City to remove assessor's office

CLINTON — The city of Clinton will no longer house a city assessor’s office.

Without any applicants during this recent round of hiring, Clinton City Council members began the process Thursday of eliminating the office from the city’s code of ordinances.

For the repeal to become permanent, two more readings of the ordinance are required.

The issue has been a months-long debate, with it coming to a resolution with former Clinton City Assessor Brian Tiesman accepting the previously unfilled Clinton County Assessor position in the spring. There was no other option than to remove the office, At-Large City Councilman Cody Seeley said.

“The lack of applicants speaks for itself,” Seeley said.

“And we have someone willing and able to take it over.”

Tiesman will now oversee assessments of real property within the entire county, including the city of Clinton. With the finalization likely coming this month, the change will occur July 1.

The lone councilman opposed to the ordinance during a Thursday morning meeting, with Seth Odor and Sean Connell absent, was Paul Gassman.

Long-held by former City Assessor John Moreland, the position came under more scrutiny in November 2017 upon Moreland’s retirement. At that time, the city decided to proceed with the position and hired Tiesman.

However, due to changes in the examination and certification requirements for assessors and deputy assessors, the candidate list has dwindled.

Only seven cities in Iowa have city assessors. The remaining municipalities rely on the county assessor.

At a previous council meeting, city officials said the move would save $100,000.