Positively Osceola asked a number of positive leaders in the community to share their hope and plans for the new year, and how we can encourage and support each other in 2023. We asked Osceola Clerk of the Circuit Court & County Comptroller, Kelvin Soto, to share his hope and outlook for 2023.
As we say goodbye to 2022, I am excited about the new ways in which our office is endeavoring to best serve our community.
Over the past year, we have revolutionized the way we serve our constituents in all facets of our operations. We had a lot of work to do, but it’s safe to say that we’re excited about what we accomplished and what’s in store for 2023.
When I first took office, my goal was to better professionalize our staff and to adopt best-in-class performance measures, training, and recruitment. To that end, we implemented organizational practices seen only at the state and federal levels, ensuring quality candidates are onboarded and trained on best practices and operational standards to ensure a high level of customer care.
As part of this commitment to excellence, we acquired top notch leadership, adding a chief strategy officer with nearly 30 years of Walt Disney Company experience and a training and development manager dedicated to cutting edge models and methods. Alongside them, we brought on other dedicated leaders who have decades of experience with the state’s clerks and the court system. Simply put, we sought after the best to transform your Clerk & Comptroller’s Office into one that works for you with your needs at the forefront.
This past year, we were excited to add photos to the passport application services we already provided. As the only U.S. Department of State Passport Acceptance Facility in Osceola County, we are proud to be your one-stop shop for your international travel needs. No longer do you need to obtain photos from the corner drugstore or schedule your own photographer ahead of your appointment. For only $12, we will take your photo with quality equipment and ensure it complies with State Department requirements. Our best-in-class public servants have been trained on photographing infants, toddlers, and those with special needs, increasing access for those wishing to travel abroad. We are committed to taking as many photos as it takes so that you’re proud to display your passport on your travels!
Additionally, our office has fully assumed the role as the County Comptroller under article 10 of the Florida Constitution after a voter-passed referendum returned these duties to my office. This allows for a single elected official—answerable directly to the voters—to exercise greater oversight over the county’s expenditures and to audit and invest the public’s funds on their behalf. With this fully transitioned role, one of the highlights of our year was publishing Osceola On The Rise, our inaugural Popular Annual Financial Report (PAFR) on behalf of the county. We’re proud of the work that went into this publication and hope you’ll pick up a copy at the courthouse, at an event near you, or view the online version on our website!
We’ve also changed how we work to best serve you:
We created a new phone contact center to reduce wait times and to provide dedicated services to our telephone customers.
We’re implementing an automated docketing product to have increased efficiency in updating cases and reducing human errors through manual review.
- We reduced the need for return visits when filing petitions for injunction by 85% using secure technology.
- We hosted our first themed holiday wedding with more on the horizon.
- We attended dozens of community events for the ability to interact with and introduce ourselves to you.
- We implemented new software for the Value Adjustment Board.
- Using technology, we reduced our use of paper in our Probate division by 80%.
- Along with the state’s other 66 clerks began implementing a new statewide case reporting system for more efficient and accurate data reporting for the Florida courts system.
We’ve been busy—but we see the value in the work we are doing to best serve you.
Our goals for 2022 may have been ambitious, but those for 2023 are even more so. It is my honor and pleasure to serve as your Clerk of the Circuit Court & County Comptroller and to welcome you to your courthouse. We’re looking forward to doing even more incredible things for you this year!