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Dauphin County in search of $81 million - abc27 WHTM

Dauphin County in search of $81 million

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

Dauphin County is in search of $81 million in unpaid court costs, fines and restitution. One man is in charge of getting people to pay up.

Because the amount of money owed is so outrageous, Dauphin County Adult Probation and Parole assigned Brandon Bellinger to do nothing but track down the debtors and get them to pay.

Over the last four months, Bellinger has gotten back more than $80,000. But there is still more than $80 million to go.

"Try and find addresses, send the letters out, then deal with the phone call coming in to answer questions as well as set up payment agreements, then monitor those payment agreements to see who's paying and who's not," said Bellinger.

That is what he has to do to try and get people with outstanding court costs, fines and restitution to pay up.

In all, debtors owe $26 million to the state and $29 million to Dauphin County.

"Which supports court operations, staff and salaries that comes into helping taxpayers with savings," said Chad Libby, Director Of Adult Probation and Parole for Dauphin County.

Libby said it is not just about getting the state's and the county's money back. Libby is most worried about the $26 million in restitution that is owed to victims.

"You know, it's owed to the victims, especially a victim that can't afford to replace their losses. So that was objective number one," said Libby.

It may sound like an impossible task, but Bellinger is not intimidated.

"It is persistence, it's patience," Bellinger said. "You have a bunch of names on the list and you go through them and one by one you check them off and you do what you can each day."

Bellinger is helped by an assistant and another employee will soon work with him. Officials predict that they can collect $300,000 by the end of this year.

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