(Leek 1): According to a reliable source, Assessor Don Munks hired R. C. Cavazos to serve as Deputy Assessor without the advice from any of the people assigned to the selection committee. Munks' choice was apparently a surprise to everyone!
(Leek 2): In response to questions submitted to the Assessor about the required 5-Person Open Space Advisory Committee, Don Munks does not know if Skagit County has one, who's on it, or when they met last. This committee is a legislative requirement. The Department of Revenue wrote on page 8 in their Review of the Current Use Program: "Skagit County has an active advisory committee." So we at Skagit Leeks suggest that Mr. Munks seek help from our three Commissioners by asking them: (1) Who's on the committee? (2) What are they supposed to do? (3) When do they meet?
(Leek 3): On December 2, we received a copy of the Assessor's Strategic Plan, and would best describe it as being "a day late and a dollar short." Or, to be more specific, 11 days late and reading more like a "core dump of Wes Hagen's brain."
(The following definition is offered by Skagit Leeks: Simply put, the purpose of a strategic plan is to clarify the overall purpose and desired results of an organization, and how those results will be achieved.)
Here are two examples from the Skagit County Assessor's Strategic Plan:
(1) From page 2 (about computer system issues): "Knowledge of both these programs is limited in Skagit County and not supported by Skagit County's IS department. Efforts began in June, but the technical knowledge required to set up Crystal Reports proved too great. Assistance from Clark County on Access vaporized when they bogged down in the testing of Phase II of PACS."
(2) From page 6 (about Commercial Appeal Processing): "At the end of 2009 there were over one billion dollars in disputed value. The at-risk value represented by the largest 30 appeals exceeded one million tax dollars."
Skagit County taxpayers might want to pay close attention to their tax statements in February 2012. If our Assessor does not understand what a Strategic Plan is ... what else might he not understand about the job he was elected to perform?