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The Racine County Board of Supervisors is beginning the process of filling the county treasurer position, which was vacated following the July resignation of Jane Nikolai.

Filling a countywide elected position is a rare endeavor for the board. It is the Racine County voters who are, rightly so, entrusted to choose their county executive, sheriff, district attorney, clerk, register of deeds, clerk of circuit court and treasurer.

But with the treasurer’s position now empty, Wisconsin state statutes dictate that the County Board oversee the process to fill it. This is an obligation we take seriously.

The treasurer serves a vital role for Racine County taxpayers. Primary duties include overseeing the collection of taxes and utility billings, as well as day-to-day cash management and maintenance of the county’s financial records.

But the treasurer is also a leader within Racine County. The treasurer must work with residents, staff and local officials, and effectively respond to the public and county staff with a high degree of diplomacy and professionalism.

As County Board Chairman, I would like to articulate what I believe we should look for in the next Racine County treasurer.

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The treasurer should be a detail-oriented and civic-minded public servant; someone with strong business acumen and a demonstrated commitment to excellence and continuous improvement.

He or she should have a bachelor’s degree in finance or accounting or equivalent knowledge with years of experience. A master’s degree in accounting, finance or business is a plus.

The next treasurer should also possess sound judgment, good leadership skills, and the ability to adapt and learn new technology and establish solid working relationships with residents and community leaders.

Racine County voters will elect the next treasurer to a full four-year term during the November 2020 elections. While the position is officially partisan, the County Board has a unique opportunity to set aside politics and truly find the best qualified person to serve the remainder of Nikolai’s term.

Applications must be submitted to the Racine County Clerk’s Office by Monday, Sept. 9. I look forward to working with my fellow county supervisors to find the right manager of our hard-earned tax dollars.

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Rusty Clark is chairman of the Racine County Board.

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