Tax Collector’s race taking shape

Published 7:20pm Monday, March 31, 2014

The Dallas County Tax Collector’s race is well underway, with two Democratic candidates vying for the spot. 

Incumbent Tammy Jones King is running against Clark Elementary School teacher Cicely Curtis for tax collector. The position is the head of an office that receives about $9 million in tax payments from Dallas County residents and, in turn, disperses the funds to the State of Alabama, schools and several other agencies.

Both King and Curtis said making tax payments easy and running the office effectively are important goals.

King’s time with the tax collector’s office dates back 24 years. For two years, King served as the chief clerk in the tax collector’s office. She was born in Pensacola, Fla., but graduated from Selma High School.

King said her primary goals if re-elected would be to run an effective, efficient office and continue improving the office’s online payment system.

“I think it’s important  to constantly keep up with technology,” King said. “The more options that people have to pay taxes, the better. Paying online is helpful for those that are out of town or might not be able to make it to the tax collector’s office.”

King said providing fair treatment for all taxpayers is also important.

Curtis is a Selma High School and Concordia College alumnae. She placed a heavy emphasis on her teaching background, saying it would be helpful in educating taxpayers about the Dallas County Tax Collector’s office.

“The most important part is collecting taxes, but I think it’s important to add an education component,” Curtis said. “Most people don’t event know who the tax collector is. I believe in bringing about an awareness to educate citizens of the simple fact that these millions of ad-valorem tax dollars that are collected are dispersed right back out to help fund the operation of entities we utilize on a daily basis.”

Another one of Curtis’ goals is to establish a summer job program within the tax collector’s office for teens.

The June 3 statewide primary elections will likely determine the next tax collector as both candidates are running as Democrats. Though, candidates who didn’t qualify with a party still have a chance to qualify for elections. Candidates can run as an independent by presenting a petition with signatures of 3 percent or more of voters in their precinct during the 2010 gubernatorial election.

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