Collector of Revenue candidates for primary election

Thursday, July 31, 2014

In the primary election to be held Tuesday, Aug. 5, there are two candidates running on the Republican Party ballot for Saline County's Collector of Revenue and one candidate running on the Democratic Party ballot.

Anna Clemens Gass

Anna Clemens Gass (REP)

Gass is a graduate from Marshall High School, who studied one year in Germany as an exchange student through FFA. She pursued her undergraduate degree at College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, where she graduated with a degree in ag business with an emphasis in animal science.

After graduating, she returned to Marshall where she helped on the family farm and worked for the MFA Swine Complex. After having her daughter, she went to work for Missouri Valley College, where she was one of the lead recruiters in the admission's office for seven years.

While working in the admission's office, she continued her education and received her master's degree in business administration from Lindenwood University. She then moved into the financial aid office at MVC, where she worked in depth as the liaison between students, parents, administration and the federal government to obtain financial support for Valley students.

Q: What qualifies you for this position?

A: "I bring with me 15 plus years of problem solving, customer service and accounting experience. During my seven years of working in financial aid, I certified, verified and disbursed over $40 million in student loans, grants and scholarships. I helped families and students work through difficult situations so that they could obtain their goal of going to college. I know how important accuracy in accounting and reporting is for everyone involved, whether it is a year end financial statement, an application for enrollment or the collection and protection of public funds.

"Through the completion of my MBA, I received a deeper insight into the various challenges and opportunities of management. With my education, experience and work ethic, I am am prepared to step into the county collector's office."

Q: What are your goals if elected county collector?

A: "As the Saline County Collector, I will ensure that customers are treated kindly with accurate and efficient service. I am dedicated to the responsible management of tax payer money, not only as a concerned citizen and tax payer myself, but also as an experienced financial manager of large sums of money. I will strive to provide a friendly, productive office for staff and customers backed by integrity. I am prepared to make any changes to the schedule and office setup necessary to accomplish this task."

Cindi Sims

Cindi Sims (REP)

Sims was born and raised in Sweet Springs. She is a graduate of Sweet Springs R-7 and has a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the University of Missouri.

Sims has been married to her husband, Ryan, for 17 years and they have three children -- Garrett, 14; Emma, 13; and Ethan, 11. Their children are active in sports and 4-H. As a family, they like to travel and attend sporting events.

Sims and her family lives on a farm north of Sweet Springs, where they raise corn, soybeans and cattle, along with a few hogs that their children show during the summer. In 2000, they started Sims Feed and Supply by selling cattle equipment at the farm and in 2004, they added a feed line to the products sold.

Q: What qualifies you for this position?

A: "First, I have spent nine years in banking and 15 years in management. I've held the positions of teller, loan assistant, customer service manager, branch manager and commercial lender. I managed an $11 million loan portfolio servicing over 275 loans as a single officer branch. I have prepared budgets for the branch and operated within those parameters.

"Second, I have a passion to help people. I enjoyed my time as customer service manager because I was able to take customer issues from start to finish. I enjoy digging through problems and finding resolutions that suited both the company and the customer."

Q: What are your goals if elected county collector?

A: "My goal is to serve the citizens of Saline County in a responsible and respectful way, by providing friendly, efficient and accountable services while following the laws of the State of Missouri. I will bring the highest levels of customer service, integrity and professionalism to the Office of Collector."

Shelly Walter

Shelly Walter (DEM)

Walter is the chief deputy collector in the collector's office. I have held this position for the last four years working under Grace Miles, county collector.

She has lived in Marshall all her life. She is a graduate of Marshall High School and attended State Fair Community College. Her husband of 30 years is Kevin Walter. He has been employed with Missouri Department of Transportation for 31 years. They have one daughter, MacKenzie Hoffmann. She and her husband, Drew Hoffmann, reside in Marshall. MacKenzie is a registered nurse and is employed at I-70 Community Hospital in Sweet Springs and Bothwell Regional Hospital in Sedalia. Drew is employed with Pro Gym in Marshall. Walter's parents are Paul and Rita Stockhorst of Sedalia, formerly of Marshall. Her dad was a meat cutter for Safeway for many years and her mother worked for the school system as a cook. They are both now retired.

She has served as chairman and co-chairman for the Saline County BBQ -- annually held in Marshall -- for the past 4 years; board member of the Saline County Fair Association; and a volunteer for projects and fundraisers for the fair association. She is also a member of the Saline County Democrat Club.

Q: What qualifies you for this position?

A: Walter has 26 years experience in accounting and four years as chief deputy collector.

"In the last four years, I have worked closely with the Collector Grace Miles in managing the office on a daily basis. In her absence, I have assumed the duties of the collector. The collector's office not only is involved with collecting personal and real estate taxes; It involves working with Banks, lending institutions, title companies, cities of Saline County, levee districts, Merchants of Saline County and Department of Revenue."

Q: What are your goals if elected county collector?

A: "My goals are:

-- Have software made available to allow individuals to access and printout their paid Personal tax receipts online.

-- Continue to mail out the personal/real estate/levee-drainage and merchant license bills in a timely fashion.

-- Run office efficiently without comprising customer service.

-- Continue to upgrade collector's software as updates become available.

-- Obtain new ideas and approaches by attending workshops and conferences throughout the year.

-- Work to continue to streamline the collection process to allow timely disbursements of funds according to State Statues.

-- In the near future, provide informative information including GSI and picture of properties which appear on yearly tax sale.

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