Sheriff explains why clerk’s position is important

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 12, 2003

Editor, the News-Herald:

First, let me say that as the elected Sheriff for the City of Suffolk I feel an obligation to the citizens of this city to make some comments on the Clerk of Circuit Court election this Nov. 4.

This is the first local political campaign in which I have publicly expressed my views. This is due to the fact that there are seven candidates in the race and the Clerk is a complex position that has a direct impact on the efficiency and effective operation of many other city departments and Constitutional offices. I work with the Clerk of the Circuit Court on a daily basis and I certainly hope that the citizens of this city will seek as much information as possible as to the qualifications of these candidates before casting their votes on Nov. 4, 2003.

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Bluntly stated, the Clerk of the Circuit Court is an elected office but one that requires the principal officer to be responsible for over 800 different legal requirements which are mandate by law. It is not an office that simply requires a supervisor or someone chasing the $95,000 salary hoping for chance to have on-the-job training. It is especially not for someone who doesn’t have their own personal or financial house in order. Please remember that once elected, the Clerk of Circuit Court will be your citizen representative to local government for the next eight years.

The Clerk of the Circuit Court generally has contact with almost every citizen at sometime during their lifetime due to the 800 different legal responsibilities of the office.

Some of these responsibilities deal with court records, properties, wills, marriages, divorces, estates, handguns, and many others too numerous to mention. In addition, the Clerk of Circuit Court collects more than $6 million annually in fees, which certainly has a serious impact on the operation of this city.

As a citizen I certainly want my next Clerk of Circuit Court to have the legal qualifications and necessary experience to effectively run a constitutional office. More importantly, the clerk should have the knowledge necessary to perform the legal responsibilities that are mandate by law. The clerk should also possess the technical and computerization skills that are necessary for the most effective operation of the office. This will have a direct impact on the office and the services it proves to the citizens.

I have taken the opportunity to review all the candidates and their qualifications. There is one candidate that I believe possesses all the qualifications necessary to be your next Clerk of Circuit Court. This candidate has also demonstrated an important characteristic that is vital to the success of running the clerk’s office or any other constitutional office and that is public service. This candidate has been endorsed by the former clerk, Mr. Henry C. Murden, Suffolk Police Officer’s Association, Suffolk Democratic Committee and many more to come.

On Nov. 4, 2003 I will be casting my vote for Mr. W. Randolph &uot;Randy&uot; Carter for Suffolk’s next Clerk of Circuit Court and I would encourage you to do the same.

Raleigh H. Isaacs Sr.


City of Suffolk