Solicitor’s office inquires temporary positions to assist with backlog of pandemic-affected cases

Published 1:00 pm Wednesday, December 15, 2021

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Like other entities in the county, the Troup County Solicitor’s Office has had issues filling positions, threatening its ability to handle its caseload. In light of this, the solicitor’s office is seeking two positions in an attempt to amend this matter.

The solicitor’s office asked the Troup County Board of Commissioners to approve a part-time, temporary paralegal position. This would assist in closing a backlog of cases pushed back due to pandemic-related staff shortages. The office additionally requested approval to apply for the Georgia County Internship Program grant for the Solicitor’s office’s Operation: Cleanup Campaign, the purpose of which will be to hire a college-level intern to assist the solicitor’s office with the backlog of cases. The intern position will pay $12 an hour for 200 hours through the course of summer 2022.

The position is geared towards college students. Court services originally applied for the GCIP grant in October to hire an intern to assist for Probate Court. Taylor said the intern position is needed to assist with a historical preservation project geared toward digitalizing marriage licenses. They are currently paper copies and kept in books.

The board granted approval for both inquiries at its regular meeting Tuesday night.

The solicitor’s office goal is to get 71 DUI cases off of backlog by Jan. 7, said Troup County Solicitor, Sandra Taylor.

“It’s not fair to anybody for the cases to stay pending,” Taylor said.

“We are starting to see repeat offenders who still have open cases.”

The solicitor’s office has been trying to fill an assistant solicitor’s position for two years, Taylor said. With that position empty, the solicitor’s office has been working to amend the backed-up cases and work with offenders.

“We’re hoping to move these cases more quickly to a resolution that will involve treatment and a dress the underlining cause of the crime,” Taylor said.

Taylor voiced concerns that the office may not be able to have the position filled for a while longer. She instead elected to move some of the funding from the solicitor’s position to hire the temporary assistant solicitor.

“It’ll stay in the budget and may even be budget-friendly,” Taylor said.