Paul Christenson Is Running For Ellis County Tax Assessor/Collector
ELLIS COUNTY – Paul Christenson, C.P.A., M.B.A is a name the Republican candidate for the upcoming primary election in March for Tax Assessor/Collector, wants everyone to remember.
The Chief Financial Officer and Performance Improvement Leader said he decided to run because, “There are some alarming news stories reported over the last year concerning the Ellis County Tax Assessor/Collector’s Office.”
Christenson cited a recent audit, which he said “resulted in allegations of theft, money laundering, misappropriation of funds, and revealed lax accounting, lack of training and defined processes, a lack of internal controls over money, a distinct lack of oversight and just really poor management.”
Tackling the Issues
He said he believes these problems have resulted in many of the taxing authorities in Ellis County not receiving all of the funds due the citizens. Which thereby adversely affects the ability of the ISDs, cities and towns, and Ellis County to hold taxes in line and provide all needed services to the people that they serve.
Christenson also added he believes he is more qualified than the current person sitting in that seat to get the Tax Assessor/Collector office back on track.
He is a Certified Public Accountant with a Master of Business Administration degree in Operations Management from the University of Chicago.
Key Functions of Tax Office
“One of the key functions of the tax office is billing and collections of property taxes, and another is motor vehicle registrations and titling,” he explained. “In my jobs I have lead many billing and collections offices to ensure that all monies properly due are collected in a customer friendly and efficient manner. I have used my operations and financial management skills to design and implement efficient processes combined with well-trained staff and highly functioning information systems to meet these objectives for my employers.
He also said, this is a great opportunity to use his 25 years of experiences helping governments and businesses to improve services, implement internal controls, and safeguard assets using information systems and documented processes combined with a well-trained workforce to ensure a high functioning tax office.
‘Not a Politician, A Businessman’
Christenson has never held an office in the past and said he is a “conservative Republican,” not a politician, but a businessman.
“My alliance is with the voters, not the political establishment,” he added.
Should he win the seat of Tax Assessor/Collector, Christenson said “We need an evaluation of the information systems and internal control practices of the Tax Office to identify and implement solutions to ensure that fraud and misappropriation of funds does not occur in the future.”
He also added “We need experienced leadership to design and implement solutions. I will lead these efforts. We should also evaluate the processes employed in the tax office to achieve better efficiency and focus on customer service.”
Emphasizing Customer Service
He reminded “The Ellis County Tax Assessor/Collector does not set tax rates. Property tax rates are established by locally elected officials, such as city councils and ISD boards. What the tax assessor/collector does is certify that the proper tax rates are used, billed to the property owners, collected, and then distributed to the various local governments. To me, the clear major issue at this time is gaining leadership in the Tax Office with the background and experiences along with the dedication to customer service necessary to ensure that there are no longer misappropriation of property tax collections.
The Republican candidate believes all of the people working in the Tax Office need support to make it work for everyone.
“We need a supportive structure for our people so that they are knowledgeable and confident in their positions. We also need the support of the County Commissioners Court to redirect budget dollars to where the money will have the most impact, such as investing in information systems,” he concluded.
Early voting starts February 14th! http://www.co.ellis.tx.us/629/Upcoming-Elections, official election day is March 1, 2022.
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