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Hoffman, Zelkowski Square Off for Ohio County Assessor

October 21, 2012
The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

Independent candidate Sharon Zelkowski faces incumbent Democrat Kathie Hoffman for the position of Ohio County assessor.

Hoffman is finishing her first term in office.

- Zelkowski said she will bring a "new level of energy to the assessor's office, with fresh, new ideas and a positive approach to good service."

"I have the understanding, patience, and empathy that the residents of Ohio County deserve," she said. "I will introduce a team approach by cross training the staff in order to improve efficiency during an absence of another staff member. I would create a policy and procedures manual for every position so the staff understands what is expected of them and how to deal with issues when they arise."

Zelkowski said she believes residents "want an assessor who understands that they come first. I know what it means to be a public servant and will see that my staff serves their needs first," she said.

Zelkowski said she will use her education in management to improve the office. "I understand that people are our greatest resource and have worked well with a seasoned staff in reappraising, mapping and also with the general public. I held a position with the Ohio County Assessor's office as a transfer and sales validity deputy for the past three years. ... I have experience in all aspects of office management and an understanding of the inner workings that are necessary" to be assessor.

- Hoffman said she will continue her promise to be a full-time, working assessor.

"I have an open-door policy. ... The oil and gas industry has brought many challenges to the county, but I am up to these challenges and will continue to explore ways in which to help the taxpayers," she said.

"I want to continue the work that I have started. I have been and will continue to be your "hands-on-assessor."

She believes her 20-plus years in tax assessments and collections make her the right choice for voters on Nov. 6.

Hoffman noted her office recently unveiled a new website "that is quick and easy to use."

Hoffman is a member of the West Virginia Association of Assessors and serves on the legislative committee and also serves on the Oil & Gas committee. She was named the 2012 West Virginia Assessor of the Year by West Virginia State Tax Commissioner Craig Griffith. The award is given annually to the assessor who has shown compliance to the West Virginia Property Tax Division standards.

"I am very proud of this award, as it was last given to an Ohio County assessor in 1983," she said.

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