Mugrage develops digital plans for clerk of court

By Lorna Hart - [email protected]

Samantha Mugrage

Samantha Mugrage

POMEROY — Samantha (Sammi) Mugrage is running as a Republican candidate for the Clerk of Courts position in the March 15 primary.

Mugrage has been working as a court reporter in the Meigs County Common Pleas Court for more than 17 years and said her experience in working alongside the clerk of courts office every day has made her familiar with many aspects of the job.

“Through my years of court experience, I know the court’s requirements and the public’s expectations for the clerk of courts,” she said. “I feel I possess these qualities, and I will meet and exceed these expectations. I firmly believe I am the right person for the right reason.”

The clerk of courts is responsible for collecting all revenue relating to court costs, bonds, fines and forfeitures and disbursing other monies which are directed to various accounts of the county and state. The clerk processes Notary Public applications and serves as a passport agent for the federal government. The clerk also processes titled vehicles through the Title Division.

“The clerk is described as the ‘keeper of the records’ for both the common pleas court and the court of appeals,” Mugrage said. “Basically, this means the clerk records all the paperwork filed through the courts and keeps the records for civil, domestic and felony criminal cases.”

Mugrage said she believes the clerk’s office exists to provide a public service, and there are changes and upgrades she would like to make, including a one-stop service for the BMV and the title office, the ability to have passport photos taken on-site when making the application at the clerk of courts office and a redesign of certain parts of the legal office to make it more inviting and usable to the public.

“At this time, many of Ohio’s counties already provide these services and are making their offices more user-friendly,” she said. “I am working to find out what can be done to accomplish this in Meigs County.”

Mugrage shared that she would like to upgrade the current clerk of court’s website to include useful information such as legal and title forms, links to other county offices, local rules of court and ePay information.

“Electronic filing is right around the corner for our county and an up-to-date website is vital.”

Making records and services of the clerk’s office more readily available to the public by software and hardware upgrades to Courtview, the case management system used by the clerk of courts and common pleas court, would be on Mugrage’s agenda.

“By updating the server and software, printers, PCs, monitors, scanners and a document imaging system by using a technology grant available through the Supreme Court of Ohio, upgrades, which will benefit both the Clerk’s Office and the Common Pleas Court, could be made,” she said.

Mugrage also suggested using a resource currently available called the Ohio Courts Network. This system or network would make available court case information, inmate and supervision information, criminal history information and driver’s license and vehicle registration information to the courts, probation departments and law enforcement agencies.

Raised in Syracuse, Mugrage now lives outside of Chester with her husband and two daughters. She currently serves as student achievement liaison for the Eastern Local School Board, project director of Angela Eason Memorial Park and is a member of the Syracuse Community Center.

“My family’s roots run deep in Meigs County as we are all lifelong residents,” she said. “My husband and I were raised here, and this is where we want to raise our daughters in the hopes that one day, they too can raise their families here. I am devoted to helping and serving others and being involved in preserving a future for our county and its residents.”

Mugrage is challenging Republican incumbent Diane Lynch for the position of Meigs County Clerk of Courts in the March 15 primary.

Contact Lorna Hart at 740-992-2155 Ext. 2551

Samantha Mugrage Mugrage

By Lorna Hart

[email protected]