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    Texas Counties 101

    Across the state, 254 counties serve the needs of more than 28 million Texans.

    Awards | September 07, 2023

    2018 County Best Practices Award Recipients

    Program Title: Collin County Clerk Foreclosure Notices
    County: Collin County
    Contact: Stacey Kemp, Collin County Clerk
    Phone: (972) 548-4185

    Description:  Collin County took accessing foreclosure information - a laborious, decades-old process - and made it easier and more useful to residents and potential investors. App users can now see a map, street view, appraised value, deed history and Trustee Notice from their favorite device. Clerks are now using their time and resources in other areas, saving the county approximately $28,000 annually.

    Program Title: MHMC/Indigent Defense
    County: Collin County
    Contact: Alyse Ferguson, Chief Attorney
    Phone: (214) 491-4805

    Description: To save time and money - and more importantly, provide improved services to those suffering from mental illness - the county designated a single source of contact to be a Competency Coordinator (CC). The CC oversees early identification, centralized coordination, communication and coordinated efforts for all competency cases. Since its implementation, the savings in jail days alone has been approximately $700,000.

    Program Title: Comal County Adopt-a-Roadway
    County: Comal County
    Contact: Paul Anthony, Public Information Officer
    Phone: (830) 221-1110

    Description: The county's Road Department partnered with its Geographic Information Systems (GIS) team to resurrect and modernize an abandoned 1990s Adopt-a-Roadway program. A new app makes it easy for volunteer-minded residents to serve their community and beautify the environment. Within three months, groups had adopted 22 road segments and boat ramps - more than half of the available total - for a savings of $1,000 per mile, per year for the county.

    Program Title: Evidence/Property Room Modernization
    County: Fort Bend County
    Contact: Chad Norvell, Major
    Phone: (281) 341-4705

    Description: Fort Bend County's evidence/property room now has 25 percent more usable space, is a safer environment and allows for faster evidence retrieval. Efficiency enhancements include energy-saving lighting, Epoxy flooring, dust-free shelving, new signage, improved security and the implementation of a barcoding/scanner and mobile laptop system.

    Program Title: Executive Office - Nuisance Abatement Program
    County: Hidalgo County
    Contact: J. Chris Trevino, County Operations Administrator
    Phone: (956) 292-7007

    Description: Hidalgo County implemented a Nuisance Abatement Program as an effective means to address the health and safety needs of its rural residents and the problems associated with unkempt properties. Residents are able to submit complaints related to unsanitary conditions, weedy lots, county property and drainage easements. Over 570 case have been successful closured to date.

    Program Title: I.M.P.A.C.T.S. Values Program
    County: Midland County
    Contact: Jenny Hilton, Court Administrator
    Phone: (432) 688-4310

    Description: Leading from the inside out, Midland County formed the I.M.P.A.C.T.S. Values Program in which county employees nominate coworkers for how they embody their six values - integrity, compassion, diligence, accountability, respect and trust. Honorees are recognized and awarded prizes monthly in the program that stands for Influence More People, Actions, Character, Trust and Service. Morale and enthusiasm are at an all-time high.

    Program Title: A Guide to Your County Government
    County: Washington County
    Contact: Beth Rothermel, County Clerk
    Phone: (979) 277-6216

    Description: Part county guide, part county history, Washington County published the first-of-its-kind Guide to Your Government booklet. It features current county officials and department heads with descriptions of the function of each office, along with a list of past officials. Available in print and online, county personnel and the public can reference who's who and what's what, effectively making county government more understandable and accessible.

    Program Title: Electronic Incident Form
    County: Williamson County
    Contact: Heather Kirkwood, Risk & Safety Coordinator
    Phone: (512) 943-1533

    Description: Williamson County streamlined and modernized an antiquated system of incident reporting. A new electronic form, created by the county's HR Risk & Safety and Information Technology Services, makes processing auto, auto liability, property and mobile equipment incident and/or damage claims a breeze. A small investment has yielded annual person-hour savings of $15,900.

    Program Title: The Power of a Library Card
    County: Wilson County
    Contact: Nicki Stohr​, Librarian
    Phone: (830) 393-7361

    Description: Considering it "almost criminal" to neglect rural Wilson County residents' needs for library services, a newly hired librarian set out to ensure every incorporated area of the county had its own library. With commissioners court approval, strategic alliances helped introduce a book kiosk and two additional libraries in the county. Within two years, library visitors have more than double, saving taxpayers $1,155,325 in books they would have otherwise purchased.