Two vie for Tax Assessor job
Article Author: By Emily Dilbeck
Continuing our coverage of the upcoming August 2nd elections, this week the Polk County News talked with the candidates for Assessor of Property.
Continuing our coverage of the upcoming August 2nd elections, this week the Polk County News talked with the candidates for Assessor of Property. Both candidates were asked to discuss their experience related to the job, how they would change the job, and the importance of the Assessor of Property’s office to the county. The Property Assessor’s job is to determine property value, but taxes are set by the County Commission.
Randy Yates, 54, incumbent Democratic candidate, graduate of PCHS, member of the International Association of Assessing Officers, elected as Assessor in 1996, served on the School Board, as worked for 19 years in construction, and several years for an international building plant.
Yates says he is concerned about the state of the County, and wants to ensure the public is served properly. Since this year is a reappraisal where all properties in the County will be reassessed, he feels it is important that an experienced candidate be given this task. His goal is to make sure every citizen is on the tax roll in their proper place, and says he works every year to learn more about how property is best assessed. Recently, he attended several conferences regarding how to assess properties with solar panels and green energy devices and says he wants to keep himself updated in the ever-changing world of property assessment.
Due to the clerical work and state-mandated reports, Yates says he feels he is experienced in getting paperwork done in a timely manner and making sure everything is done to code. He is also trained in the new GSI-mapping program, which he received last year and is using to help him assess remote properties by satellite.
He hopes to continue as Assessor of Property and says he does his best to make sure he does right by the citizens of Polk County.
Bill Bracken, 62, Republican candidate, Undergraduate degree from Rutgers and MBA in Finance from Drexel, 40 years experience in Accounting and Banking.
Bracken says he is running for office because he believes a decline in real estate values will affect the current reappraisal. While working in banking, Bracken says he determined the credit worthiness of individuals using wildly different elements to create mathematical data, which he believes is similar to that of the Assessor of Property’s job. He says he wants to be objective, not subjective as Assessor of Property.
Bracken says he believes he can either reduce the cost of running the office or run it better with the same cost.
Bracken says the he feels the job of the Assessor of Property is to determine property value fairly in both the high and low categories.
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