Hancock Co. to replace damaged computer system - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Hancock Co. to replace damaged computer system

The topic of discussion was purchasing a new computer system. (Photo source: WLOX) The topic of discussion was purchasing a new computer system. (Photo source: WLOX)
The Hancock County Board of Supervisors held a special meeting Tuesday. (Photo source: WLOX) The Hancock County Board of Supervisors held a special meeting Tuesday. (Photo source: WLOX)
The current system was damaged by lightning and needed replacing. (Photo source: WLOX) The current system was damaged by lightning and needed replacing. (Photo source: WLOX)
The board agreed to install a new computer system from Data Systems Management for around $43,000. (Photo source: WLOX) The board agreed to install a new computer system from Data Systems Management for around $43,000. (Photo source: WLOX)
HANCOCK COUNTY, MS (WLOX) -

The Hancock County Board of Supervisors held a special meeting Tuesday to discuss purchasing a new computer system.

The current system was damaged by lightning and needed replacing. The board agreed to install a new computer system from Data Systems Management for around $43,000.

As of now, services that require Hancock County's computer system cannot be performed.

That means no license plates, no marriage licenses and much more. It could be that way for weeks.

A storm blew through Hancock County during the first full weekend of November, knocking the power out at the Government Annex building.

"And it caused a power surge which has brought the whole system down," said Jimmie Ladner, tax assessor.

Ladner said the situation comes with good news and bad news. The good news is all data was backed up before the power went out, so no records are lost. On the other hand, the entire system now needs to be replaced.

In the meantime, no services can be performed.

"We can't sell car tags. We can't collect taxes. In the chancery clerk's office, they can't redeem prior year. In the circuit clerk's office, they can't sell marriage licenses," said Ladner.

The county also can't process purchase orders. Ladner said the need for some services may be more pressing than others.

For instance, you can get a marriage license in other counties and still get married in Hancock.

"Unfortunately, tags are different. You can only get your tag in the county your car is registered in," said Ladner.

According to Ladner, tags that expire in November are good through the end of the month. But, already expired tags won't be able to renew until the system is back up.

Ladner said that could affect around 3,000 people, which is the county's average number of tag customers per month.

Employees like Carolyn Jones are usually slammed with customers at different times throughout the day. That's a different case now.

"We are answering the phones and telling those who haven't heard the news that we are very sorry, but there's not much we can do to help them at this point," said Jones.

Jones said the majority of those who walk through these doors understand the county's situation.

Irvin Edwards is a part of that majority. "I don't have any problem with it. I can always come back," said Edwards.

The funding for the purchase of the new computer system will come from the county's general fund. It could take up to 12 days for the new system to be up and running.

Copyright 2015 WLOX. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly