Collaborative Tech: Advancing the Traffic Citation Process

  • Industry: County Clerk of State Court
  • Location: Glynn County, Georgia
  • Employees: 14
  • Population: 84,000
  • Tyler Client Since: 1994
  • Tyler Products Used: Enterprise Justice, Enforcement Mobile, Enterprise ERP, re:Search

Advancing the Traffic Citation Process

For the Glynn County Clerk of State Court’s office in Georgia, the manual process for managing a growing number of traffic citations was taking a toll on court staff and police officers. From the officer physically writing out the citation to court staff manually assigning a case number to deciphering an officer’s handwriting — navigating these tedious steps was taking two to four weeks before a constituent received the option for payment or appeal. Factor in a pandemic that limited in-person court operations, plus simultaneous population growth without corresponding staff increases, and the county found itself in dire need of a more efficient solution.

“The sheer volume of traffic citations that float through our court, the limited number of staff that I have, and then of course the changes with [COVID-19] have just made trying to find electronic solutions mandatory,” said Brenda Boone-Cove, Glynn County clerk of state court.

Taking a Collaborative Approach

The county recognized that the court, police, and IT staff would need to collaborate to find a solution that benefited all three departments and the public.

“The collaboration between public safety and the courts is vital,” Boone-Cove noted. Already a user of Tyler Technologies’ Enterprise Case Manager software solution — a fully integrated case management system between the Glynn County sheriff’s department, prosecutors, superior court clerks, and the state court — county leaders identified Tyler’s Electronic Citations as the right tool to further connect these departments to streamline citation processing.

With Electronic Citations, all citation information from an officer is captured virtually, in about half the time as a handwritten citation. “I really think the officers like it once they’re trained, because I think it cuts down on their distraction on the side of the road and officer safety is of utmost importance,” noted Boone-Cove. “They don’t have to be looking at a hand citation and looking at a license and writing that information down, trying to make sure they’re not transposing numbers.”

Accurate Data = Faster Processing

Because of its seamless integration with Enterprise Case Manager, once the electronic citation is filled out by an officer, it’s uploaded into the court’s queue within hours. A case number is automatically assigned, so when it reaches the court, clerks only need to review the citation to make sure the necessary information is there. Time spent on interpreting poorly handwritten tickets is eliminated, and data is more consistent. The county also reports more accurate data to the Department of Driver Services for Georgia. Overall, Glynn County reduced traffic citation processing time by approximately 60%, while also expediting access for citizens to their citation payment link — generally within 24 hours.

“Electronic Citations benefits our staff [because] there’s less people that have to actually touch traffic citations, there’s less data entry errors,” explained Boone-Cove. “The difference in the efficiency in our office, it helps everybody.”

Electronic Citations benefits our staff [because] there’s less people that have to actually touch traffic citations, there’s less data entry errors. The difference in the efficiency in our office, it helps everybody.

Brenda Boone-Cove

Glynn County Clerk of State Court

Cross-Departmental Engagement Inspires Growth

Boone-Cove went the extra mile to reach implementation goals, sitting in on handheld device training for officers and personally spoke to other courts that were already using Electronic Citations.

She also encouraged clerks, officers, and IT staff to attend each other’s training sessions to fully grasp how each step of the process worked within the new system. She recognized that leveraging new technology to improve the community would create a process that encouraged growth and engagement from public safety and courts, while benefiting constituents.

By strengthening the partnership between public safety and courts with Electronic Citations, the county improved efficiency and staff productivity for both departments, while increasing resolution options for constituents. Boone-Cove sees her county as an example for other jurisdictions in Georgia — embracing creative technology solutions to improve lives across the local community. The county will add the Defendant Access portal to its application suite later this year, giving defendants more tools for simplified citation resolution.

“I think anything that can make their life better on the street and safer, and also benefit the courts, while benefiting the citizens, making things streamlined, more efficient for all parties is what we should be all aiming to do,” concluded Boone-Cove.

Case Study Highlights

  • Reduced traffic citation processing time by approximately 60%
  • Strengthened the partnership between public safety and courts
  • Increased safety for police officers

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