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'I've reached my capacity': Jackson County prepares for soft opening as frustration continues for many

Jackson County prepares for soft opening as frustration from residents continue
Posted at 7:48 AM, Apr 16, 2024

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — Jackson County residents feel frustrated as the Historic Truman Courthouse softly reopens after being closed for two weeks due to a cyberattack.

The closure, prompted by a ransomware attack that targeted the county's computer systems, left many residents unable to access essential services.

RELATED | Jackson County networks restored after ransomware attack

“It's a little crazy, a little frustrating getting up early to get here early and then to have it closed. Now I have to reschedule and do it probably next week," said Deborah Corbett, resident from Blue Springs.

The soft reopening of the courthouse includes the Assessment, Collection and Recorder of Deeds offices. For many residents, the two-week backup has been a loss of not only time but also money.

"I took today off. You know, it's hard for me to take off work, and I do not have anyone to come and stand in line four and five hours to wait," said Stacy Atkinson, resident from Raytown.

For men like Juan Carlos Espinosa, who has been waiting to register his car and pay his property taxes, he said the county should have done a better job with communicating with those who don't speak English.

“Sí, es frustrante todo esto, pero necesitan, no sé, hacer algo para comunicarle a la comunidad hispana, más que todo Porque pues uno no habla bien inglés a veces y viene hasta aquí uno y pierde uno el día," Espinosa said.

“Yes, all of this is frustrating, they need to do something to communicate better to the Hispanic community more than anything because, well, sometimes you don't speak English and then you come here, and you lose the day," Espinosa said.

The county announced Monday the three offices would be opening with the following procedures:

  • Assessment: By appointment only. Appointments disrupted by the network outage are being rescheduled as a priority. Walk-in services will be available starting Monday, April 22.
  • Collection: Residents are encouraged to utilize our secure online payment options available through the myJacksonCounty portal to avoid wait times.
  • Recorder of Deeds: Property records and marriage license applications are available online.

The county also announced the collection and assessment departments will offer new weekend hours from 8:00 a.m. until noon on Saturday, April 20, and every Saturday in May.
Tyler Franklin, who lives in Grandview, said the county needs to be better prepared.

“They've got a lot of improvement and a lot of work to do," he said.

While Jackson County works to resume normal operations, officials suggest residents use online services and avoid coming in person.

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