County Assessor Candidate Questionnaire: Claytor

Name: Cynthia L. Claytor

Age: 53

Telephone: 970/564-1153

Email: cclaytor@co.montezuma.co.us

Website: Not listed

1. List three action items you’d introduce to guarantee the people’s right to know.

To my knowledge the assessor’s office has never turned down an invitation to speak with journalists for the public’s right to know. Assessor records that are public information according to state law are available in our office, and on our public website available 24/7. The duty of the assessor’s office is to fairly assess all taxable property and distribute the property tax burden as equally as is possible. My door is always open to anyone that has questions, comments, or would like to have a better understanding of the property tax process.

2. If elected, what would be your top priorities as assessor?

The top priority of the assessor should be to lead by example with professionalism and integrity. Any elected official should be worthy of the public trust. I have a very high set of standards and hold myself accountable for every decision that I make.

3. List the office’s top three needs, and what steps would you take to address those concerns?

The current software system utilized in the office is drastically out dated and under supported. This has lead to reduced productivity, inter-departmental miscommunication, and personnel frustrations. If elected, the biggest priority would be to update our software in a well managed and financially responsible manner. Another item to be addressed is to update and install the GIS maps on our existing iPads to accurately assist personnel in the field. I believe that everyone should always strive to do better. The assessor’s office is no exception, and if elected, I will find ways to improve office morale, motivation, and customer relations.

4. How would you respond and resolve assessment evaluations and/or disputes raised by residents?

In the twelve years I’ve been with the assessor’s office I have handled hundreds of assessment questions and/or disputes. When a taxpayer does not agree with a resolution I have proposed they may go to the commissioners and even to the state of appeals for resolution. Any of the public that has had contact with me knows that I have always been genuinely sincere and handled all situations with fairness and integrity.

5. Do you plan to pursue the Kinder Morgan tax dispute? Why or why not?

Yes. The taxpayers of Montezuma County deserve equality. Everyone should pay their share of taxes no matter how large or how small.

6. List your expertise and/or qualifications that set you apart from other candidates.

Before my tenure in the assessor’s office I was employed in the mortgage banking business for many years. The ability to multi-task, with a minimum of 4-5 individuals, and frequently more, required excellent customer skills. High production levels, the importance of meeting deadlines, and government guidelines were required. I received many awards for my professional strengths and skills. Previously, I managed a government contracting firm supervising 30 employees and handling all administrative duties, (ie. payroll, accounting, monthly reports, managing production schedules, etc.). I was responsible for preparing and submitting bids to the United States Attorney general office, along with budgeting and purchasing for contracts that were awarded.