Circuit Court clerk’s office to close to public for up to 10 hours a week

By BRAD GASKINS / Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA – Alabama Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb issued an administrative order July 25 calling for the state’s circuit court clerk’s offices to close to the public for up to 10 hours a week.

It’s up to the individual circuit court clerks to decide on what day or days, and at what hours, their offices will be closed.

Shelby County Circuit Court Clerk Mary Harris said today that she would likely decide by Friday.

“Am I happy about having to do this?” Harris said. “No, I’m not. I’ve got to be creative in ways that are going to allow the ladies in the office to have the most efficient use of their work time.”

The Shelby County clerk’s office since July 1 has been closed to the public for five hours a week, from noon to 1 p.m. each day. The new order requires up to 10 hours total, and not 10 hours in addition to the five hours already in place.

“Do we have some people on occasion come by on their lunch break to pay a traffic ticket, and they’re upset because we’re closed? Yes,” Harris said. “We’ve had that a few times, but for the most part people have understood.”