The Ottumwa Courier

June 20, 2013

Three vie for county recorder seat

By CHELSEA DAVIS Courier staff writer
Ottumwa Courier

---- — OTTUMWA — One open position in the Wapello County Courthouse will be filled following a special election next month.

Wapello County Recorder Joyce Hass retired in May after working in the courthouse for 37 years. As of the filing deadline a week ago, three candidates filed papers to run for the position.

Lisa Kent, who currently works in the recorder's office, Mary Riedel-Butler, who currently works in the county auditor's office, and Betty Stromgren, who is currently the secretary for the county board of supervisors, have all filed papers.

Kent was nominated by the Democratic party, while Riedel-Butler and Stromgren were both nominated by petition, said Wapello County Auditor Kelly Spurgeon.

"They had to take out nomination papers and get signatures," Spurgeon said of Riedel-Butler and Stromgren. "[Kent] did take out papers, but since the Democratic party nominated her as its nominee, she had to withdraw her petition."

The Republican party did not nominate anyone for the position.

A special election will be held on July 9 to fill the position. The county recorder's duties include maintaining real estate documents, birth, death and marriage certificates, issuing marriage licenses and applications, registering and titling boats, snowmobiles and off-highway vehicles and issuing hunting and fishing licenses.

"Just like the auditor, the treasurer, supervisors, recorder, sheriff and county attorney are all elected," Spurgeon said. "The supervisors could have chosen to appoint somebody to fill the unexpired term, but they didn't choose to do that."

Hass' term would have expired next year.

A vacancy on the Blakesburg CIty Council is also on the special election's ballot to fill a position left open by Alan Bettis, who resigned on April 17.

The council person's term ends Jan. 2, 2016, as Bettis had just been elected to the position last year.