Clerks Corner: Technology changes affect Moffat County Clerk and Recorder’s Office
The county clerk serves a humble, yet essential role in the public sector. Our office has many duties. We issue motor vehicle titles and registrations, file and manage important records, issue marriage licenses and liquor licenses and ensure elections are conducted in a fair and accurate manner. We also record the Board of County Commissioners’ public meetings for legal and historical purposes and for the sake of public transparency. Government would have a difficult time functioning without the important work performed in the clerk and recorder’s office.
Technology is rapidly changing, and this has had a huge impact on our work. State lawmakers recognized this challenge and, in 2002, established the Electronic Recording Fund. This is a restricted fund that is financed by at least half of all document surcharge fees to a special account, which is maintained by the Colorado Secretary of State’s office. The unremitted portion of these fees is used exclusively to subsidize the cost of acquiring and maintaining technology for electronic recording.
In 2011, we decided to invest in the I-County software, which is a program that imports the county’s real estate records to the internet. It allows users the capability to search for and print records. Users are charged a daily or monthly subscription fee for this service. This revenue helps pay the annual maintenance and software contract and also supports the continuation of our back-indexing project. The project includes the scanning, indexing and importing of past records.
Many of us have a “to-do” list, but I have also discovered the benefit of keeping a “did-it” list. This has been a powerful motivational tool that has helped me monitor progress in this very tedious and monotonous task. Following is a list of some of our progress to date.
- A complete inventory of all recorded documents and approval of the records retention plan and State Archive Model.
- Every book and record has been digitized, along with rebinding and encapsulation of real estate books, grantor/grantee indices, marriage records, judgments and miscellaneous records.
- Countywide implementation of ScanDoc software. This office, alone, has completed the scan and index of all BOCC minutes, resolutions, brand books, election books, Shadow Mountain Village Local Improvement District, auto liens, titles, motor homes, marriage applications and end-of-month records.
- Complete indexing and import of all marriage records from 1911 to the present.
- Complete indexing and import of records from 1963 through 1982.
- Imported and indexing of microfiche records from 1991 to 1996.
- We have started the first phase of indexing records from 1911 through 1962.
- All subdivision plat maps have been digitized and are available for public search.
- Indexed and scanned the road history books and ditch plat records.
- Purchased the upgrades and replacement of all the recording computers, as well as a new microfiche reader/printer.
I-County has been a huge success. This technology grants the public and county department’s easy, convenient access to public records. We always strive to create a powerful network that will enhance government transparency and citizen engagement.
As the county clerk and recorder, the preservation of these historic records has been one of my major goals. This project has been a massive undertaking, and I’m so proud of our accomplishments to date. I want to express my sincere gratitude to Debbie Winder, Jill McCandless, Shamra Grajeda, Mimi Chaillot and Amanda Tomlinson for their efforts!
Lila Herod is Moffat County clerk and recorder.