Longtime Madison County Circuit Clerk Jane Smith will retire March 31

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Longtime Madison County Circuit Clerk Jane Smith will retire March 31, according to a news release issued by her office.

Smith was elected clerk in 2000 and has served nearly 43 years in the Madison County court system.

“The taxpayers deserve hardworking, professional people to hold public office.  I have worked every day with the vision and goal to improve the Circuit Clerk’s Office of Madison County to better serve the citizens of this county,” Smith said. “I have been honored and humbled by the citizens of Madison County to have been elected to hold this office of public trust.”

Smith is widely credited with the modernization of the local court system, which is a model for the state. She has also led the way in helping secure additional funding to avoid layoffs that have affected court systems around the state and helping successfully push for a seventh circuit judge for Madison County.

Circuit clerks in Alabama are elected to six-year terms. Smith was reelected to a third term in March 2012, winning the Republican primary with more than 60 percent of the vote. She did not face a Democratic opponent in November 2012.

The news release said Smith’s successor will be appointed by the Madison County Circuit judges.

The press release describes some of Smith’s efforts in modernizing the clerk’s office.

“She has obtained funding that has provided the latest technology and equipment for our local courts; obtained funding for a new jail management and record system for the Sheriff’s Department and a case management system” for the District Attorney’s Office,” according to the release.

Smith established a multi-purpose room in the courthouse to accommodate jurors during their service that provides an internet café.

The news release also notes she has “improved the Magistrate Division by hiring attorneys to perform the warrant screening process and to assist in the issuance of search warrants.  She is the only Circuit Clerk’s Office in the state to provide in-house IT Support and Training for the courts and all court-personnel which help make our courts more efficient and minimizes down time when we have technology failures.”

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