Mary Orange

Mary Orange

Although Mary Orange wasn't officially in the position as Logan County Circuit Court Clerk until Monday, Jan. 7, she was in the office last week getting accustomed to serving the residents in her newest capacity.

A circuit court clerk plays a key role in the administration of justice. From maintaining official records to collecting fees, fines, and costs. The clerk performs a variety of duties prescribed by Kentucky's constitution, statutes, rules and administrative procedures that are integral to the Court of Justice operations.

Orange is both excited and ready to begin this new journey and is looking forward to working with the judicial system, staff, and public. Coming from the position of staff attorney under Circuit Judge Tyler Gill, Orange believes that "Any kind of legal background, of course, is going to help in this position."

No big changes can be expected right off the bat, according to Orange. However, changes will come eventually as she would like to see the office catch up and offer more to those this office serves.

"One of the biggest changes will come down from the state in mid-spring with a drivers license," said Orange. Logan County will be getting new equipment and a team will be coming down from Frankfort to help set up.

"There will be a different process than people are used to when choosing a license," said Orange. "Requirements will depend if you want a standard or a travel ID license. When implemented people will begin to have the option of an eight-year or four-year license."

During the campaign, Orange said if she were to be elected she wanted to offer a debit-credit option in the office as well as an e-pay option, which would allow payment of traffic tickets online. Both, she said, were implemented during the election.

Another change Orange wants to see is the opening of the clerk's office half a day on Saturday once a month. Hopefully, she said, this change will begin in the spring when she gets her feet under her first.

"I think it's important to be open at least one Saturday a month," said Orange. "If my numbers are correct, Logan County is the 6th largest county in land size and the 39th in population size. Right now there are about one-third of Kentucky counties that offer Saturday hours and 58 offer some sort of expended hours. Looking at Logan County's size and location between much larger cities, a lot of people work out of the county. If you take four hours a month times 12 you are looking minimal investment for a lot of benefit to the community."

Orange went on to add that people who work out of the county may have a hard time making it back to Logan during a work week to conduct business. This is why being open half a day on Saturdays would help so many.

"It won't require any extra man-hours as I said during the campaign, I intend to be the one in the office unless anyone wanted to volunteer," Orange said.

There will be no staffing changes at this time either, said the new clerk. There are currently 10 full-time employees in the circuit clerk's office and one part-time employee.

Orange is the daughter of Charles and Jo Orange. Charles served as the 7th Circuit Commonwealth Attorney before his passing in 2007. Jo is the longest-serving magistrate in the Fifth District in Logan County. She chose not to run for reelection when her daughter decided to run for Circuit Court Clerk. Orange is married to Stephen Hardison, owner-operator of Southern Air Solutions.