Register of Deeds race is a question of user friendliness

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Abraham Mahshie – Contributing Writer

Having trouble requesting your birth certificate online? Now’s your chance to make your vote count.

For the past 12 years, Democrat Todd Raby has held the job, fending off just one opponent in that time. This election year, he has a new challenger, Republican Linda Light Herman.

The Register of Deeds is responsible for managing Macon County’s vital records, including real estate, birth, death and marriage documents.

One of the reasons Herman is running: She cannot easily access documents online. 

“Our last software ‘up-grade’ seems to have made it more difficult for me to access information,” she said in a written response.  “I am looking forward to sitting down with our software providers and doing an in-depth study of our systems, including a specific study of and an expansion of our indexing systems.”

Raby thought the same when he was first elected in 2006. That’s why he held a request for proposals and upgraded Macon County’s software with lowest bidder, Business Information Systems (BIS).

“I feel you can either get a Pinto or a Cadillac and when you invest in a Cadillac you get what you pay for,” he wrote in a written response. “[BIS’s] quality and customer service is impeccable.”

He also launched the county’s website so that constituents can look up their documents online and save trips to the Register of Deeds office.

“It truly takes years to acquire this knowledge and fully understand the importance of the office,” Raby said of his office’s collective 35 years’ experience, counting that of his three staff members.

Still, Herman believes there is room for a few “fresh ideas” in records management.

“My qualifications are a perfect match,” she said. Herman boasts a Bachelor of Science in office management from the Florida State University School of Business, and her entrepreneurship and small business acumen. “In Atlanta, I took my business from two employees to 26 employees utilizing 10,000 square feet of office space and sold that business for a profit.”

Herman said she then started a publishing company that reached “national recognition,” thanks to her people and management skills, and experience in administration, management and public relations.

“I have the energy and desire to come in and improve our systems,” she said.

Raby said he wants to “continue to bring whatever technology that is feasible and necessary” to upgrade the county’s hardware or software, within budget. Three years ago, Raby began e-recording for digitally creating, submitting, and recording legally binding land ownership records.

Now that he’s gone forward, he wants to go back and index on the county’s website records prior to 1986. He also believes in the mission of preserving Macon County’s history, by maintaining books and records dating back to 1829.

Nonetheless, Herman believes now is not the time for complacency. 

“We are living in this technology age and must be active and innovative in order to best serve our community.”

Abraham Mahshie – Contributing Writer

Having trouble requesting your birth certificate online? Now’s your chance to make your vote count.

For the past 12 years, Democrat Todd Raby has held the job, fending off just one opponent in that time. This election year, he has a new challenger, Republican Linda Light Herman.

The Register of Deeds is responsible for managing Macon County’s vital records, including real estate, birth, death and marriage documents.

One of the reasons Herman is running: She cannot easily access documents online. 

“Our last software ‘up-grade’ seems to have made it more difficult for me to access information,” she said in a written response.  “I am looking forward to sitting down with our software providers and doing an in-depth study of our systems, including a specific study of and an expansion of our indexing systems.”

Raby thought the same when he was first elected in 2006. That’s why he held a request for proposals and upgraded Macon County’s software with lowest bidder, Business Information Systems (BIS).

“I feel you can either get a Pinto or a Cadillac and when you invest in a Cadillac you get what you pay for,” he wrote in a written response. “[BIS’s] quality and customer service is impeccable.”

He also launched the county’s website so that constituents can look up their documents online and save trips to the Register of Deeds office.

“It truly takes years to acquire this knowledge and fully understand the importance of the office,” Raby said of his office’s collective 35 years’ experience, counting that of his three staff members.

Still, Herman believes there is room for a few “fresh ideas” in records management.

“My qualifications are a perfect match,” she said. Herman boasts a Bachelor of Science in office management from the Florida State University School of Business, and her entrepreneurship and small business acumen. “In Atlanta, I took my business from two employees to 26 employees utilizing 10,000 square feet of office space and sold that business for a profit.”

Herman said she then started a publishing company that reached “national recognition,” thanks to her people and management skills, and experience in administration, management and public relations.

“I have the energy and desire to come in and improve our systems,” she said.

Raby said he wants to “continue to bring whatever technology that is feasible and necessary” to upgrade the county’s hardware or software, within budget. Three years ago, Raby began e-recording for digitally creating, submitting, and recording legally binding land ownership records.

Now that he’s gone forward, he wants to go back and index on the county’s website records prior to 1986. He also believes in the mission of preserving Macon County’s history, by maintaining books and records dating back to 1829.

Nonetheless, Herman believes now is not the time for complacency. 

“We are living in this technology age and must be active and innovative in order to best serve our community.”

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