Rearranging Curry County offices won’t save money

Written by By Patty Ingersoll, former Curry County treasurer, Cathlamet, Wash. April 30, 2011 04:00 am

Rearranging the furniture on the Titanic did not change the outcome of the Titanic. The same with rearranging the employment of the county offices will not save Curry County any money.

I was the Curry County treasurer from December 1998 through June 30, 2003. Prior to that, I worked in the Curry County Assessor’s office for 29 years. Since my retirement, I have kept up with the news and events in Curry County as I had lived there for 50 years. I came from a Curry County pioneer family and have family members still living there.

I called the Curry County Commissioners’ office April 13, and left a message for David Itzen to call me regarding moving the tax department to the assessor’s office. He did not return my telephone call. The reason for my call was to discuss this transfer of moving the tax department to the assessor’s office as I do not feel this is cost effective or saving the county any money. The treasurer submitted her budget to the budget committee and was turned down for her proposal. Their minds were made up prior and they were not going to change it. The treasurer is left with only .25 percent of one employee. You cannot hire someone at .25 percent of the time. This leaves her with no help at all. From my knowledge of the treasurer’s office, it has never been without a full-time deputy treasurer. What do you do with illness, vacation, meetings, etc.? You are leaving the office unattended. Is this what is best for Curry County?

It seems to me that some people are questioning Izzy Brock’s capabilities. For the record, prior to coming to Curry County, she was employed by the Department of Defense as a personal secretary to a colonel, having passed all FBI security clearance. Izzy goes through an annual audit with a CPA firm. This reflects her integrity and the interests of the citizens of Curry County. If you want to see the qualifications for county treasurer, look it up in the ORS statutes.

Commissioner Waddle, concerned about Treasurer Izzy Brock’s department, called for a special audit which proved that her office was accurate and nothing amiss was found.

Have all the other departments cut their employees or is it just the treasurer’s office that is taking the big hit?

This seems like more of the “Good Old Boy” politics. One person does something wrong and then goes after the wronged party to show who has the most power. This should not be. With the economy as it is, we should all be working together for the best interest of the citizens.

The revolving door between the clerk/assessor needs to be locked and everyone come through the front door. When I ran for Curry County treasurer for the 1998 election, I went to the assessor to tell him that I had filed, and the clerk was in the office trying to get his attention and on the phone wanting to tell him before I could. This is only the surface of the iceberg.

If you are going to pick on one department, pick on them all. Let everyone have only .25 FTE deputies and see how they are able to function as a department.