County’s Revenue Department begins move

Sep. 01, 2013 @ 05:48 AM

Beginning this week, the county Revenue Department will be located in a new place.

To accommodate for construction improvements to their regular location inside the Rutherford County Courthouse, the Revenue Department will be transferred to the Rutherford County Annex through October.

“This is the last week where people can get discounts and we wanted to get past that,” said Carl Classen, Rutherford County manager. “This should be during the two quietest months of the year for the Revenue Department.”

The renovations were spurred by a report from the North Carolina County Commissioners Association (NCCCA) which suggested the department needed a “customer-friendly” design to the offices.

Rutherford County Commissioners approved spending $600,000 for design and construction — which includes electronics and wiring. Classen said the current estimated cost of the construction is $265,953.

“The renovations came in substantially under budget, so that was good news,” Classen said.

The department will begin moving Tuesday and will remain open during the move. Classen said Sept. 9 will be the official opening date for the department inside the Annex.

“Right now, we have been cleaning out old documents,” Classen said. “It’s just like when anyone moves, you do an awful lot of cleaning.

“We’ve been preparing for the new software system and spending time on data conversion issues.”

The county has purchased new software and hardware for the department and Classen said it will take up to a year to migrate older data and complete the installation in the courthouse.

“We’ve just started the physical data migration and that will take between 4-6 months,” Classen said. “We will also have system integration.”

The new equipment will allow the Revenue Department to communicate with other county offices and most of the data stored in the department’s new equipment will be accessible by other departments within the county.

“We hope to make a lot of that data available online for the general public,” Classen said. “What can’t be done that way, can be requested though an open records request.”

As a result of the move, the County Commission meetings for September and October have been moved to Ellenboro Volunteer Fire Department (September) and Lake Lure (October). Additionally, the September and October meetings of the Planning Commission will be moved to the conference room of The Foundation on the campus of Isothermal Community College.

“These kinds of things don’t happen overnight,” Classen said. “They take a lot of work by people with an awful lot of knowledge.”