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Davidson Co. clerk shows changes since Arriola stepped down

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

After a scandal over marriage fees and spending forced former Davidson County Clerk John Arriola to step down, new Clerk Brenda Wynn promised to turn things around.

Channel 4 News spoke with Wynn on Thursday about the big changes she's made after six months in office.

Wynn said with hundreds of people coming through the clerk's office every day, getting people in and out - and not having them wait in long lines - is important.

Now, if you step into the county clerk's office to get a tag, title or to get married, you may notice a few changes. To start, the clerk herself may be the one helping you.

"Again, when they come in and things back up, I want to be out there to help clear these lines up," she said.

Wynn acknowledges lots of eyes have been on her office after Arriola left amid scandal and facing criminal charges.

Wynn said her top goal has been to make things more transparent and efficient, so she's hired staff, let a few go and moved some others from back offices to put them up front to help customers.

Also, Wynn is requiring all workers be cross-trained on almost every job.

"So, when it comes to doing renewals, everybody in this office can do renewals. I do renewals," Wynn said.

Wynn has also limited who can use county credit cards. That move comes after a city audit found under Arriola's leadership workers purchased items above the limit with no receipts to back them up.

Plus, when it comes to that controversial $40 wedding fee Arriola pocketed from couples, Wynn - who performs marriages each day - said the only thing she'll accept are hugs.

"A lady asked me if she could give me a tip, and I said, 'Absolutely not. Take that money and go buy yourself and your husband lunch and celebrate,'" Wynn said.

Another way Wynn said she's making the office more customer-friendly is that her staff are not allowed to have their personal cell phones out while working up front.

Copyright 2013 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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