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County earns award for use of system

Profile image for By Bj Lewis / Staff Writer
By Bj Lewis / Staff Writer

A number of Denton County officials and staff were recently named in an award recognizing innovative use of the Odyssey Case Management System.

Each year, Tyler Technologies, the company behind the system, receives information from all its clients on how they use the system and offers the Tyler Innovation Award for the most efficient use of it. Denton County was recognized for Odyssey’s use in bond tracking, specifically naming District Clerk Sherri Adelstein, technology director Kevin Carr, County Clerk Cynthia Mitchell and staff members Isaac White, Frances Colwick, Aundrea Kenney, Camille Franklin and D’Lynne Shelton.

“We offered the best use of the system with the most impact with efficiency and innovation,” Mitchell said. She and Adelstein presented the award to commissioners Tuesday morning.

The award was given to them last month at a conference in Austin.

“The process we highlighted was the bond program because we’re so integrated now in Denton County,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell said bond information is entered into the system by the sheriff’s office and is available to both the district and county clerk’s offices.

A bail bond company’s bonding limit is usually 10 times the collateral it has put up with the county, and it fluctuates daily. The difficulty of tracking the data in the past led to some companies going over the limit.

“This saves the county tens of thousands [of dollars], if not more. Bail bonds companies are no longer able to write outside of their bonding limit,” Mitchell said.

Before, Mitchell said, data regarding bonds, as well as tracking bail bond companies and their bonding power, tracked manually.

“It was hard on the sheriff’s office, hard on the clerks’ offices. It was a big mess,” Mitchell said. “Now they are immediately turned off; the jail will no longer accept their bonds to bond people out. It has saved countless man-hours.”

County Judge Mary Horn praised the entire group of award recipients, calling them instrumental in designing and integrating the program that she said will be a model for the state to follow.

“It’s been a long, hard process, certainly with its frustrations, but the rewards are already good,” she said. “Any place we can take advantage of technology, we like to do it. It streamlines the process and saves time, and provides efficiencies and cuts down on the number of employees you have to have, which is a benefit to the taxpayers of the county.”

BJ LEWIS can be reached at 940-566-6875 and via Twitter at @BjlewisDRC.