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Florida - Region I Facilities Discussion and information for the following facilities: Apalachee-E CI, Apalachee-W CI, Bay CF, Blackwater River CF, Calhoun CI, Century CI, Franklin CI, Gadsden CF, Graceville CF, Gulf CI, Gulf CI-Annex , Holmes CI, Jackson CI, Jefferson CI, Liberty CI, NWFRC, NWFRC Annex, Okaloosa CI, Quincy Annex, Santa Rosa CI, Santa Rosa Annex, Taylor CI, Taylor Annex, Wakulla CI, Wakulla CI Annex, Walton CI

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  #1  
Old 09-23-2007, 04:13 PM
HLR HLR is offline
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Default Graceville Correctional Facility Q&A

Anybody heard any info (i.e., name of facility, education classes, capacity of facility) on the new prison which just opened at Graceville? Thanks
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Old 09-25-2007, 04:35 PM
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I wasn't aware that it was complete until you posted this thread. Below is a link to a news broadcast about the opening. Graceville CF is a private facility operated by GEO and said to be the largest private facility in the state. The DOC hasn't added this facility to their website yet, so no info about the classes/recreation.

http://www.wmbb.com/gulfcoastwest/mb...9-17-0012.html
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Old 09-25-2007, 04:41 PM
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Here is another link that I found that lists a little bit of info about the facility itself:

http://www.thegeogroupinc.com/northamerica.asp?fid=90
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Old 09-28-2007, 03:07 AM
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Thanks for the info.
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Old 01-26-2008, 07:37 AM
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Yes, I have heard about Graceville and it's supposed to offer a lot of
religious classes and support. They also have quite a bit of educational
opportunities.
I found it on the web, but I don't know how to send a link, sorry.
Some people say private facilities are good, but I don't know that
to be a fact. From what I see they have to offer it sounds good.
Hope this helps.
mama's-tears
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Old 02-25-2008, 06:16 PM
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Hello All, My son was sent to Graceville a couple of months after they opened. It started out kinda bad with no hot water, the phones were having problems, no television and so on. They have all those things fixed now and things are getting better. The warden has already quit and a few guards were fired. They opened before they were ready in my opinion. They have computer classes and such but have yet to hook up the network, so my son says they just play around with the computers and aren't learning anything. The canteen has been upgraded and the prices dropped a little. It's not always easy to get to use the phone. I'm not sure if they only have a couple or of they have too many people wanting to use them. It took two weeks one time for my son to use the phone. Anyways, things seem to be getting better there.
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Old 02-25-2008, 06:23 PM
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They have also changed the inmates mailing address it used to go to a post office box, now it goes directly to the jail.

Inmate Name DC#
Bunk#
Graceville Correctional
5168 Ezell Rd
Graceville, Fl 32440

Phone 850-263-5500
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Old 02-28-2008, 12:06 PM
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Hi I am going to visit there soon to see my younger brother. I googled the town and they have to hotels there. It scared me. Anyone been there and know how it is in that town?
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Old 05-13-2008, 05:29 PM
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hi, my husband just got sent to graceville and i am waiting on the phone to start working. i plan on going on saturday to visit, hopefully i'll be able to visit every week. i would hate it if it was only every other week. does anyone know if i can?

i am going to call classification in the morning, but i wonder if anyone knows how to send him money in graceville? he told me govpaynow.com but he's not in thier system yet. any help would be appreciatted, the guard that just answered the phone wasn't very helpful.

thanks in advance.
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Old 05-13-2008, 06:10 PM
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I'm not 100% sure, but I believe visitation is every other weekend. Again not certain about that, but definitely call and ask because this might not be his weekend for a visit.

My husband just left another private and I didn't know you could send money to them any other way than mailing it directly to the facility. That would have been nice. When you call tomorrow I would ask for inmate accounts and see what options they give you. If you have to mail the money to the facility, be sure to ask how to make the money order out. I always had to make them out directly to my husband.
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Old 05-13-2008, 07:44 PM
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thanks i will call in the morning, i pray i get to see him every weekend. i don't know how i will be able to make it two weeks between visits, that would be horrible.

the price of the calls doubled so we can't talk near as much as we used to, i am going to be going crazy.
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Old 05-19-2008, 03:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by susansmoaks View Post
hi, my husband just got sent to graceville and i am waiting on the phone to start working. i plan on going on saturday to visit, hopefully i'll be able to visit every week. i would hate it if it was only every other week. does anyone know if i can?

i am going to call classification in the morning, but i wonder if anyone knows how to send him money in graceville? he told me govpaynow.com but he's not in thier system yet. any help would be appreciatted, the guard that just answered the phone wasn't very helpful.

thanks in advance.

Hi Susan:

My husband is currently at Graceville and has been since it first opened back in October of 2007.

I just wanted to answer a few of your questions for you...

Visitation is on both Saturday and Sunday from 8am until 2pm. You can start lining up outside the door at 6:45am. It's pretty much the same sort of routine as the state camps but it also has it's differences.

NOTHING is consistent with check-ins. It's not a bad thing however, this weekend they only allowed 1 person or 1 family in the lobby at a time to register for visitation. They don't like crowds, I suppose.

You have to fill out a form before you go inside to register which includes your name, any other visitors visiting, your personal info like address, driver's license #, make and model of car and your tag # as well. For some reason, this weekend they were pretty adamant about getting tag numbers!

Other then that, it's the same routine... metal detector, pat down search and then you're issued a green ID visitor tag to wear. When they have enough people registered, someone from the VP comes down and escorts you back to the VP were basically the same info is required from you once you're inside the VP.

The canteen food prices USE TO be comparable, however, we have noticed they have gone up some. There is a change machine for your $5, $10 and $20 bills.

They have 2 bathrooms that are CO-ED but they keep one locked at all times and the other unlocked which is nice. Who liked having to stand beside the door like a child waiting for permission to use the potty???

They are in the process of building onto the outside part of the VP. It's a slow process but you can still go out there to smoke and sit although there are no tables or anything to cover yourself from the sun. It's a concrete block.... no grass or anything.

In the lobby of the camp is a machine, kinda like an ATM machine where you can deposit money for your husband right there on the spot. It DOES NOT take change nor does it give it. You can use debit, credit (I think) and cash.... no coins allowed. Once you deposit the money into the account, your husband should have it posted on his card within minutes. It makes it convenient like that. Other wise, your husband was right... you can pay at the website (govpaynow.com) or call them directly (888-277-2535) and they also charge a fee.

As for the phone... the calls are expensive but that's because Graceville is a private camp and can set their own contractual fees since they're not state run. Is that fair.... hell no but it's how it goes. There's a $6.95 charge if you make your payment for your calls over the phone; and since I don't or have never utilized Western Union to make a phone pay, I'm not sure how much they charge.

One thing I will caution you about though... if by chance you can get the prison calls billed to your home local phone bill... don't do that. When I first set up my account with Correctional Billing Service (CBS) they were like...

"Great News! You don't need to have a pre-pay account. You can have your calls billed right on your local phone bill!" I was like... cool.... I like that. They NEVER said anything to me about a call limit or the any other discrepancies until one day, I called CBS and found out that I had a $435 phone call limit on my account. Sounds good, right? Well... wrong.

What they failed to tell me was that even though I FAITHFULLY paid my local phone bill with the collect calls added on, each month and was never late... my local phone company would take up to 3 months to forward any monies to CBS to credit my prison account... therefore... although technically I was up-to-date... in CBS's eyes.... I was "late" until they got their payment and could've had my phone turned off due to non-payment.

I was livid. I changed my account immediately to pre-pay as well as having to pay the stinkin' $6.95 fee to pay my bill over the phone but at least I have control over my calls and if my calls get cut off, it'll be because I REALLY DIDN'T pay for my calls and not because one phone company is slow in transferring monies to the other. I would've been pissed had my phone been cut-off for "non-payment" simply because CBS was waiting for Windstream to send them my payments!!!

What else can I tell you? I know... I know... I'm long winded but I just want to be as helpful as I can... I know that going into a new environment has it's unfamiliar moments and at best, it's always nice if you have someone who can give you the 411 on things.

There are cameras in the VP... inside and out. They claim they can zoom in on everything and they probably can. Whatever. There are cards, games and games for the children to play with. The officers (for the most part) are pretty good. I've been to quite a few camps (my husband has been down for 23 years now) so I've seen my share inside the state run camps and I will say... at least in the VP... there are some nice ones.

NOW... MOST IMPORTANTLY....

Graceville as you probably already know is run by a company called GEO. Although our husbands are technically Florida DOC inmates, they are under GEO while at Graceville. The FLDOC will NOT handle certain Graceville inmate issues unless it has to do with inmate abuse, transfers, and I believe certain classification issues. Everything else is handled through and by GEO.

Now... there is a company that resides within the walls of Graceville. They DO NOT work FOR or AGAINST GEO or Graceville nor do they work FOR or AGAINST the inmates. They are there to over see that the camp is run fairly and just for not only inmates and staff but for the visitors as well.

If you ever... EVER have an issue at Graceville... you can contact Mr. John Stanley at extension 106. He is a WONDERFUL...... W-O-N-D-E-R-F-U-L
man and he is as fair as they come! He usually makes his rounds in the VP on Sundays.... talking to inmates and their families making sure things are going ok for them. If not, he has a pad in which he jots down everything... (he's a diligent note-taker!!) and he gets things accomplished!! Trust me... I know!! It is Mr. Stanley's job to do what he does... he is there to make sure conditions are adequate for all parties involved and he will tell you to your face.... CALL ME IF YOU NEED ANYTHING!!!! Many of us have utilized his services and seen the outcome of things improved.

God Bless Mr. Stanley.... he is the best!

So... other then you probably going dizzy and "blind" from my response (and I do apologize), I hope what I have told you, helps. If you need anything more... please PM me or send me an email or visit my page on Myspace... all of which are on my profile here.

I hope you have/had a wonderful visit.

Take Care ~
(Doing) Time

P.S. If you need hotel info, I also have info on that as well.

Last edited by (Doing) Time; 05-19-2008 at 03:33 PM..
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  #13  
Old 05-19-2008, 05:48 PM
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Thanks (Doing)Time for updating the info on Graceville. I'm glad visitation is NOT every other weekend as we've had at other private facilities.
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Old 05-20-2008, 07:07 PM
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thanks, i was there last weekend and i'll be there every weekend from now on. it was fine, really laid back.
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Old 05-23-2008, 09:46 AM
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Susan, you must have had a better time then we did. My bf and I were there this Saturday 5/17, we stood (OUTSIDE) in line for 2 hours, were behind another lady who had allready been there 2 hours. Then we BOTH tested positive on the Ion scan. Our friend inside had allready warned us about the scan and for us to bring wipes. Both of us used the wipes twice and another girl let everyone who wanted it in line use her hand sanitizer. Of course since that happened and I have researched Ion Scanner. We didn't take half the precautions that other people do. We gased up and stopped at three different convience stores on the way there. And as we were getting ready to go through the metal detector I pulled the cash (most of it collected at the different stores on the way there) out of my back pocket and handed it to my bf to count because you need to know how much you are bringing in. We will definetly try again but with much more attention to what we come in contact with beginning the day before. I will admit both the women c/os running the front desk were very appoligetic about the amount of time it was taking to process us in. We were told that it was VERY unusal for it to take that long. Also, they were VERY nice and kinda acted like POSITIVE (FALSE) testing happens on a regual basis. The gave us some of the same suggestion about making sure it didn't happen again as those that I have found on this web site. We were also told that Sundays are less busy. If anyone has any questions I would be happy to pass on what little I DO know since I was there recently. And had 2 hours to talk to the regulars in line.

Last edited by Tia63; 05-23-2008 at 09:48 AM..
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Old 05-23-2008, 07:07 PM
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tia, that sounds awful, just keep your head up! i got in no problem. i didn't know anything about the ion scanner thing and didn't do anything but i was negative both on saturday and sunday. i know that money has traceable amounts of coke on it so that's probably the problem.
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Old 06-03-2008, 11:19 PM
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Wow! Thanks a million (doing) time, you really provided a lot of helpful information. My husband just got to Graceville this week. I live in KS, so I won't be visiting any time soon. But when I do go, I feel I will be well prepared!
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Old 06-03-2008, 11:22 PM
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Tia63, thanks to you for mentioning the Ion thingy. I have never heard about that. Also, does anyone know what happens to the money in an inmate's state account once they are transferred to a private facility?
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Old 06-05-2008, 05:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dee1one View Post
Tia63, thanks to you for mentioning the Ion thingy. I have never heard about that. Also, does anyone know what happens to the money in an inmate's state account once they are transferred to a private facility?

it took about two weeks for my husbands to get transferred over.
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Old 06-05-2008, 06:22 PM
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Originally Posted by dee1one View Post
Wow! Thanks a million (doing) time, you really provided a lot of helpful information. My husband just got to Graceville this week. I live in KS, so I won't be visiting any time soon. But when I do go, I feel I will be well prepared!
Noooo problem with the info. Like I said... it's nice having someone give you a "heads up" BEFORE you get there. I'll be going back this month, the weekend of the 14th & 15th so if there are any other changes; I'll be sure to post them!!

And for sure... this time too... I'll be bringing rolls of quarters for the "just-in case-the-change-machine-decides-not-to-work" again. What a pain in the butt that was!!! Eh well... you live and learn!!

Dee... let me know when you decide or able to make a visit; who knows, maybe I can plan something around the same time and we can meet up!

Take Care ~
(Doing) Time
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Old 06-05-2008, 09:36 PM
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Hello everyone

I just wanted to share what little I know about Graceville CF so far. My guy was transferred there last Thursday, I received a letter from him, from there, on Monday (note that I'm four states away, in Kentucky), and he called me on Wednesday (yesterday), just to give you an idea of the timeline so far. The first thing he wanted to tell me was that his CO told a group of them, in no uncertain terms, that she did not want to receive phone calls from their families because she was simply too busy. She does not want phone calls.

He was surprised and really pleased with the gym equipment and the number and types of classes they have available. He said he has heard that it is difficult to get a job and there are waiting lists, but I think he already has one. He's not able to access his inmate fund account yet.

He mentioned that some of the rules were different because it is a privately run facility, and that in general, there are some good things and some not so good things, but overall, he feels extremely lucky to have been sent there, even though he had never even heard of it before getting there a week ago today.

He was at RMC in Lake Butler for 28 days before being transferred to Graceville. The few belongings he had, including letters, pictures, paper and stamps, a radio, new gym shorts, etc. were sent with him.

One thing that really surprised him was that breakfast was brought to them in the dorm, AND lunch, AND dinner. He just couldn't believe this and said it was so different from other places. From what he's told me about the meals, they seem exceptionally good.

He signed up for three classes, two that last four weeks and one that lasts ten months, I think. He is eager to get his daily routine figured out, once he has an idea of his work schedule.

One other thing that he really likes is that they are able to take their radios out to the rec yard to listen to while they work out (with earbuds, of course). He said it was super hot on the rec yard, at least 100 degrees, but that there is at least some sort of roof-like structure over the bikes and treadmills, or something like that.

Our phone calls went from just under $2 to just over $5 with CBS handling them all on a prepaid account. He said that the guys who take classes carry their books back with them after class is over so that they can study, which I thought was great and he did too.

I noticed that the capacity there is 1500 and that he was number 1512 the day I looked. (Wish I could remember where I found this...) What that tells me is that he waited for almost a month while they looked for a place that had room and that, even after a month, there wasn't a place with room. I could be wrong, but that's what it seems like to me.

Anyway, I could hear the relief in his voice and great big gratitude for having ended up at Graceville; so, I guess that makes it a little better for both of us. I'm actually really glad about it. And yes, he is someone who has a fairly extensive knowledge of prisons and is a good judge of one versus another.

I wanted to share what I know with others here who have someone there, especially since it's new and there's not much info posted on it yet.

Best of luck to you all.

Still Here...after all these years...
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Old 06-05-2008, 09:40 PM
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I thought of one more thing - he said there are 5 phones and that even though the place is packed full, he didn't think he'd have to wait in line to call me. It seemed to me that he thought 5 was a lot or maybe the most he'd ever seen. I guess we'll find out about waiting in line as time goes on.
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Old 06-13-2008, 10:21 AM
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Default Update on accessing funds after transfer and other stuff

Just an update to let you know that it took 12 days for his funds to be made available. He said that they only get to order from the canteen once a week, on Tuesdays, and that his money happened to become available that same day, 12 days after he got there.

What they order on Tuesday, they receive the following Saturday; then, what they order the next Tuesday will be delivered the following Sunday; so the weekend delivery days alternate from week to week.

He said that mail I sent to Lake Butler two or three weeks ago, just arrived with a new load of 26 inmates from Lake Butler last night. So far, mail to and from Graceville is about twice as slow as what we were used to at RMC, taking about 6-8 days to arrive whereas RMC mail took about 3-4 days. He said the mailroom is backed up because they only have 3 or 4 mailroom workers.

He is out of envelopes, ordered them Tuesday, will get them Saturday, and then be able to resume sending letters. He said he doesn't like the only paper they have available, which is legal pads (he likes notebook paper), but I said that just gives him more room to write more (which I like).

I'm looking forward to updates from others here on this forum.

Take care.
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Old 07-10-2008, 11:31 AM
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What is the Ion Scan and what are they scanning for?
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Old 07-10-2008, 07:21 PM
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What is the Ion Scan and what are they scanning for?
It is a scanner used to screen visitors for drugs. It is often said that it does not read properly and detects falsely as you can get traces of drugs from money, etc.
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