The Allen County commissioners approved a request Friday from Recorder John McGauley for a renewal of a technology contract that will save the county more than 22 percent – from $124,000 to $95,000 annually.
The contract was renewed with Fidlar Technologies of Rock Island, Ill.
Fidlar provides the maintenance and software used for recording property documents.
McGauley took the unusual step of asking the county to eliminate his department’s entire budget total last year, noting that as property-tax revenue has declined, personnel costs have increasingly been paid through fees for recording documents and obtaining copies.
We are trying to self-fund through fees, McGauley said.
The recorder preserves documents as varied as home mortgages, neighborhood covenants, business names and military discharges.
In the past few years, technology upgrades and new software have resulted in fewer expenses through staff reduction, and revenue has increased through remote accessible services at the department’s website at www.allencountyrecorder.us.Many of the department’s 60,000 documents can be easily accessed online.
The recorder’s office offers subscriptions for those who want instant access to the county’s documents from the comfort of their own offices, McGauley said.
A mom-and-pop business may only need the service a few times a month and would pay less than a title company that would access the service almost daily, he said.
With the off-site subscriptions, the staff saves time, and the wear and tear on equipment has been reduced as subscribers download the information and make their own copies, McGauley said.