won't load. I was about to say their IT people must be a bunch of third graders, but I think even 3rd graders could do a better job. Hahaha.

terrifictina
10-29-2012, 03:34 PM
:boogie: I'm so glad that tomorrow's THE DAY for other Units to be added.....but I won't hold my breath. :rolleyes: It is an exciting thing. :yay: Eventually they will add other items, or Vendors that carry shoes, clothes, supplies, and fun things the inmates will surely enjoy. :grouphug: At least I hope they will. :wow:TDCJ is a little behind the times as far as Vendor/Packages go. :shrug: And as we all know, we need to continue to have patience.:dizzy: I like to stay on the positive side of thinking. ;)



:bat::cat::ghost::bat::cat::ghost::bat::cat::ghost ::bat::cat::ghost:
HAPPY HALLOWEEN! HAPPY HALOWEEN! HAPPY HALOWEEN!

JohnnyNJen
10-30-2012, 08:24 AM
Well I tried his ID # and his SID # and it's still a no go today. It is so frustrating that they can't get their act together. It's almost like they enjoy torturing the family! Geesh!!!

Synti
10-30-2012, 09:28 AM
We just need to hope the best and wish that it will start working before Christmas! And then we should hope that the website won't crash down if many people are using it at the same time... :D

Thumbs up, maybe some day :plot: :thumbsup:

TDCJ Commissary
10-30-2012, 12:59 PM
Looks like Texas.gov has bumped us one day on the launch of the program. They encountered some issues this weekend that took all day Monday to resolve. With only the Hobby unit activated, the wheels fell off the wagon when it encountered a load on the system - not good.

Our plan for tonight is to load all of the units in Region 1 (Byrd, Duncan, Eastham, Ellis, Estelle, Ferguson, Goodman, Goree, Holliday, Huntsville, Lewis, Polunsky and Wynne). I am waiting final approval to post an anouncement about this on the TDCJ website, but wanted to put this information out there now on this forum. I contacted Texas.gov yesterday about adding this information on their landing page and they said they would have that in place in the next couple of days (ummm, sure....) So, we will post it on our website that we can actually control what is going on.

I will periodically check back in on this thread and post updates, as we are now doing a staggered launch by region. Please understand that TDCJ is the customer on this project with Texas.gov (a website provider for several state agencies) and most of the problems/issues have been out of our control.

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

babediz30
10-30-2012, 01:18 PM
Thanks for the update!! I do software testing for a major local company and have been in IT and testing for close to 15 years. I test web sites and databases specifically. Watching the launch of this site has both been aggregating as a friend of someone who would benefit from this program and downright made me sad because of my career path. Texas may have overpaid for this site. I know sites go live with performance problems but you hope that developers and companies apply their previous learnings to the next project. If one site cradled the servers then 1 region is going to tax it after repair and the entire state is going to cause even more "stress fractures" in the environment. Good luck and I hope further rollout goes better.

JohnnyNJen
10-30-2012, 01:25 PM
Well at least we know not to hope for anything today. I'm glad they updated us and hope they keep that up - it helps a little...! :(

TDCJ Commissary
10-30-2012, 03:27 PM
The folks in our IT shop got an announcement on our website today. I tried to post a link but was not able (since I have not posted more than 25 times on the site). Look under the 'News and Announcements' on the TDCJ website.

Thanks for your patience!

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

terrifictina
10-30-2012, 05:08 PM
I found this announcement on the TDCJ web-site.

Thank you Eric Johnston for your Posts!!! Greatly appreciated...:)


Announcements

eCommDirect - Offender Commissary Purchases

The TDCJ Commissary and Trust Fund Department has initiated an on-line program (http://www.texas.gov/eCommDirect) where friends and family may purchase up to $50 of commissary items every calendar quarter for eligible offenders. The items available for purchase include the top 100 selling items which include snacks, hygiene products, correspondence supplies as well as some new packaged items. The amount purchased will not affect the amount that offenders may spend on commissary items from funds (http://www.tdcj.state.tx.us/announcements/announce_2012_ecommdirect.html#) deposited in their inmate trust fund account. In addition to offenders on commissary restriction, offenders in General Population and State Jail levels 4 and 5, Protective Custody levels 5 and 6 and Administrative Segregation levels 2 and 3, are not eligible to receive commissary purchases through this program.
Website Link: www.texas.gov/eCommDirect (http://www.texas.gov/eCommDirect)
Implementation of the on-line purchase program will be phased in over the next 30 days, with the Region I offenders at the following units able to participate (http://www.tdcj.state.tx.us/announcements/announce_2012_ecommdirect.html#) in this program effective October 31, 2012: Byrd, Duncan, Eastham, Ellis, Estelle, Ferguson, Goodman, Goree, Holliday, Huntsville, Lewis, Polunksy, and Wynne.
Throughout November, we will update the status of the participating facilities as the program is expanded to all units.

terrifictina
10-30-2012, 05:13 PM
So why does General Population not get to participate in this program? What inmates ARE eligible to participate then?

HoldinItDown2010
10-30-2012, 05:43 PM
So why does General Population not get to participate in this program? What inmates ARE eligible to participate then?

Gen pop is eligible just not on closed security which is g4 n g5

terrifictina
10-30-2012, 06:02 PM
Thanks. It was the way I read it. It was long in between commas. LOL Thanks again. Hope you have a great evening/day! :)

HoldinItDown2010
10-30-2012, 08:12 PM
Thanks. It was the way I read it. It was long in between commas. LOL Thanks again. Hope you have a great evening/day! :)

Its ok I know tdc is confusing n a pain to deal with

TDCJ Commissary
10-31-2012, 06:38 AM
It looks like everything is up and running. We have pulled a few eligible inmate numbers from the list that was loaded last night and it works.

If anyone encounters any issues on the site, please send me an email so I can get out folks on it and resolve any problems as quickly as possible.

Thanks,
Eric Johnston
TDCJ

Faith & God
10-31-2012, 07:22 AM
FYI!!! ecommdirect is up and running for the Polunsky Unit.

Mrswilliams1987
10-31-2012, 07:59 AM
It looks like everything is up and running. We have pulled a few eligible inmate numbers from the list that was loaded last night and it works.

If anyone encounters any issues on the site, please send me an email so I can get out folks on it and resolve any problems as quickly as possible.

Thanks,
Eric Johnston
TDCJ

The website is only allowing me to add money to his commisary account but I can not purchase items for him" any idea why that is?

TDCJ Commissary
10-31-2012, 08:15 AM
Email me his TDCJ# and I will find out.

(email removed per PTO policy - please ue the PM function here on PTO)

HoldinItDown2010
10-31-2012, 09:44 AM
What units is it up for

lovemycwg
10-31-2012, 10:21 AM
I have been trying to log on but it still shows offender not found. Is the Price Daniel unit on the list ?

Thank you

biraeta
10-31-2012, 10:54 AM
I have been trying to log on but it still shows offender not found. Is the Price Daniel unit on the list ?

Thank you


By what I am reading, I think we have to wait its these units right now (Not my boyfriends :-(...)

Implementation of the on-line purchase program will be phased in over the next 30 days, with the Region I offenders at the following units able to participate (http://www.tdcj.state.tx.us/announcements/announce_2012_ecommdirect.html#) in this program effective October 31, 2012: Byrd, Duncan, Eastham, Ellis, Estelle, Ferguson, Goodman, Goree, Holliday, Huntsville, Lewis, Polunksy, and Wynne.
Throughout November, we will update the status of the participating facilities as the program is expanded to all units

TDCJ Commissary
10-31-2012, 10:55 AM
I have been trying to log on but it still shows offender not found. Is the Price Daniel unit on the list ?

Thank you


Daniel is not active yet. For the latest status and list of units, please go to the TDCJ website and look under 'News and Announcements".

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

yellowboysgirl
10-31-2012, 11:02 AM
eCommDirect - Offender Commissary Purchases

The TDCJ Commissary and Trust Fund Department has initiated an on-line program (http://www.texas.gov/eCommDirect) where friends and family may purchase up to $50 of commissary items every calendar quarter for eligible offenders. The items available for purchase include the top 100 selling items which include snacks, hygiene products, correspondence supplies as well as some new packaged items. The amount purchased will not affect the amount that offenders may spend on commissary items from funds deposited in their inmate trust fund account. In addition to offenders on commissary restriction, offenders in General Population and State Jail levels 4 and 5, Protective Custody levels 5 and 6 and Administrative Segregation levels 2 and 3, are not eligible to receive commissary purchases through this program.
Website Link: www.texas.gov/eCommDirect (http://www.texas.gov/eCommDirect)
Implementation of the on-line purchase program will be phased in over the next 30 days, with the Region I offenders at the following units able to participate in this program effective October 31, 2012: Byrd, Duncan, Eastham, Ellis, Estelle, Ferguson, Goodman, Goree, Holliday, Huntsville, Lewis, Polunksy, and Wynne.
Throughout November, we will update the status of the participating facilities as the program is expanded to all units.

terrifictina
10-31-2012, 12:03 PM
Thanks for posting this again. :D I posted it yesterday, so people would know what units were open to participate.

:) Personally, I read all the posts from the day before, so I can be updated on the info, and not ask questions that have already been answered. :idea: I know this is an exciting time for us, some of us obviously are going to have to wait, :( but eventually we will all be able to purchase items for our LOs. :boogie:
To all those who are participating....let us know how it went!!! :thumbsup: Knowledge is Power!!! :yes:

Hope everyone has a great day too!!!!:wow:

lovemycwg
10-31-2012, 03:55 PM
Thank you hopefully they will have his unit on line soon.

lovemycwg
10-31-2012, 03:57 PM
thank you I will keep looking and waiting on the unit to go on-line

Daniel is not active yet. For the latest status and list of units, please go to the TDCJ website and look under 'News and Announcements".

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

pgstr
11-02-2012, 04:59 AM
I ordered a hygiene pack and funded his account yesterday (he's at Goree in the trusty camp). It worked well and I was pleased to see the fee only went up about a dollar to send the pack at the same time as making the deposit. The fee for the deposit was a little more than Western Union's convenience pay (because I'd have to do two transactions with them for the amount being sent) but less than JPay.

He goes to store today so I will report back after I hear from him whether he's pleased with the products.

PRM

texnanny
11-02-2012, 12:35 PM
Can't wait to hear how the package was. Mine can not get yet...g4 till December...at least we hope for change in December.

pgstr
11-02-2012, 02:00 PM
Can't wait to hear how the package was. Mine can not get yet...g4 till December...at least we hope for change in December.

He had wanted the hygiene pack mainly for the Degree deodorant instead of what is offered individually apparently. But he's a hygiene freak (self described) so he will use the rest as well.

texnanny
11-02-2012, 05:48 PM
So is our grandson....neat freak and very particular. Alot of the cheap stuff breaks him out. Can't wait to send package....

pgstr
11-05-2012, 06:58 AM
He had wanted the hygiene pack mainly for the Degree deodorant instead of what is offered individually apparently. But he's a hygiene freak (self described) so he will use the rest as well.

Talked to him last night and he loves the hygiene pack. The only thing is the bottles are pretty big and he doesn't have a lot of room to store them. Even with being able to keep hygiene items on his desk he said he doesn't have a lot of room to write if he keeps them all sitting out. But the quality and value seems to be okay.

biraeta
11-05-2012, 11:04 AM
Could someone post what we are able to buy or Pm me I would greatly appreciate so I can get an idea of what to purchase? My boyfriends unit isnt added yet so I can not see the list.

JohnnyNJen
11-05-2012, 11:08 AM
I pulled this off of a post on jPay and I haven't been able to order myself yet so I can't vouch for the accuracy, but this is what I went by to see what my hubby wants when we finally get our chance to order. Hope this helps. :)
Health & Beauty
dial soap 1.25 oz...$0.19..................colgate toothpaste gel 6 oz.....$1.85
dandruff shampoo 12 oz...$1.10........amerfresh shampoo 15 oz........$1.05
brush-hair/palm...$0.60.....................pomade hair dressing 7 oz......$1.85
cocoa butter lotion 8 oz...$0.90........................baby powder 15 oz...$1.00
chike vanilla nutrition shake 43 gm...$0.95 chike chocolate nutrition shake 43gm..$0.95
toothbrush-3"anti/green...$0.45......................lubriderm moisture lotion 6 oz...$2.90
toilet tissue 500/2 ply..........$0.60
Thinking of You card...$0.40...........two manila envelopes 10x15...$0.52
8x11 writing tablet 50 sheets...$1.50.......#10 business envelope...$0.03
black ink pen...$0.28.................................#2 black lead pencil...$0.15

Beverages
dr.pepper 12 oz...$0.50...........................diet coca cola 12 oz...$0.50
coca cola 12 oz...$0.50......................................sp rite 12 oz...$0.50
barqs root beer 12 oz...$0.50...................diet dr.pepper 12 oz...$0.50
coke zero 12 oz...$0.50...........................spring water 16.9 oz...$0.30
vanilla cappuccino .81 oz........$0.20 100% columbian coffee 4 oz...$3.05
instant hot chocolate 32 oz...$3.00...........orange juice 11.5 oz...$0.60
pineapple/orange juice 11.5 oz...$0.60 strawberry/kiwi juice 11.5 oz......$0.60
cranberry juice 11.5 oz ...$0.60.........................grape cool down 1.4 oz ...$0.75
orange electrolite drink.14 oz $0.22...........lemon lime electrolite 1.4 oz ...$0.22

CHEESE POPCORN 8 OZ $1.25............................. ...4 CHEESE INSTANT POTATO 4 OZ $1.15
INSTANT RICE 8 OZ $0.75 .....................................VANILLA WAFER 16 OZ $1.45
BBQ-CHIPS 8 OZ $1.75 .........................................SALTINE CRACKERS 4 OZ $0.29
MEXICAN GROUND BEEF 7 OZ $1.90 .......................SARDINES IN HOT SAUCE 3.53 OZ $0.70
TUNA IN WATER 4.23 OZ $1.30 .............................BARBECUE SAUCE 18 OZ $1.45
RAMEN CHILI NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25 RAMEN BEEF NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25
RAMEN CHICKEN NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25 ...................SALAD DRESSING 12 OZ $1.75
NO CALORIE SWEETNER 100 CT $1.15 ....................HABANERO SAUCE 5 OZ $0.60
CREAMY PEANUT BUTTER 18 OZ $3.10 ...................JALAPENO SQUEEZE CHEESE 16 OZ $1.85
STRAWBERRY PRESERVES 12 OZ $1.60.................. GRAPE JELLY 12 OZ $1.50 .
INSTANT NONFAT MILK 3.2 OZ $1.10 .....................SANDWICH SPREAD 14 OZ $1.90
CHUNK CHICKEN IN BROTH 7 OZ $3.15 ..................PORK SPAM 3 OZ $1.15
CHILI WITH BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45 ...........................CHILI NO BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45
WHOLE JALAPENO PEPPER 1.3 OZ $0.20 .................REFRIED BEANS 8 OZ $0.95
CHILI NO BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45 ..............................REFRIED BEANS 8 OZ $0.95
M&M PEANUT 1.74 OZ $0.80 SNICKERS CANDY BAR 2.7 OZ $0.80
MILKY WAY CANDY BAR 2.05 OZ $0.80FRUIT FLAVORED HARD CANDY 8 OZ $1.15
CINNAMON JAWBREAKER 4.5 OZ $0.80 PEPPERMINT STICK 1 OZ $0.11
CHICK-O-STICK .7 OZ $0.14 UNSALTED TRAIL MIX 2 OZ $0.55
UNSALTED ENERGIZER MIX 2 OZ $0.55 INSTANT OATMEAL VARIETY 10 PK $2.20
BUD'S COOKIE VARIETY 7.5 OZ $1.15 CHOC0LATE CHIP COOKIES 14 OZ $1.25
MARIAS COOKIES 5.6 OZ $0.55 VANILLA CREAM COOKIES 16 OZ $1.15
TORTILLA CHIPS 16 OZ $1.75 CORN CHIPS 16 OZ $1.90
PORK SKINS 1.75 OZ $0.55 SUNFLOWER KERNALS 12 OZ $2.10
PARTY SNACK MIX 11 OZ $1.45

biraeta
11-05-2012, 12:09 PM
I pulled this off of a post on jPay and I haven't been able to order myself yet so I can't vouch for the accuracy, but this is what I went by to see what my hubby wants when we finally get our chance to order. Hope this helps. :)
Health & Beauty
dial soap 1.25 oz...$0.19..................colgate toothpaste gel 6 oz.....$1.85
dandruff shampoo 12 oz...$1.10........amerfresh shampoo 15 oz........$1.05
brush-hair/palm...$0.60.....................pomade hair dressing 7 oz......$1.85
cocoa butter lotion 8 oz...$0.90........................baby powder 15 oz...$1.00
chike vanilla nutrition shake 43 gm...$0.95 chike chocolate nutrition shake 43gm..$0.95
toothbrush-3"anti/green...$0.45......................lubriderm moisture lotion 6 oz...$2.90
toilet tissue 500/2 ply..........$0.60
Thinking of You card...$0.40...........two manila envelopes 10x15...$0.52
8x11 writing tablet 50 sheets...$1.50.......#10 business envelope...$0.03
black ink pen...$0.28.................................#2 black lead pencil...$0.15

Beverages
dr.pepper 12 oz...$0.50...........................diet coca cola 12 oz...$0.50
coca cola 12 oz...$0.50......................................sp rite 12 oz...$0.50
barqs root beer 12 oz...$0.50...................diet dr.pepper 12 oz...$0.50
coke zero 12 oz...$0.50...........................spring water 16.9 oz...$0.30
vanilla cappuccino .81 oz........$0.20 100% columbian coffee 4 oz...$3.05
instant hot chocolate 32 oz...$3.00...........orange juice 11.5 oz...$0.60
pineapple/orange juice 11.5 oz...$0.60 strawberry/kiwi juice 11.5 oz......$0.60
cranberry juice 11.5 oz ...$0.60.........................grape cool down 1.4 oz ...$0.75
orange electrolite drink.14 oz $0.22...........lemon lime electrolite 1.4 oz ...$0.22

CHEESE POPCORN 8 OZ $1.25............................. ...4 CHEESE INSTANT POTATO 4 OZ $1.15
INSTANT RICE 8 OZ $0.75 .....................................VANILLA WAFER 16 OZ $1.45
BBQ-CHIPS 8 OZ $1.75 .........................................SALTINE CRACKERS 4 OZ $0.29
MEXICAN GROUND BEEF 7 OZ $1.90 .......................SARDINES IN HOT SAUCE 3.53 OZ $0.70
TUNA IN WATER 4.23 OZ $1.30 .............................BARBECUE SAUCE 18 OZ $1.45
RAMEN CHILI NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25 RAMEN BEEF NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25
RAMEN CHICKEN NOODLES 3 OZ $0.25 ...................SALAD DRESSING 12 OZ $1.75
NO CALORIE SWEETNER 100 CT $1.15 ....................HABANERO SAUCE 5 OZ $0.60
CREAMY PEANUT BUTTER 18 OZ $3.10 ...................JALAPENO SQUEEZE CHEESE 16 OZ $1.85
STRAWBERRY PRESERVES 12 OZ $1.60.................. GRAPE JELLY 12 OZ $1.50 .
INSTANT NONFAT MILK 3.2 OZ $1.10 .....................SANDWICH SPREAD 14 OZ $1.90
CHUNK CHICKEN IN BROTH 7 OZ $3.15 ..................PORK SPAM 3 OZ $1.15
CHILI WITH BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45 ...........................CHILI NO BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45
WHOLE JALAPENO PEPPER 1.3 OZ $0.20 .................REFRIED BEANS 8 OZ $0.95
CHILI NO BEANS 7.5 OZ $1.45 ..............................REFRIED BEANS 8 OZ $0.95
M&M PEANUT 1.74 OZ $0.80 SNICKERS CANDY BAR 2.7 OZ $0.80
MILKY WAY CANDY BAR 2.05 OZ $0.80FRUIT FLAVORED HARD CANDY 8 OZ $1.15
CINNAMON JAWBREAKER 4.5 OZ $0.80 PEPPERMINT STICK 1 OZ $0.11
CHICK-O-STICK .7 OZ $0.14 UNSALTED TRAIL MIX 2 OZ $0.55
UNSALTED ENERGIZER MIX 2 OZ $0.55 INSTANT OATMEAL VARIETY 10 PK $2.20
BUD'S COOKIE VARIETY 7.5 OZ $1.15 CHOC0LATE CHIP COOKIES 14 OZ $1.25
MARIAS COOKIES 5.6 OZ $0.55 VANILLA CREAM COOKIES 16 OZ $1.15
TORTILLA CHIPS 16 OZ $1.75 CORN CHIPS 16 OZ $1.90
PORK SKINS 1.75 OZ $0.55 SUNFLOWER KERNALS 12 OZ $2.10
PARTY SNACK MIX 11 OZ $1.45


thanks so much it helps alot!!!!

870roundtrip
11-06-2012, 07:46 AM
I was under the impression there would be "packages" to send but when I look at the list available to send my husband it is all just individual items and the same off brands he can purchase. He was able to purchase a sports pack himself a couple weeks ago when it was available but I'm not seeing them available for him. He is in Coffield. Is this going to updated or changed? Does anyone know?

HoldinItDown2010
11-06-2012, 09:03 AM
Does anyone know whether the package is delivered or if they pick it up on commissary day

pgstr
11-07-2012, 05:08 AM
Does anyone know whether the package is delivered or if they pick it up on commissary day

They pick it up the next time they make store.

TDCJ hand
11-07-2012, 07:40 AM
Rumor has it they will receive a lay in to pick packages up.

TDCJ Commissary
11-07-2012, 08:12 AM
Presently, we have instructed the commissary staff to ensure the offenders receive their purchases within 72 hours. Our system provides a list by housing area (dorm, pod, wing, etc) so that we can call them out to come get their purchases. It has worked really well so far.

I was contacted by PrisonTalk administrators wanting to confirm who I am, which makes sense. They have had posts in forums from person posing as employees or administrators providing information that was not exactly accurate. I set up this account to keep an ear to the ground on any commissary issues or problems. I will post an update for the eComm program shortly.

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

biraeta
11-07-2012, 08:32 AM
Hi, Eric thank you for all your post. They help alot!. I was wondering are other units going to be added daliy? weekly? monthly? or how is that going to work. Do you think that all units will be added by Christmas? It would suck only certain areas get to give :(

TDCJ Commissary
11-07-2012, 09:28 AM
We tried to load the entire state last night but there were some technical missteps that prevented it. We have a good workaround now for the problems we encountered last night, so I am confident it will work tonight. If it loads tonight, I will have the announcement changed on the TDCJ website hopefully before noon tomorrow.

I didn't want to broadcast the state-wide upload last night for this exact reason. This has been a very frustrating process for us also, and I didn't want another disappointment along with the perception that we can't ever get things done when we say we will do them.... I've had my share of that since our original August launch date.

emlm622
11-07-2012, 11:18 AM
I ordered my husband some things over the weekend, and as of yesterday he was told that I couldn't have ordered him anything yet, because his unit (moore) isn't online yet, and the money might be put on his books instead of him getting his stuff. Anyone else having this problem? Mr. Johnston, can you tell me what happened?

TDCJ Commissary
11-07-2012, 01:18 PM
I ordered my husband some things over the weekend, and as of yesterday he was told that I couldn't have ordered him anything yet, because his unit (moore) isn't online yet, and the money might be put on his books instead of him getting his stuff. Anyone else having this problem? Mr. Johnston, can you tell me what happened?



Email me his name and number to my address below and I will research it.

(email removed per PTO policy - please ue the PM function here on PTO)

Sunflow
11-07-2012, 01:53 PM
Mr. Johnston, I thank you very much for taking time to answer all our questions.

How long does it take for inmate to get his money when I deposit money on his account? Do I use his SID Number or TDCJ number to register?

I wonder would it be possible in the future get some kind of Christmas package on your list about products they can not buy from commissary? Once a year thing that wouldn't be included to this 50$ once in three months. It would be awesome to be able to send actual Christmas present to loved ones.

southernunaway
11-07-2012, 02:14 PM
Whats the link to get to the gift packs

Renee
11-07-2012, 02:21 PM
This is the link to the eCommDirect service: https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/ (https://tdcj-ecommdirect.portal.texas.gov/)

pgstr
11-07-2012, 03:19 PM
We tried to load the entire state last night but there were some technical missteps that prevented it. We have a good workaround now for the problems we encountered last night, so I am confident it will work tonight. If it loads tonight, I will have the announcement changed on the TDCJ website hopefully before noon tomorrow.

I didn't want to broadcast the state-wide upload last night for this exact reason. This has been a very frustrating process for us also, and I didn't want another disappointment along with the perception that we can't ever get things done when we say we will do them.... I've had my share of that since our original August launch date.

I for one applaud you for being here and helping sort out the confusion!!

PRM

emlm622
11-07-2012, 06:24 PM
Mr. Johnston, I sent you a PM on here with my information. Thanks for checking into it for me. If my husband can't get the products, can the money I spent be applied to his books? Thanks again, so much. I know this project has been a headache for everyone involved, on both sides.

HoldinItDown2010
11-07-2012, 06:27 PM
Rumor has it they will receive a lay in to pick packages up.

That's what Vic told me they told him today when he went to commissary

TDCJ Commissary
11-08-2012, 07:15 AM
ALL eligible offenders at ALL units have been loaded successfully this morning and the website is up and running!

I will post any updates here if we encounter any problems today.

Thanks you all for your patience.

Eric Johnston

SaderGirl
11-08-2012, 09:53 AM
Cool. I didn't see this before I started my Bartlett thread. Thanks!

cadillaclove
11-08-2012, 10:31 AM
ALL eligible offenders at ALL units have been loaded successfully this morning and the website is up and running!

I will post any updates here if we encounter any problems today.

Thanks you all for your patience.

Eric Johnston

hello, good morning... i was wondering if you could help me with something please. When I first went online this morning, it let me see everything and put items into the cart, but I had to do some things and didn't get to finish looking. well I just went online and now its saying that he can only receive deposits at this time. Is it the site, or is he just not eligible anymore??

varsol
11-08-2012, 12:14 PM
Hello all. Similar to cadillaclove, when I attempt to access eCommDirect and enter my loved one's id and name, I am brought to a page that claims "Offender may receive deposits only at this time." I'm wondering if this is a permanent condition or if it is temporary? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

TDCJ Commissary
11-08-2012, 12:26 PM
Hello all. Similar to cadillaclove, when I attempt to access eCommDirect and enter my loved one's id and name, I am brought to a page that claims "Offender may receive deposits only at this time." I'm wondering if this is a permanent condition or if it is temporary? Any help would be greatly appreciated.


If the unit is on lockdown, the direct purchase program is temporarily unavailable for all offenders on that unit. They may still receive a deposit, just no groceries.

What unit are they currently assigned?

EJ

ElleTTX
11-08-2012, 01:16 PM
There is a glich in their system. Call the number on the bottom of the page, and walk them through the exact steps you went through to have the problem show up.

In my particular case, I had half-way filled the cart and then accidentally packed out to the "home page" thinking that was where I needed to go in order to also add a deposit.

Instead it took me to the sign in page, and once I signed in, it showed me the same message you are getting about "only being able to receive deposits."

I waited a couple of days in case somehow the non-purchase had triggered the 24 hour limit (only one purchase per day), but the status did not change.

So I called the number at the bottom of the page and walked them through it. They understand that the system is still new and quirky and has a lot of bugs in it. They were very helpful and set up a problem ticket for me, and ended up calling me back that same day to let me know they had "reset" the account.

At that point I was able to get in and make an order. At that point in time I was the first "error" that they'd seen like that... it would be helpful if they heard from you so that they can find the bugs.

cadillaclove
11-08-2012, 02:15 PM
If the unit is on lockdown, the direct purchase program is temporarily unavailable for all offenders on that unit. They may still receive a deposit, just no groceries.

What unit are they currently assigned?

EJ

hes at stiles and yes they are on lockdown right now. thanks for the info!! :D

cadillaclove
11-08-2012, 02:39 PM
There is a glich in their system. Call the number on the bottom of the page, and walk them through the exact steps you went through to have the problem show up.

In my particular case, I had half-way filled the cart and then accidentally packed out to the "home page" thinking that was where I needed to go in order to also add a deposit.

Instead it took me to the sign in page, and once I signed in, it showed me the same message you are getting about "only being able to receive deposits."

I waited a couple of days in case somehow the non-purchase had triggered the 24 hour limit (only one purchase per day), but the status did not change.

So I called the number at the bottom of the page and walked them through it. They understand that the system is still new and quirky and has a lot of bugs in it. They were very helpful and set up a problem ticket for me, and ended up calling me back that same day to let me know they had "reset" the account.

At that point I was able to get in and make an order. At that point in time I was the first "error" that they'd seen like that... it would be helpful if they heard from you so that they can find the bugs.

i called the number and yes they said they reset the account, but its still saying the same thing. my guess is cuz theyre on lockdown like mr.johnston said... or atleast thats what im hoping. thank you for your help as well :D

James' Sister
11-08-2012, 03:53 PM
I called that number (877-452-9060) & she said I could only deposit $50 or purchase items for $50 per quarter. She said to look on the TDCJ website but I didn't see that written out anywhere. I have really messed up for the holiday season if that is true because now he won't get a Care Package. My brother is at Stiles so I assume the message about only receiving deposits is due to the lockdown, but it is a mute point if the deposit counts towards the $50 per quarter. I am so hoping she is wrong!!!!
Tomorrow I"m going to call TDCJ & ask specifically if that is true.

varsol
11-08-2012, 11:10 PM
If the unit is on lockdown, the direct purchase program is temporarily unavailable for all offenders on that unit. They may still receive a deposit, just no groceries.

What unit are they currently assigned?

EJ

She is located in Murray.

lmanoy
11-09-2012, 05:27 AM
Hello, wanting to know are family members going to be able to put money on their loved ones trust fund account at any time through the system or just when we are ordering something for that quarter. Also are we going to be able to do an extra spend this quarter since Christmas is coming up?

pgstr
11-09-2012, 06:33 AM
I called that number (877-452-9060) & she said I could only deposit $50 or purchase items for $50 per quarter. She said to look on the TDCJ website but I didn't see that written out anywhere. I have really messed up for the holiday season if that is true because now he won't get a Care Package. My brother is at Stiles so I assume the message about only receiving deposits is due to the lockdown, but it is a mute point if the deposit counts towards the $50 per quarter. I am so hoping she is wrong!!!!
Tomorrow I"m going to call TDCJ & ask specifically if that is true.

I deposited over $50 at the same time I ordered a hygiene pack. Website says you can deposit up to $9,999 I believe.

TDCJ Commissary
11-09-2012, 08:29 AM
I called that number (877-452-9060) & she said I could only deposit $50 or purchase items for $50 per quarter. She said to look on the TDCJ website but I didn't see that written out anywhere. I have really messed up for the holiday season if that is true because now he won't get a Care Package. My brother is at Stiles so I assume the message about only receiving deposits is due to the lockdown, but it is a mute point if the deposit counts towards the $50 per quarter. I am so hoping she is wrong!!!!
Tomorrow I"m going to call TDCJ & ask specifically if that is true.

The deposits do not have any restrictions on frequency, only the amount ($9,999). I think that we are still in the "baby steps" phase of troubleshooting issues and problems. We called Texas.gov this morning with the information you provided to let all of their help desk staff know exactly what the parameters are with this program. The $50 for this quarter will still be available for your brother.

We will have a holiday pack available in the next two weeks. We have sold it in the commissaries for the past few years and is a good package. I think the price for this year will be around $15. Keep checking the website as the products can change daily.

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

TDCJ Commissary
11-09-2012, 08:41 AM
Hello, wanting to know are family members going to be able to put money on their loved ones trust fund account at any time through the system or just when we are ordering something for that quarter. Also are we going to be able to do an extra spend this quarter since Christmas is coming up?


You can make a deposit as many times during the month as you would like. The only restriction is $9,999 per transaction.

We are looking at a way to do a Christmas spend. If we reset everyone December 1st, this would allow an additional purchase for the fourth quarter. However, if someone has not made a purchase before December 1st, they would only get to spend the $50 in December. We are still kicking the idea around.

Let me know if you have any additional questions.

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

Sunflow
11-09-2012, 10:08 AM
I was wondering what happened. I was trying to buy things for my LO but accidentally (absent-minded me) tried to use the wrong credit card, which is mine, but had no money... Anyway, I canceled purchase and started over again. This time there was no chili no beans for sale anymore. I wonder was it just sold out or was this some glitch? I tried to look for it manually and also tried to search it, but it was gone. I bought other products instead, no problems, but I just wanted to let you know, just in case :-)

TDCJ Commissary
11-09-2012, 10:43 AM
I was wondering what happened. I was trying to buy things for my LO but accidentally (absent-minded me) tried to use the wrong credit card, which is mine, but had no money... Anyway, I canceled purchase and started over again. This time there was no chili no beans for sale anymore. I wonder was it just sold out or was this some glitch? I tried to look for it manually and also tried to search it, but it was gone. I bought other products instead, no problems, but I just wanted to let you know, just in case :-)


We are looking at the inventories across the state every morning. If more than half of the stores are out of an item, we are pulling it from the list. We are working on an automated process to do this at night so that we are not pulling the rug out from under anyone during their ordering process. Sorry we grabbed your chili before you could complete your order. We are really trying to fill these orders without having to substitute too many items.

Let us know if you have any additional questions.

Eric Johnston
TDCJ

legaleagletx
11-09-2012, 12:15 PM
I sent some candy and a Dr. Pepper to my LO in Neal today, basically as a test of the system. Everythng seemed to work on my end. I did note a charge for processing that made the whole thing about twice the price of my purchase. I didn't see anything on the site that explained the processing charge.

Also - my LO would like a new pair of shoes. The commissary does not have his size. Is there some way we could arrange it so that I could order the right size of the same kind of shoe that the commissary sells and have it delivered to him or to the commissary?

airmiles
11-10-2012, 02:17 AM
I sent some candy and a Dr. Pepper to my LO in Neal today, basically as a test of the system. Everythng seemed to work on my end. I did note a charge for processing that made the whole thing about twice the price of my purchase. I didn't see anything on the site that explained the processing charge.


It says, I think in the terms and conditions that you have to agree to before you can purchase anything, that a service charge of $3.75 will be levied on each transaction to cover the costs of setting up and maintaining the website. You know Texas, they wont give anything for free. If the previous fiscal projections on things like the medical tax are anything to go by, then it will take forever for Texas to recover even a small portion of the costs this way because not enough people will use the system.

I'm still concerned that these orders being filled from the commisarry will take priority over inmates going to the store themselves with their own money, and will lead to a greater divide between those who have items and those who have money but cannot purchase what they want/need because the commisarry is empty.

TDCJ Commissary
11-12-2012, 07:27 AM
I sent some candy and a Dr. Pepper to my LO in Neal today, basically as a test of the system. Everythng seemed to work on my end. I did note a charge for processing that made the whole thing about twice the price of my purchase. I didn't see anything on the site that explained the processing charge.

Also - my LO would like a new pair of shoes. The commissary does not have his size. Is there some way we could arrange it so that I could order the right size of the same kind of shoe that the commissary sells and have it delivered to him or to the commissary?


Have your loved one go to the commissary and request the size shoe he needs. If the manager does not have it in stock, we can more than likely get it. If it is not a size we stock, we may be able to special order them. Currently, we can get sizes 6-18 in D to 4E widths. If he has any problems through the normal channels and you know his size, let me know and I will get a pair shipped to Neal.

Eric Johnston

HoldinItDown2010
11-12-2012, 07:28 AM
Mr Johnston how long after we order a package until it is delivered?

TDCJ Commissary
11-12-2012, 08:59 AM
Mr Johnston how long after we order a package until it is delivered?


We are striving for a 72 hour delivery time frame. All weekend sales are processed on Monday morning and will be delivered by Wednesday. We run a report here in our offices every morning for any orders that have not been delivered with the 72 hours and call the units to see what has caused the delay.

Let me know if you have any other questions.

HoldinItDown2010
11-12-2012, 09:15 AM
We are striving for a 72 hour delivery time frame. All weekend sales are processed on Monday morning and will be delivered by Wednesday. We run a report here in our offices every morning for any orders that have not been delivered with the 72 hours and call the units to see what has caused the delay.

Let me know if you have any other questions.

I'm wondering if I place an order next Wednesday will it be delivered by Friday due to the holiday Thursday

TDCJ Commissary
11-12-2012, 10:53 AM
I'm wondering if I place an order next Wednesday will it be delivered by Friday due to the holiday Thursday


All commissary staff will be off on Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving, and will not open on the weekend, so we have a four day stretch where the stores are closed. To guarantee delivery before Thanksgiving, this pushes the cutoff time back to this coming Friday. However, we are going to really strive to get everything delivered next week prior to the holiday.

Hope this helps...

msp6747
11-12-2012, 11:53 AM
Mr Johnston so as of right now yall are trying to set it up so we are able to send a christmas package . even if we have already sent the quarterly 50 .

bjcldfrk
11-12-2012, 01:07 PM
You have to look at the items closely. $3 for 3oz of coffee? This looks like the packages that come in hotel rooms. I think most are just smaller sizes. I wish they would show the oz on the hygene products because they look like sample sizes.