Court records issue for circuit clerk
By Matt Brennan For The Beacon-News October 8, 2012 11:26AM
Thomas Hartwell and Ed Nendick
Family: 2 sons
Previous elected office:
Kane County Board, 1996-2000
Family: Married, 3 children, 6 grandchildren
Occupation: Vice president of sales and administration for O’Connor and Nendick
Previous elected office: None
Updated: October 8, 2012 9:04PM
With the election looming in November, a case management system that could potentially cost the county up to $12 million is dominating the conversation of the candidates for Kane County circuit clerk.
Both the Republican candidate Tom Hartwell of Elgin and Democrat candidate Ed Nendick of Aurora agree on the necessity of an improved case management system to keep track of court records. Hartwell is encouraging the county to conduct an audit to see what is necessary in a system, while Nendick wants to utilize a unique system that DuPage County built.
“We are broke,” Nendick said. “We have to get together to cooperate.”
If elected, Nendick said he would approach DuPage County about utilizing the case management system that their staff computer programmers built to fill their needs.
One advantage to utilizing a neighboring county’s system is that the laws, and specifications for the system, would be the same for Kane County. This would save the county the expense of having to go out and seek a system from private companies, Nendick said.
Hartwell said he wants to take a measured approach to the issue. He wants to seek proposals from outside companies that would help the county establish the foundation for which system best fits the court’s needs. The companies that respond could go a long way in pointing the county to the right course of action, Hartwell said.
“Lets let them do all the work for us,” he said.
Both candidates have business backgrounds that they feel will help streamline the office. Hartwell is a lawyer of 20-plus years who also has a master’s degree in business. Nendick has supervised unionized employees in businesses of about 100 workers, much like the circuit clerk’s office, he said.
As a lawyer who takes collections and bankruptcy cases, Hartwell said he is familiar with the workings of the office. He would want to emphasize customer service, he said.
“We’ve all got a common purpose, and that’s to provide the best service with the dollars allocated,” he said.