Mon, Dec 9, 2019
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Willapa Harbor Herald • Town Crier
Traveler's Companion
(360) 942-3466 • PO Box 706, Raymond, WA 98577

Walker Announces Reelection Bid for Assessor

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It has been my privilege to have been the assessor for the past 11.5 years. I feel that by filing for election I am asking the voters of Pacific County to rehire me to continue the work I have done the three previous terms. During those terms the office has been under budget every year, moved the mailing date for revaluation notices from January to June, decreased staffing from nine full time employees in 2003 to 7.75 in 2014, and made available online through Mapsifter and Taxsifter, mapping and assessment records.

In 2003, the county was paying $250 per month to each of the four appraisers to use their personal cars to appraise. I eliminated one full time position and with the savings of around $60,000 salary and benefits bought two cars and one truck which we are still using (except for the one car the tree fell on in the 2007 storm). This has saved the county thousands of dollars. When the recession hit I didn’t fill a position, which had been budgeted for, telling the commissioners, “I think the people of Pacific County would rather have a deputy show up at midnight instead of an appraiser.”

I testified and helped get both the annual revaluation bill and timber combination bills passed. The annual revaluation included a grant which paid over $200,000 to help Pacific convert to the annual program which gives an updated assessed value yearly instead of once every four years. The funds for this grant came from existing real estate sales tax, the bulk of which were from King, Pierce, Snohomish and other large counties.

Since 2003, there have been permits issued for over approximately 1,100 houses, 500 mobile homes and 3,500 other structures, which we have added to the rolls and continue to track and appraise, all without increasing the staffing level. Our assessment level, which measures assessed value to sales price was at 99 percent last year, which has lowered the state levy rate charged to Pacific County property owners.

I am a 39-year resident of the county and am a former commercial fisherman, owner of a small business, employee of a small business (Pacific County Title), former hospital commissioner and now assessor. I have been both an employer and employee and have also been a property owner since 1977.

In short since being the assessor, the office has been under budget, on time, accurate and has put an emphasis on customer service. I am hoping that I will be rehired and continue to do a good job for you.

 

Thank you,

 

Bruce Walker

 

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