Circuit Clerk Accomplishments
was elected Circuit Clerk in 1996, the Circuit Clerk’s
dedicated staff has worked tirelessly to professionalize
the office, streamline services, utilize the latest
technology, make the office accessible to all, save
taxpayer dollars and create new streams of county
income. The accomplishments are detailed by year below.
Here are the top 10 highlights:
Saved and generated more than $7.5 million for
taxpayers: The office streamlined
services and created efficiencies that saved
the taxpayers $1.9 million. Innovative
generated an additional $5.6 million income.
2. Scanned more than 10 million
documents and used technology whenever possible
to save paper for a greener
environment, time for employees and citizens using the
court system, and money for
3. Made court record searches
4. Collected $529,358.46 in
outstanding traffic fines and fees after beginning a
collection process with a contractor in January 2011.
These funds previously
Reduced 10 employee positions despite an increase in
workload, focusing on goal of
doing more with less.
6. Developed and maintained one of
the first Circuit Clerk websites in the state of
Illinois to provide information and
7. Made the Circuit Clerk’s office
accessible to people with special and diverse needs
exceeding governmental standards.
8. Opened a dialog with the public
by presenting Public Outreach Meetings
throughout Sangamon County and
bringing Circuit Clerk services such as
passports to the community.
9. Began offering
free access to legal aid in the office and
10. Created the Connect with Cash
Program that lists unclaimed funds within the
Circuit Clerk’ office on the
Clerk Phone App developed for smartphones. This
App will allow users to lookup court information for
free from their smartphone and iPad. Currently the
Android App is available on the Google App Store.
iPhone, iPad App will be available on the Apple Store
after Apple testing and approval.
Wayfinding equipment installed first, fourth, fifth,
sixth and seventh floors to assist customers in locating
the correct courtroom for their case. Kiosk
installed on the first floor so customers can lookup
their case by name or number for that day. Daily
courtroom appearance listing is also available on the
Circuit Clerk's website in real time.
Video screen installed outside of the entrance to the
Circuit Clerk’s office and the first floor displaying daily judge and
Public and private wireless Internet systems for the
Courthouse designed and implemented with the assistance
of the Circuit Clerk’s office.
Seventh Judicial Circuit
Video Arraignment system was designed and
implemented with the assistance of personnel from the Circuit Clerk’s
Printers installed in each courtroom making documents
available on demand.
Milestone achieved: scanned more than 10 million court
Citations now being scanned for inclusion in paperless
service assistance for the public added before official
equipment installed in the Record's Division to perform
records lookup and printing of scanned documents.
This saves time for the customer by allowing self
Genealogy Project Circuit
Clerk probate indexes from 1821 to 1982 are available on the
Guardianship of Minors packets made available that
includes forms and instructions as provided by the
Circuit Clerk Presents now available on the Circuit
Clerk website and YouTube, A collection of free video's
that explain various topics.
Free legal advice offered with access to computers in
the Circuit Clerk’s office or online. The in‐office
service includes headphones and printing capabilities.
Video presentations from legal experts are available
online. A link to Legal Aid Online is available 24 hours
Disaster Recovery Plan completed for back‐up of main
computer systems and all court information, court
records now are protected during disasters or power
Disaster site (Hotsite) established in a secure facility
where all electronic records and scanned documents are
Electronic delivery of an Emergency Order of Protection
to the Sangamon County Sheriff’ Department began,
allowing faster implementation of the Emergency Order.
Outstanding traffic fines and fees began to be collected
by Harris & Harris, generating substantial income for
Video screens installed in the front counter area to
display Circuit Clerk office and court information.
BrowseAloud added to website. The free software allows
the visually impaired to listen to the website content.
Civil Division relocated from the basement vault area to
the front counter on the fourth floor to provide more
efficient and convenient customer service.
Computer server upgraded and paid for with fund balance,
eliminating the need for a lease and saving the county
approximately $4,000 in interest.
Court Clerk Division created with the reorganization of
present staff to better serve the judicial needs of the
Sangamon County Courts.
Individual printing of file requests eliminated,
resulting in a savings of printer toner and more than
120 reams of paper each year.
Additional scanning stations installed to improve the
way pleadings are processed. Pleadings are scanned
before they are docketed.
Reports printed on both sides of paper, saving paper and
promoting a greener environment.
Court records made available for free on the website.
Court records now are available from any computer that
has web access. Sangamon County is the second largest
county in the state of Illinois to offer court
information without cost.
Attorney email notification system began. The email
notifies attorneys of new hearing dates or changes in
hearing dates involving their cases.
Court schedules made available by email to attorneys by
Small Claims Manual made available in Spanish.
Free legal assistance video programs made available to
the public in the office or on the website and on Access
New security program implemented for evidence vault with
electronic recording access keypad and sign‐in
Video screens installed at the entrance of the Sangamon
County Courthouse, the entrance to the Circuit Clerk’s
office and on each court floor to display daily court
E‐Pay system implemented to allow customers to pay fines
over the Internet with a credit card.
Computer‐generated warrants printed instead of
handwritten warrants, creating more accuracy and saving
New storage and handling procedures of evidence
implemented after outside expert auditor made
recommendation in 2005.
Evidence in storage audit successfully completed by an
outside expert contractor.
Information booklets and brochures printed to assist
Historical Records Preservation program developed in
partnership with the University of Illinois.
Nightly data upload of court records began for the
Victim Impact Notification system, a national program
that provides information to victims of crimes.
Attorneys and judges began meeting quarterly to review
quality control of office procedures and performance.
Many court forms automated, eliminating clerks manually
completing forms and saving hours of court preparation.
Website developed – one of the first by Circuit Clerks
in Illinois to allow free download of forms, fee
schedules and other information.
Attorney Look‐Up System created. Law offices charged a
fee for information access.
The media was given access at no charge.
All forms (except multi‐part forms) made available on
the Internet for free.
“Green”recycling program began for paper, printer
cartridges and computers.
Circuit Clerk Investment Plan created. Now recommended
by the Illinois Association of Court Clerks for other
counties to implement.
Office procedural manuals written.
“Minute entries” taken over by Circuit Clerk, previously
created by court reporters.
Document imaging program implemented.
Employee incentive programs (such as flex time)
initiated and increased production.
Voice Response Unit installed to allow citizens to pay
fines over the telephone.
Employee turnover reduced from 33 percent a year to
under 15 percent with innovative programming.
Citizen incoming telephone call duration reduced from
average of 14 minutes to 4 minutes or less through
better training and automation. Average of 5,000 calls
Voice Response Unit automated information system created
for child support information. People can access their
records a day without a live operator.
Financial records review discovers $487,595.91. Court
fines, forfeited bonds and interest on certain accounts
had not been transferred to the proper account by prior
administrations. Money was transferred to Sangamon
County General Fund.
Implementation of new audit procedures places the
Circuit Clerk's financial records in balance for the
first time in many years.
Courtrooms equipped with computers.
Collection programs created to collect past‐due fines
Passport Program started generating additional income
for Sangamon County, providing convenience for
Community Outreach program began. Informational programs
designed for civic groups, schools and more. Topics
include child support, record expungement,
landlord/tenant rights, and wills.
Automatic posting of child support payments from the
State Disbursement Unit began. Sangamon County was one
of the first and remains one of only a handful of
counties that have automatic posting.
Office made accessible to anyone with disabilities and
compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act
regulations. Improvements included: Alterations to
counters and computers available to anyone. Previously,
physically challenged individuals had to wait along the
wall for someone to help them because the counters
Preservation of 19th
Century records began. Record books dating back to the
creation of Sangamon County were bound and protected for
the first time. This ongoing and expensive program has
been paid for with existing funds.
Progressive discipline program instituted for problem
Quarterly evaluation program for all employees began.
Automated Disposition Reporting System began with the
Administrative Office of Illinois Courts.
Training program for employees began, improving the
quality and quantity of completed work.