The National Association of Counties (NACo) awarded Pinellas County Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller, Ken Burke, the 2016 Achievement Award for the “Same Day Juror Pay Mobile Workstations” initiative in the category of Court Administration and Management. Started in 1970, the annual Achievement Award Program is a non-competitive awards program that recognizes innovative, effective county government programs that enhance resident services in 21 different categories.
Clerk Burke spearheaded the “Same Day Juror Pay Mobile Workstations” initiative when it was apparent that a process improvement was needed. In the past, jurors eligible for compensation would be inconvenienced by the need to visit cashiering stations outside of the Jury Room to request their pay. If the jurors opted for a non-cash payment or if they failed to collect their compensation, the checks would be mailed between seven and ten days after their jury service. With nearly 28,300 citizens reporting for jury service each year, the cost of mailing juror payments was significant and the process was cumbersome and inefficient for all parties involved.
In an effort to add value to the customer service component of Jury Service, and apply some cost saving measures to the office, Clerk Burke worked to streamline the process and helped make Pinellas the first county in the state to offer same day juror pay in the comfort of the Jury Room through the use of mobile workstations. Since its official release date of September 23, 2013, the program has been very well received by the public. The substantial increase in same day juror payments alone has made this initiative a true success.
“Receiving this award is truly an honor and we couldn’t be more thrilled with how well the program has improved the Jury Service experience,” stated Clerk Burke. “This initiative ultimately offers jurors one less worry when taking part in such a fundamental component of our justice system.”
NACo unites America’s 3,069 county governments. Founded in 1935, NACo brings county officials together to advocate with a collective voice on national policy, exchange ideas and build new leadership skills, pursue transformational county solutions, enrich the public’s understanding of county government and exercise exemplary leadership in public service. To learn more, visit www.naco.org