Inside the Chautauqua County Jail, there's a new form of communication for Nicholas Lombardozzi and the other 300 inmates.

“You get to see their face, the home that you use to live in,” said Lombardozzi.  “I have a brother in Italy actually, in the Air Force, and he's calling, so I get to see him, which I wouldn't be able to do it if it wasn't for these."

Chautauqua County Sheriff Joe Gerace has implemented a new video program that will allow inmates to visit their friends, family, and lawyers on-line.

According to Sheriff Gerace, the program is similar to Skype.  Visitors have to register through the sheriff's office website then pay for minutes.   By using a computer or smart phone, they can then communicate with the inmates from home.

"In this day and age, the day of technology, this is something that is long overdue," said Sheriff Gerace.  "We can reduce the number of real visits, face-to-face visits and at the same time, make it more convenient for family members who might not have the opportunity to see their loved ones."

To ensure appropriate conduct, Sheriff Gerace says all of the calls are monitored and prisoners can only use the service based on good behavior.

"It's always nice to see your friends and family,” said Lombardozzi.  “The phone is nice too, but this is just different.  You can see their face, maybe some of the pets, familiar places."

For more information on the program or to register, visit:

http://www.sheriff.us/