Doxpop - Tools for Attorneys and Public Information Researchers: January 2012

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Howard County, Indiana Joins Doxpop Fine Payment

The Howard County Clerk of Courts, Kim Wilson, is pleased to announce that traffic fines may now be easily paid online.

When ticketed drivers are ready to pay fines, they may go online to and quickly search for a traffic infraction by name or ticket number, then pay the fine using a debit or credit card. The total payment, including an online transaction fee, is calculated and displayed prior to the completion of the transaction. The fines are sent to the clerk immediately and the payer is notified via email when the payment is accepted, usually within 15 minutes.

This service, like all Doxpop services, is provided without any use of public funding or tax money. Use of Doxpop Fine Payment is available to anyone.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Update on progress toward a real-time interface to Odyssey courts

Many folks have been contacting us to learn whether we have a better update cycle for the Indiana courts using the Odyssey system yet. Here's some background and an update:

In November 2011, we announced that we had started receiving monthly data feeds for Indiana Counties using the Odyssey case management system. We released this information to our users with the caveat that the monthly update cycle makes this court information much less useful than the information we receive from the CSI and  Courtview systems with a ten minute update cycle. Still, good historical records have significant value, and our mission is to increase the value we provide to our users at every opportunity.

We also announced with great hope that the Indiana Supreme Court had ordered that a near-real-time messaging system be made available on January 1. This would allow Doxpop to transition quickly from the monthly update cycle to updating information for Odyssey courts in the same timely fashion that we've been updating information from other courts since 2002.

January 1st has passed, and although we've been provided with a set of interface specifications for what appears to be a workable system, the database behind this system contains only a small subset of the cases filed in Odyssey courts. What we're seeing is encouraging, and there's no doubt that the programmers working for the Supreme Court are making an effort to complete their work, but at this point, a production-quality data feed is not available.

So when will it be ready? The short answer is that we don't know. Doxpop has begun development of an interface based on the specifications and data that are available, but clearly we can't call ours done until the State completes their work. Watch this blog for updates, and we'll let you know right away when progress occurs!

In the meantime, we'll still be providing monthly updates for the Odyssey Courts during the first week of each month.