What do Fillmore County voters want in two offices?
PRESTON — It is likely Fillmore County voters will decide in November whether to have the county auditor/treasurer and recorder continue to be elected or be decided by the county board.
The board on Tuesday voted 5-0 to have the county draft a resolution to put the measure on the ballot. For the measure to be on the ballot, it must have at least four of the five board votes.
Board Chairman Marc Prestby said it's a way "for people to decide … I think it's (a way to) see what the people say."
What to do with the two came up recently when Shirl Boelter, who had been auditor/treasurer for nine years, resigned for personal reasons effective May 31. The board on Tuesday decided to make Carrie Huffman, who had been on Boelter's staff but had moved to another department, come back to fill Boelter's job for the next 2 1/2 years. An auditor/treasurer is needed because that person has to sign key documents.
County Coordinator Bobbie Vickerman said the county is seeking approval to have the two positions appointed because both now take much more technical expertise than they did in decades past.
"Right now, anyone can apply to run the office," Vickerman said. "Technology has changed tremendously."
If the two offices are to be filled by the board, that would leave only the sheriff and county attorney as elected heads of departments, she said, adding that both of those offices can only be filled by someone who has the right credentials and schooling.
Trying to fill that position with someone from the outside would be hard now because that person wouldn't know if the job would be elected or appointed until this fall, she said. That's why the board chose to appoint an interim director.
With an interim director in place, it's a good time to look at different ways to configure the offices, "this would be the time to look at those possibilities," Vickerman said.
Commissioner Randy Dahl said he wants to see the internal chain of command changed so there is a central finance director, he said.
If there are changes, the public would scarcely notice because changes are internal ways to doing things and having checks and balances, Vickerman said.