Judge Thompson Receives Technology Training
Candler County Probate Judge Tony Thompson is proud to announce that the Court has begun to utilize the P.C.I.S. (Probate Court Information System) technology provided by the State of
Georgia's Administrative Office of the Courts. On Friday, November 20, 2009 the Candler County Probate Court began full installation of the state funded technology assistance program. "Good timing, good people and the Good Lord allowed us to get this up and running for just the price of a few surge suppressors and an extension cord from our local Ace Hardware, said Thompson.
"We knew the state offered software assistance at a huge savings to the county; nearly ten thousand dollars annual savings compared to purchasing the same software through a private vendor", said Thompson. "Our problem was getting computers to run the software," he added.
"With the help of Emanuel County Probate Judge Don Wilkes and the assistance of the Candler County Tax Commissioners office we got the problem solved and gave the Court a technology facelift at a savings of over $12,000 to the people of Candler County." "Judge Wilkes alerted
us that a satellite office in Macon was closing and if we acted fast we might get some of those computers before they were relocated to other parts of the state. I put in a request with Jorge Basta of the AOC's Information Technology Division and alerted him to our situation. We were then able to secure 2 refurbished primary computers and a back up computer paired with a scanner, along with a refurbished laser printer all at no cost to the county. The AOC's technology contact Richard Denney advised us that we could indeed get those computers
networked together and that he and AOC technology support agent Kriste Pope could provide installation and onsite training to the Court also at no cost to the county."
During November the installation and networking was completed and two days of on-site training were provided by the AOC to Judge Thompson and Clerk Lisa Joyner. December marks the beginning of full implementation of the Probate Court Information System for the Court.
"Customers will notice cleaner and crisper forms as well as some other conveniences that come with the system. We have now enhanced our ability to utilize Georgia's Vital Events Information System which allows customers to purchase a certified copy of their birth certificate from any of the 159 counties in Georgia right here in Metter. You don't have to travel or write to your birth county any longer. We can get that for you right here", said Thompson. "As we get more familiar with the program customers will also benefit from faster service and the Court will have an accelerated way to communicate with customers and the State Archives," added Thompson. "The Court will still maintain hard copies of all records and now has the technology to preserve older records by scanning them and saving them to our backup system", said Thompson.
"Of course confidentiality and privacy are still foremost concerns and the PCIS system enhances our security by giving us another way to backup storage," added Thompson.
"We are proud that we are able to provide these enhanced services at no extra cost to the people of Candler County and hope to offer more in the future", said Thompson.
License, Permit, Form Changes for 2011 in Probate Court
“Each year the varied services provided by Probate Court are affected by legislation and regulations and this year is no different,” noted Candler County Probate Judge Tony Thompson. “Some of the changes are minor but customers will benefit from knowing about them”, he added.
With regards to firearms licensing, recent legislation has required that all customers must reapply when their licenses expire. This requires a new background check and eliminates “renewals”. “Licenses are still good for five years and the current total fee is $75. And now that our Probate Court Information System is up to full speed, we have begun sending courtesy reminders to those whose licenses have recently expired or are nearing expiration,” said Thompson.