By Roland Gilbert, Communications Specialist
Improved operations by Collin County have boosted the efficiency of its competency case management for the mentally ill and modernized its delivery of foreclosure information to save customers’ time. The two new initiatives have simultaneously enhanced county services and saved thousands of taxpayer dollars.
In recognition, the Texas Association of Counties (TAC) has given two 2018 County Best Practices Awards to the county for its new Competency Coordinator (CC) designee and modernized foreclosure notice system.
New Competency Coordinator
Designating one contact for all of Collin County’s competency cases significantly improved its established Mental Health Managed Counsel (MHMC) program/Indigent Defense. The CC oversees early identification, communication and coordinated efforts between the court, attorneys, doctors and jail to reduce the time required to resolve cases.
“Competency cases are a problem statewide,” said Collin County Chief Attorney Alyse Ferguson. “Having a CC has resulted in a savings in jail days [alone] of over $700,000.”
Modernized Foreclosure Notices
Collin County Clerk Stacey Kemp spearheaded an effort to make accessing foreclosure information easier. Now, residents and investors can view a map, street view, appraised value, deed history and Trustee Notice on the county’s website or via mobile app and forego in-person visits to multiple county offices.
“We feel that we have provided our citizenry an effective way to engage with their government,” said Kemp.
Also noteworthy are the cost savings and improved services for taxpayers. The efficiencies now allow County Clerk’s Office staff to spend over 1,433 hours per year on other work.
“I’m encouraged by the tremendous concerted effort of Collin County’s officials and staff to improve the judicial system, better serve those with mental illness and run an efficient organization,” said TAC Executive Director Susan Redford. “We hope these awards inspire other counties to leverage more best practices and continue discovering new solutions to better serve Texans.”
The biennial program recognizes the efforts of county leaders in implementing innovative, scalable and replicable solutions to challenges facing local government throughout Texas. Areas of focus include financial and general management, public safety and corrections, health and human services, technology, community improvements and other county-related responsibilities.
Collin County was one of eight Texas counties selected to receive a TAC 2018 County Best Practices Award. Look for more spotlights in future issues of County magazine. Learn more about the County Best Practices Awards program at www.county.org/bestpractices.