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Tax office to set up electronic numbering system

COVINGTON - In an effort to make customers' wait time a little more orderly, the Newton County Tax Commissioner's Office will soon implement an electronic numbering system.

Tax Commissioner Barbara Dingler said the office, which handles billing and collection of property taxes and registering and titling of motor vehicles, has experienced overcrowding since moving into the Newton County Administration Building several months ago.

Lines have regularly been stretching into the hallway, Dingler said.

"It seems like it's gotten busier since moving here. The lobby in the old building was bigger and did not have a hallway where overflow would go," Dingler said Thursday.

Dingler said initially the office had chairs for customers to sit while waiting, but that didn't work.

Each time a customer was called to the window, those remaining would have to move down a chair, she said.

"It was musical chairs. The citizens were laughing," she said. Plus, the system wasn't effective in keeping people from cutting in line, she said.

Part of the solution will include moving the chairs back in, but this time with a little more organization.

Beginning in mid-February, customers will come into the office, take a number from a manual ticket dispenser, have a seat and wait for their number to be called via an automated announcing system, Dingler said. Numbers will also be shown on an LED display.

The system, provided by Specific Touch Solutions out of Mableton, will cost $10,285, with the funds coming out of the tax commissioner's budget, Dingler said.

Crystal Tatum can be reached at crystal.tatum@newtoncitizen.com.