County Clerk Reveals Savings | Politics
Released by Commissioners Court.
After four months in office, Smith County Clerk Karen Phillips says newly implemented policies, restructuring and research have saved the taxpayers of Smith County around $41,000.
Mrs. Phillips, who took office on the third of January, made some policy and personnel changes in the first few weeks that she says are already paying off.
“We eliminated two paid part-time positions that were staffed by a “temp” agency and contacted the Smith County Volunteer Coordinator to help us find a match for our department,” Mrs. Phillips said. Now trained volunteers visit the office at least twice a week at no cost to the County with a monthly saving estimated at $2,000 according to Mrs. Phillips.
Mrs. Phillips also upgraded the technology in the land records department to make records processing more efficient and convenient to the customer.
“I observed as each document traveled from the customer’s hands to nine different clerks on two separate floors of our building while being processed and believed the methodology could be improved,” Mrs. Phillips said.
Now that the land records department has been consolidated to one floor and digital scanning has been integrated, customers can have their documents scanned and immediately handed back to them. Streamlining the process is saving time, manpower, paper, envelopes, labels and postage. By Mrs. Philips’ estimate, the county saved $3,500 in April alone.
Mrs. Phillips has also coordinated with the Tyler Postmaster to streamline document shipping and receiving, started charging shipping and postage for data CD’s and is in the process of making on-site credit card readers available for customers.
In review of the County Clerk’s invoices and contracts with Smith County’s current indexing and imaging vendor, Mrs. Phillips discovered errors in billing resulting in a credit of $30,052 being returned to Smith County.
“My goal is to make the County Clerk’s office as efficient and customer-friendly as possible and to save the tax payers money by watching every penny spent.” Mrs. Phillips said.
The County Clerk serves as the official record keeper for the official Public Records involving real property, records all documents for County Court, Commissioners Court, and the County Courts at Law. The Smith County Clerk’s Office is located at 200 E. Ferguson, Tyler, Texas 75701.
For additional information regarding this Press Release, please contact Adrienne Graham, Smith County Public Relations Liaison at (903) 590-4607.
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