Auditor’s site changes push fair, honest commercePublished 9:24am Friday, June 7, 2013
Most people know that a county auditor in Ohio is responsible for many duties of local government, such as property assessor and chief financial officer, but one role many people may not realize is how much the auditor’s office is involved with safeguarding fair and honest commerce throughout the county.
With the goals of making it easier to do business and making sure local consumers are protected in Lawrence County, I have recently added some new features to my website, www.lawrencecountyauditor.org.
These additions are focused on improving commerce in Lawrence County as well as helping consumers easily report potential discrepancies in the marketplace.
One of the most interesting parts of the job of county auditor is ensuring that weights and measuring devices used at the point of sale are accurate throughout the county. This is why you see that brightly colored sticker with my name on it on all of the gas pumps and deli scales in Lawrence County.
That sticker with my name on it is actually a seal. The auditor’s seal lets you know that the device has been tested and sealed annually by our certified inspector to deliver the product in the amount the device states.
The auditor’s seal ensures fairness and honesty for both consumers and businesses. This duty to ensure fairness and honesty reminds me of Proverbs 16:11 “Honest scales and balances are from the Lord…”
“Honest scales” is something I take very seriously as your county auditor. In order to help ensure accurate measurements in the marketplace, we have added a new function to the website that enables consumers to report any problems or questions with a commercial measurement device directly to the auditor’s office online.
This new function will help us better track complaints, and make sure the weights and measures process in Lawrence County is more efficient and transparent, ensuring consumers and businesses are both receiving a fair deal.
In addition, when a new business starts up or an existing business expands, various permits and licenses are always needed. Sometimes obtaining the proper permits or licenses can be a difficult task for a business owner to simply find out what form to use or where to go to get things done.
There is now a link on our website for businesses to be able to inquire about Vendor’s Licenses and what is needed in order to go into business. There is also a link to the Soil and Water District, which administers commercial building permits and floodplain permits in Lawrence County, to help businesses know where to go to get the permits they need to comply with construction and expansion requirements.
Hopefully, these additional enhancements will make it easier for businesses to obtain permitting information more efficiently and will also make sure local consumers are treated fairly in Lawrence County.
Jason C. Stephens is a Getaway resident and former county commissioner serving his first term as Lawrence County Auditor. He can be reached at (740) 533-4310 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.