Denton County Clerk Cynthia Mitchell, in conjunction with county commissioners, approved a records preservation plan late last year that will allow the county to collect a $5 Records Archive Fee per document any time a real property record is recorded with the county clerk beginning January 1, 2012.
Money collected from the fees will go into a fund to be used to preserve the original books and records.
Most counties in Texas currently collect this fee with property recordings, officials said.
Denton County previously collected a records archive fee during a digitization project to preserve all county records on microfilm. This time, the county will be restoring and preserving the actual paper records and books that it has in its possession. Some of the records are over 135 years old and many are in desperate need of restoration.
While all of the records have been filmed and digitally scanned, the original paper records are often the best and truest version of the record that is available, so saving them before it is too late is paramount. The paper record’s life span is 350-500 years versus a much shorter life span of digital records.
Currently, the county is in the middle of the bidding process to select the company that will conduct the preservation. The preservation work is expected to begin early this year.
For more information regarding recording fees, contact the Denton County Clerk’s Office at 940-349-2010 with questions or visit http://dentoncounty.com/ccl.