school bus mountains colorado rural

Modern equipment and user-friendly software systems are some of the purchases rural county clerks can make, thanks to a series of grants totaling $723,000 that Secretary of State Jena Griswold announced Monday. 

“The Electronic Recording Technology Board is helping Colorado counties upgrade technologies to meet their constituents’ needs,” said Griswold, referring to the board that formed in 2016 to help county clerks preserve, maintain and upgrade records-recording systems through the award of grants.

Among the recipients in this round of funding, Alamosa County received approximately $11,000 for its annual maintenance fees for recording software and for storage space in the uploading database iCounty.org.

“Unfortunately, Alamosa County does not generate enough funds to pay for the total fees,” Clerk & Recorder Melanie Woodward wrote to the board on Nov. 19. “The grant money that has been awarded to us has been extremely helpful in completing our digitizing project and obtaining new equipment.”

She added that title companies and researchers have complimented her office’s online system.

Teri A. Stephenson, Delta County’s clerk, said that the $28,000 she is receiving will buy a new marriage license kiosk to reduce the amount of time that couples spend in her office. The new hardware will have Spanish language capability, allow people to fill out information ahead of time on mobile devices, and be accessible for those with disabilities.

"As it is now, customers stand at the recording counter and provide information that is entered manually,” she explained. “This can lead to challenges for anyone that is in need of [Americans with Disabilities Act] accommodation.”

Stephenson will also use part of the grant to purchase a records preservation and disaster recovery module that, she said, “will help recover lost information in the event of a disaster. Or if other events were to occur, the county would be able to immediately recover all damaged data and images.”

The other counties to receive grants and the amounts provided are as follows:

  • Custer County: $31,000 for digitization and indexing historical land records.
  • Otero County: $183,000 for digitization and indexing historical land records, and the creation of an Otero County searchable website.
  • Saguache County: $88,000 for land records indexing and coverage of annual maintenance fees.
  • Moffat County: $32,000 for missing image import process, document auditing and coverage of annual maintenance fee.
  • La Plata County: $350,000 for extensive hardware replacement, and digitization and indexing of historical land records from 1874-1989.

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