GATESVILLE — Coryell County commissioners voted Monday to increase the county clerk’s record archive filing fee from $5 to $10 to help pay to preserve county documents.
Under a new state law, counties were given the option of raising the fee to generate money to preserve records filed with county and district clerks.
County Clerk Barbara Simpson said she had resisted increasing the fee, but found that because many Texas counties have switched to the higher fee, mortgage companies routinely pay the $10 fee when filing land records.
“Most records already have the fee increase,” Simpson said. “We have to either send the record back or send a $5 refund check, which is not cost effective for the office.”
The fee increase will expire in 2019, she said, and the added revenue collected will help the county meet its responsibility of ensuring old records are legible and accessible to the public.
“These records tell the history of the county,” she said.
In addition to land records, the fee applies to documents recording births, deaths and brands as well as county court-at-law records, Simpson said.
Earlier this year, the commissioners’ court approved a request from 52nd District Court Clerk Janice Gray to raise the fee for records filed in her office.