BELTON — The Bell County Commissioners Court on Monday approved the implementation of a $2 electronic filing fee. The fee will go into effect Jan. 1 and was authorized by the Texas Legislature with the signing of House Bill 2302 on June 14.

Bell County Clerk Shelley Coston said the fee will be used to recover system operating costs that are reasonably incurred from the introduction of the state-mandated switch to electronic filing.

In the county clerk’s office, the new fee will affect probate and guardianship documents, as well as civil court proceedings — “anything filed in a county court at law,” Coston said.

County Judge Jon Burrows told the commissioners the funds generated by the fee can be used to purchase “computer terminals for the public in the clerks’ offices and the library.”

The state requires all Texas counties to start using e-filing by July 1, but Bell County wants to get ahead of the game, Coston said.

Other business

Ken Wallingford, a former Vietnam War prisoner of war and the veterans’ liaison with the Veterans Land Board, presented the commissioners with a certificate and a Texas flag that had been flown over the Capitol in recognition of the land, housing and home improvement loans issued to county veterans.

The court approved a $25,675 decrease in the contract between the county and Cody Stanley Construction for the renovations to the Expo Center.

The commissioners authorized the purchase of a police package Chevrolet Tahoe to replace the vehicle totaled by Deputy Adam Davis in a crash Dec. 1. Davis died of his injuries Wednesday.

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