Monday, June 21, 2011
Macomb, Oakland county clerks team up for one-stop shopping
By Chad Selweski
Macomb Daily Staff Writer
Republican Secretary of State Ruth Johnson and Democratic Macomb County Clerk Carmella Sabaugh have teamed up to provide a “one-stop shopping” program for those seeking to renew their driver license while also obtaining officials documents such as birth or death certificates.
Sabaugh will bring her mobile office to all seven Macomb County Secretary of State offices in July and August to offer numerous services to the public in a single stop.
Secretary of State branch offices provide driver licenses; license plates; registrations for vehicles, motorcycles and recreational vehicles; and other services. The County Clerk’s Office provides copies of birth and death certificates, marriage licenses, business registrations, concealed weapons permits, real estate documents and court records.
“We can assist with documents people need at the same time that they’re receiving services at the Secretary of State’s Office,” Sabaugh said. “With people working hard these days and with gas prices the way they are, this saves them time and money.”
Johnson gives credit to Sabaugh for the new collaboration, which the county clerk suggested during a discussion last month. The pilot project will begin July 13 in Romeo.
“We’re trying to do as many public sector and private sector partnerships as we can,” said Johnson, who was elected secretary of state in November. “We … will try this and, if it works, we’ll do it in more counties.”
Sabaugh launched her mobile unit several years ago, providing one-day services at various local libraries in order to save people a trip to her main office in downtown Mount Clemens. The “unit” that travels the county is essentially just two staffers, armed with computers and printer, who are able to provide documents on the spot.
Johnson, while serving as the Oakland County clerk, copied Sabaugh’s mobile unit concept. She said other counties could easily follow suit, even small rural counties with limited resources.
The Macomb County mobile unit will hold hours at Secretary of State offices on seven dates, in each case from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The schedule is:
- July 13 -- SOS Romeo office, 71130 Van Dyke, just north of the village.
- July 27 – North Macomb County “Plus” office, 51305 Gratiot, at 23 Mile Road, Chesterfield Township.
- Aug. 3 -- Southeast Macomb Plus office, 24040 Harper, St. Clair Shores.
- Aug. 10 -- Southwest Macomb Plus office, 28220 Dequindre, Warren.
- Aug. 16 – Clinton Township “Super Center,” 37015 Gratiot.
- Aug. 24 – Central Macomb Plus office, 50640 Schoenherr, Shelby Township.
- Aug 31 – Sterling Heights office, 34208 Van Dyke.
Prices for the documents provided by the Clerk’s Office typically range from $10 to $20.
The mobile office collaboration represents the third time Johnson and Sabaugh, the 2006 Democratic nominee for Secretary of State, have engaged in teamwork to influence state policies. Previously, when Johnson was the neighboring county clerk, she worked with Sabaugh to speed up the send-and-return process for absentee election ballots sent to troops serving overseas. The two clerks also successfully pushed for state legislation that, in Macomb and Oakland, simplifies homeowners’ ability to receive information about how much debt they owe to avoid foreclosure.
Johnson and Sabaugh said they view their bipartisan, pragmatic relationship as an example for other elected officials.
“This is about public service,” Sabaugh said. “Party labels go to the wayside when you’re talking about services to the public.”
For more information about the mobile unit service, log onto http://macombgov.org/Clerk-Services-MobileOffice or call (586) 469-5120.