Despite COVID-19, 2020 was a busy year for people to buy and sell property, get married, and transfer and license automobiles among many other things that the Whitley County Clerk’s Office oversees.
As a result of all these transactions, Whitley County Clerk Carolyn Willis recently turned over a record amount of excess fees to the Whitley County Fiscal Court.
During the March 16 monthly meeting, Willis turned over $238,327.73 in 2020 excess fees to the fiscal court. Excess fees represent money that the clerk has collected above the amount that was budgeted for a given year.
By comparison, the county clerk’s office turned over about $40,500 in excess fees in 2019 and about $42,684 in excess fees in 2018.
“We remained opened more than most clerks through the pandemic. We only closed the month of April due to the governor’s order, but still remained working by Dropbox, phone transactions and mail,” Willis said.
“We were blessed to receive much more auto dealer work by working with the dealers in any way possible. I have such a wonderful staff that worked so willingly with me in such a stressful time, and I feel our county was truly blessed.”
Willis noted that she thinks federal stimulus money also played a factor in the increased excess fees, as did a state mandated increase in various recording fees that went into effect in 2019.