By RICK HAYES firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — MT. VERNON — Jefferson County Treasurer Dan Knox has formally announced he will seek re-election in the November 2014 general election.
Knox, a Republican, has no opposition in the March primary.
Knox was appointed to the office in 2011, following the resignation of Debbie Elliott-Marlow, and defeated Sabrina Wheatley for the position in 2012, to fill out Marlow’s term. Knox will be seeking a full four-year term next fall.
“I believe there is more work to do and with the help of the citizens of Jefferson County we will continue to find improved ways of protecting people’s money, streamlining the real estate
tax collection cycle and reducing the operating costs and liabilities for the county,” Knox stated in a news release.
As the county’s chief financial officer, Knox has been challenged this past year by the county’s cash flow problem and a spiraling budget caused by the loss of Immigration, Customs and Enforcement detainees at the Jefferson County Justice Center.
“It’s been challenging, but it’s also been a good exercise for the county,” Knox said. “When crisis comes and when you have to face challenges, you begin to look at the processes of the way you do things and go, ‘O.K. what do we need to do better here?’ Through that, my office and I personally, have watched the cash flow very closely. That doesn’t mean that everybody has received the answer they want when they ask when a bill is going to be paid, but it does mean that we have made payroll every month, we are paying our bills, and we’re not going into the red.”
Knox said the county had to “dig itself out of a hole” following the loss of ICE detainees, and incurred extra costs when it contracted with Advanced Health Care Corrections.
“Crisis builds character and it teaches you new skills and forces you do do things differently that maybe you wouldn’t have ever done before. I think as a county we’ve learned some new skills,” Knox said. “It’s been a real challenge, but it’s been a privilege to be able to help and be instrumental in helping the county come out of this potential catastrophic situation that we were in.”
In listing his accomplishments while in office, Knox said the office has saved the county over $4,000 in paper and postage costs by changing the format of the current tax bill and reducing its size; eliminated the need for envelopes when sending out second and third notices during real estate tax collections; and joined with the Regional Office of Education’s buying cooperative, saving over $5,000 on the purchase of copy paper.
The office was also instrumental in working with the County Board and Second Judicial Circuit Probation to begin paying payroll costs up front, preventing the county from having to bank roll the State of Illinois for those services.
Knox and wife Erika of Woodlawn are the parents of two daughters: Eliana, 8, and Teya, 6. Knox is the son of Lindell and Sharon Knox, also of Woodlawn.