Nevada County: key posts opening up as assessor, treasurer to step down | SierraSun.com

Nevada County: key posts opening up as assessor, treasurer to step down

Dave Moller
Sun News Service

GRASS VALLEY, Calif. and#8212; Nevada County Assessor Dale Flippin and Treasurer-Tax Collector E. Christina and#8220;Chrisand#8221; Dabis have announced they will step down at the end of the year and not run again. Both will leave with a year remaining in their elected terms, leaving the Nevada County Board of Supervisors to name replacements.

Late Tuesday, Dabis said she would step down Dec. 30 after seven terms. Late Monday, Flippin announced he would retire Dec. 31 and not run a third time.

Dabis said the timing of her resignation was and#8220;just coincidental,and#8221; and not a ploy to help appointed incumbents get elected in next year’s balloting.

The outgoing treasurer wrestled with the resignation because of the remaining year in her term, but felt that after 39 years in Nevada County government, she wasn’t cheating the voters, Dabis said.

and#8220;My drug of choice is public service,and#8221; Dabis said. and#8220;I’ll probably volunteer here and there. I still want to be a public servant.and#8221;

Flippin also had to seriously think about leaving office early, he said.

and#8220;It was a concern. I hope they’re not disappointed,and#8221; said Flippin of the voters who re-elected him in 2006.

and#8220;It’s really been great serving the constituents,and#8221; Flippin added. and#8220;It’s great they had confidence to re-elect me two times.and#8221;

The Board of Supervisors can now appoint replacements for both officials.

To remain in office, the appointees must run for the offices in the June primary and#8212; or, if a runoff becomes necessary, in the November general election.

The election winners will be sworn into office in January 2011, said Beth Goodrich of the county Elections Office.

Dabis has been grooming Tina Vernon of the County Executive Office to be her successor, and will recommend her to the Board of Supervisors, she said.

and#8220;No one in my office wants it,and#8221; Dabis said. and#8220;They don’t want the politics.and#8221;

Dabis started her county government career in the assessor’s office in 1967, took some time off to have a child, and then returned in the early 1970s to the treasurer’s office.

She ran in 1982 when former Treasurer-Tax Collector Marcella Carson retired and asked her to run.

When Dabis started, everything was done manually on paper, Dabis said.

Through the years, she was involved with the computerization of the county and said the Internet has made it easier to share and gather data.

With no assistant county assessor, there is no obvious successor to fulfill Flippin’s term, he said. He is not endorsing anyone, adding, and#8220;It’s the board’s decision.and#8221;

The outgoing assessor first ran for the office in 1998 and was defeated by Art Green, he said.

When Green stepped down in 2000, the Board of Supervisors appointed Flippin to fulfill his term, he said. He was elected in 2002 for the first time.

The ups and downs of the housing market here during his tenure and#8220;presented challenges, but it comes with the territory,and#8221; Flippin said.

The normal office workload is spurred mostly from new construction and changes of ownership, Flippin said.

When housing values started plunging a few years ago after the real estate market peaked, the workload increased 60 percent as people sought reassessments, he said. Taking on that extra work with the same amount of people was hard, but the need was understandable, Flippin said.

A similar wave of new assessment work occurred after the 49er Fire in 1988, when Flippin first started in the assessor’s office.

and#8220;We were not prepared, and we had to review a lot of sites for new values,and#8221; Flippin said. and#8220;It’s what makes this business interesting: You never know what’s around the corner.and#8221;

The outgoing assessor said he and his wife, Lori Flippin, will stay in the area for a while because they love it so much. They moved here and#8220;on purpose,and#8221; he said, in 1982 from Dale’s native home in Orange County after discovering the foothills.