GRANTS PASS, Ore. -- Monday was the first day the Josephine County Sheriff's Office rolled out Live Scan for concealed handgun licenses. It electronically captures finger prints instead of using the old traditional method, ink and paper. Those fingerprints are then immediately sent to the state. Concealed Weapon applicant Jonathan Aslakson was fourth in line to get his finger prints done. He said the new technology was simple and easy.
"You put your fingers right there on the screen took a little bit of work to get everything looking good but it was pretty smooth," Aslakson said.
Because the technology is so new for the Sheriff’s Office, employees are not quite used to using it and the wait times were lengthy.
"I was in the lobby for about two hours," said Aslakson.
By the end of the year, the Sheriff’s Office hopes to have wait times cut down and have everything running a lot smoother.
"Quite a difference from the hand roll that we were doing before you know with the ink roll and rolling in the ink and then you had to wipe them off and then you have to worry about the cards getting rejected," said Josephine County Sheriff’s Office Civil Manager Larry Morgan.
He said before Live Scan there was no way to figure out if the ink finger prints were usable until after they were rejected from the state days later. That means people would have to come back and have their finger prints done all over again. The Josephine County Sheriff’s Office said it took on average 45 days for people to get their concealed handgun licenses in the mail. Now it hopes to lower that 45 day window to 30 days.
"This process should speed up the application time so I'm excited to get my permit in the mail soon," said Aslakson.
The Josephine County Sheriff's Office said its jail has had Live Scan for a long time but it’s taken the office an even longer time to upgrade its technology from the old fashion ink finger printing because of lack of funding. Once the money came in it made some necessary upgrades.
“Not only were they able to hire for the jail and for patrol deputies and stuff it allowed funding for us to be able to get the [Live Scan] machine…You get a little bit of funding you can upgrade your equipment which was desperately needed for us so it's really great to have"
While it is new for The Josephine County Sheriff's Office --- it is the standard for the most counties in the state and Josephine County is playing catch up.
"Jackson County has it, Klamath County has it. Most everyone has it. We were one of the last ones to still did them all ink printed so it's nice to be able to go in there and say ‘Yeah we have those two and it works.’" Morgan added.
The Jackson County Sheriff's Office says it got its first live scan machines more than a decade ago thanks to a grant from the state. Since then it’s had to update the machines a few times and it gets pricey.
"I think the last time it cost us $35,000 to upgrade our machines to the current standard but that's a cost we know is coming so we can plan for that," said Jackson County Sheriff’s Office Corrections Bureau Captain Dan Penland.
Now that the Josephine County sheriff's Office has the laser finger printing technology, it plans to use the service for more than Concealed Weapon Licenses.