The Alachua County Tax Collector’s Office received the 2022 Governor’s Sterling Award for the first time.
The Florida Sterling Council, partnering with the Georgia Oglethorpe Award, announced that Alachua County Tax Collector John Power and his office met the criteria. The Tax Collector’s Office was the only organization in Florida to receive the award this year.
The Sterling Award is presented annually to organizations and businesses that meet or exceed the Sterling/Baldrige National Criteria for Performance Excellence – a framework for achieving and sustaining organizational performance excellence and efficiency.
The award’s assessment process is based on criteria from seven categories: leadership; strategic planning; customer focus; measurement analysis and knowledge management; workforce focus; operations; and results. The Sterling Council’s panel of judges consists of six nationally and internationally recognized experts on organizational performance excellence in the Sterling/Baldridge Management System.
“We are an organization focused on continual improvement with the goal of mastering all aspects of organizational efficiency. This award shows the citizens of Alachua County that our office is committed to excellence and is achieving great success,” Power said in a statement. “I respect and admire every member of our team and thank them for their dedication and hard work. Receiving this award from the Sterling Council is an honor for our team and the entire community.”
Over the last four years, the Tax Collector’s Office boasts ratings exceeding its comparative peer groups, according to the release. The department uses an innovative appointment system and over 80% of customers received service within 15 minutes, while 50% of those were within five minutes. Customer satisfaction was rated at an average of 98%, transaction accuracy achieved an average of 99.8%, and workforce satisfaction attained an average of 90%.
Consistently, costs have remained below budget, and external audits are clean and error-free, according to the release.
The Tax Collector’s Office acts as an agent for multiple local and state agencies, providing a wide range of services to the public. Total collections are approximately $390 million annually in taxes and fees, which are distributed among 25 taxing authorities. The Tax Collector also provides services for Motor Vehicle titles and registrations, driver licenses (including road tests), concealed weapons licenses, and birth certificates.