The Voice • February 2017
The Saline County Clerk’s office in Harrisburg, IL is under pressure from the county board. The board asserts that County Clerk Kim Buchanan should disperse the large amount of funds accumulated by her office into a general county fund. Buchanan argues that the county board has attempted to act unlawfully by going over her power to control the office’s technology fund. Buchanan states that the funds are intended to be used for developing and maintaining land recording technology for the Clerk’s Office.
In December of 2016, the county board took a vote and it was decided that litigated action was necessary against Buchanan for her “failure to comply.”  The county board feels funds available to the clerk is unnecessarily high and wishes to allocate it to departments where funds are lacking. Buchanan maintained her stance and reiterated how state law specifically prohibits the use of funds for anything besides maintaining the Clerk’s Office.
To build her case, she consulted with other longtime county clerks over the issue and the consensus was that her stance is valid. Copies of correspondence concerning the issue were submitted as evidence in the case. Also used in the argument was a standing legal opinion written by former Illinois Attorney General Neil Hartigan which stated “a county board is legally barred from telling a county clerk how money controlled by that office may be used.”