Probate judge seeks to save taxpayers money

Published 5:41pm Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Elmore County Commission may be dealing with more old business than new business at its next scheduled meeting this Monday.

Three items previously presented to the commission by Probate Judge John Enslen were tabled by commissioners and one died due to the lack of a motion.

Those three items are likely to be re-addressed by the commission Monday.

Among the top items the commission decided to table to gain more information was a proposal by Enslen to eliminate the 3 percent surcharge paid by county taxpayers who pay for tags or licenses via credit card.

Enslen explained to the commission that his office is overrun with customers who come into the office to purchase tags or licenses instead of going online to use their debit or credit card.

“So they are coming into our office, which is already understaffed, and have to pay by cash or check,” Enslen explained. “So far we have at least $10,000 in bounced checks. And in order to collect that money it may take as many as three letters that have to be written to come out of this office.”

Enslen said it would cost the county at most 75 cents per credit or debit card transaction. While it would be at a small cost, Enslen said it would be beneficial to a more “efficient” probate office and would lessen the number of people in line.

Other items for which ­Enslen is seeking approval from the commission include the advertisement for a full-time clerk as well as to make a part-time clerk position a full-time clerk at a lesser rate per hour.

Enslen explained to the commission a few weeks ago the present part-time clerk will retire at the end of the year and he would like to hire a full-time clerk at about half the hourly rate of the current part-time clerk.

Enslen said the adjustments within his office have already been made in the current fiscal year budget, which was passed by the commission almost a month ago.

Enslen is also expected to  again request an elections specialist for the upcoming elections, including the special house election set for Dec. 3.

As in his prior request, he said the position had already been budgeted in the current 2014 fiscal year budget.

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