Posted: Thursday, June 12th 2014 at 12:24pm
Court clerk's office in Hall to end passport service
By Derreck Booth Editor
GAINESVILLE - The Clerk of Superior & State Courts in Hall County announced this week that the office will stop offering passport service on June 30.
Reached by e-mail Thursday, Charles Baker outlined his reasons for ending the service. They included a budget and staff decreases and additional duties for the office during Baker's first five years in office.
"I appreciate the Clerks of Court in White, Lumpkin, Dawson and Habersham County for offering to assist customers in processing passports and I have posted their contact information on the Hall County website," Baker said in an e-mail statement.
Baker also said time is also an issue. He said staff has looked at time spent processing passport applications as well as time needed to complete training and provide information during audits.
"The numbers indicate one full time person would not be able to handle these duties," Baker said.
Statutorily required duties the Clerk’s Office assumed in the first five years Baker has been in office. (source: Clerk of Courts.)
File Division created in 2010
2010 – Clerk's Office assumed all responsibility for tracking, pulling, filing, and transporting case files to and from courts and judge’s offices and for public needs. This division averaged 7,800 monthly transactions during 2013, or 93,600 for the year. This division also pulls files from our storage facility and files them back.
Criminal Division duties increased when the process of reporting dispositions to GCIC and DDS changed in 2010.
(GCIC – Georgia Crime Information Center) (DDS – Department of Driver Services)
2010 – Clerk’s Office began reporting all criminal dispositions electronically. This replaced the paper system where dispositions were mailed to these State agencies and they were responsible for entering the info onto an offender’s record. WE now enter this info directly on an offender’s criminal history and driving record. Accuracy is critical. We reported 10,314 dispositions to DDS in 2013.
2013 – Clerk’s Office assumed the duties of restricting criminal histories. This process had been done by GCIC until there was a change in the law shifting the duty to the local level. We estimate there will be approximately 3,600 restrictions annually.
Board of Equalization oversight was moved from the Tax Assessor’s Office to the Clerk’s Office in 2011.
Duties include, but are not limited to, the recruitment of members, processing appointments, scheduling training, scheduling hearings while coordinating with the tax assessors, attending hearings and providing secretarial help to the Board. There were 490 appeals in 2013 and more are expected in 2014 because of reassessment of lake properties.
Link: Clerk of Courts
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