Gary Behler To Seek Re-Election As Hamilton County Juvenile Court Clerk

Thursday, November 21, 2013
- photo by John Shackleford

Gary Behler announced Thursday morning that he will seek re-election to the position of Hamilton County Juvenile Court Clerk.  

He said at a press conference on the steps of Juvenile Court:

"In the campaign of 2010, I announced three priorities I would pursue if elected to this position: Greater Fiscal Responsibility, Enhanced Customer Service and Increased Efficiencies through the introduction of New Technologies.  I am pleased to report to you that we have met our initial goals and we are working daily to provide continuous quality improvement in each of these areas.

"This has been a great season of change.  I am very proud of how hard our staff in the Clerk’s Office has worked to accomplish so much in such a short period of time. 

"The operating budget that we have submitted for approval has decreased in each of the past three years.  Line item by line item we have identified areas to reduce expenditures. I personally review each purchase requisition to make sure our budget objectives are met.   Expenditures for paper have decreased 70% with the introduction of new technologies; postage has decreased 86% by eliminating use of costly certified mail where it is not required by statute. Each year we have been able to manage our operations within the budget approved by the Hamilton County Commission.   

"In our annual review by an external independent auditor, we have had zero audit findings for the past three years. 

"The emphasis on improving the customer service we deliver to our clients on a daily basis began on Day One.  With our first training opportunity we brought in a manager from an industry leader known for excellence in customer service to train our staff on the methods and techniques to follow to ensure that any visitor or client in our office receives optimal service.  Our staff will greet you promptly, politely and with a smile-constantly pursuing the goal of providing the best possible service to each individual that enters our office.

"By far, this is perhaps the area with the greatest improvement and impact to date.  In 2010, the two offices managed had no internal email for general use.  No documents could be handled electronically.  Since assuming office we have upgraded computer hardware and software.  In partnership with the Court and the Hamilton County IT Department we have developed a Technology Improvement Plan to move this office into the 21st Century.  Our offices have been hardwired and are now integrated with the County’s information system. We overhauled an aging client database, converting it into a new and improved data management system.  Printing costs were substantially reduced when individual printers were eliminated and desktop computers were networked to upgraded, high volume copy machines.  A pilot project for electronic orders was introduced between the Clerk’s Office and the Judge.  An electronic court docketing system was developed eliminating 86% of the printed dockets and streamlining the docketing of cases.

"On Aug. 5 of this year we began the scanning of all existing active client files into our upgraded Data Management System.  We anticipate completing Phase I by year’s end.  In January we will begin Phase 2, scanning all client files from our Child Support Division.  Our anticipated completion date for Phase 2 is the second quarter of 2014.  When completed, this project will allow our court to be the first fully electronic court in the Hamilton County Court system.  The Data Management System will allow both Divisions of the Court to be fully, electronically integrated.

 

"While we have made great strides in moving this office forward, there is still much to do.  In early 2014 we anticipate rolling out the capability of remote video hearings for those incarcerated at the Hamilton County Jail and the CCA-Silverdale Correctional Complex, thus eliminating the need for transfer of those individuals.  This will provide a tremendous cost savings to the Sheriff’s Department by reducing staffing and transportation costs while increasing the safety and security of the citizens of Hamilton County.  

"Within the coming year we anticipate the introduction of e-filing for attorneys practicing in Juvenile Court.  Other initiatives will be announced in the near future.

"As you can tell, it has been a very busy and productive three years.  As we often say in the Clerk’s Office, it is indeed a 'Work in Progress.'

"I am pleased with the accomplishments that we have achieved to date and I look forward to the challenge of continuing this momentum.  With the help of our staff and the support of the citizens of Hamilton County, we will continue to move this office forward.

"I ask for your support and for your vote in the upcoming election cycle."


Uses For Discarded Glass To Be One Of Focuses Of Green/Spaces City Recycling Grant

Finding possible uses for discarded glass will be one of the focuses for Green/Spaces under a $40,000 grant from the city related to recycling. Justin Holland, city public works director, said glass is "the most challenging" aspect in recycling at this time due to the lack of markets for recycled glass. Green/Spaces is "to launch an expansive educational marketing campaign ... (click for more)

Fort Oglethorpe Arrest Report For Sept. 16-22

Here is the Fort Oglethorpe arrest report for Sept. 16-22: 09-15-2016 Robert Edwin Gaylor, 48, of 255 Allen Street, Summerville arrested for contempt of court. Tyler Robert Abercrombie, 22, of 86 Loach Drive, Rossville arrested on an outstanding warrant. 09-16-2016 Brandon Walter Seib, 33, of 38 McBride Drive, Chickamauga arrested on charges of driving ... (click for more)

Something Beautiful Happened Monday Night - Not The Debate

Monday, Sept. 26, our first presidential debate happened; no minds were changed.  Yet something beautiful and important happened.  The Atlanta Falcons, my team, played the New Orleans Saints.  Instead of some irrelevant, broad based, screw America protest, the opposing teams locked arms in unity. I was impressed. I have been a Falcon Fan since 1971 when WMOC AM ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Arnold Palmer’s Greatness

This is hardly meant to be flippant but I’d be willing to bet I’ve been in the presence of more great people than anyone you know. I’ve never ranked them, or ever dared to wonder who was the greatest, such as Muhammad Ali or Elvis Presley, but there are two traits that those who reach the highest pinnacle have in common. First, not a one of them was any good at what made them famous ... (click for more)

Vols' Dobbs, Barnett Grab SEC Player of Week Honors

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Tennessee quarterback Joshua Dobbs is the SEC Offensive Player of the Week and end Derek Barnett the SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Week. This week's honor marks the first time this season that a Vol has earned SEC Offensive Player of the Week. Dobbs was the last UT player to win the award in Week 6 of 2015 following his performance in the Vols' ... (click for more)

Craine, Ribeiro Named SoCon Players Of The Week

Two University of Tennessee at Chattanooga football student-athletes were named Southern Conference Players of the Week, following the Mocs' 41-21 win over Samford on Saturday.  Seniors Derrick Craine and Henrique Ribeiro both earned recognition from the league office announced today. Craine rushed for a career-high 222 yards on 23 carries with two touchdowns in the win. ... (click for more)