Bill calls for April election for county assessor

The County Council last week introduced a bill calling for a special election in April so voters can choose an assessor.

The bill was up for perfection Monday — after the Call went to press.

Missouri voters on Nov. 2 approved a constitutional amendment requiring the election of the St. Louis County assessor, previously an appointed position. County voters overwhelmingly approved an identical charter amendment in the Aug. 3 primary election.

As proposed, county voters would return to the polls April 5 to elect an assessor.

The winner would serve through Dec. 31, 2014. The assessor would be elected to four-year terms beginning with the November 2014 general election.

The county executive would fill a vacancy in the office subject to council approval.

Assessor candidates must be qualified voters who have lived in the county for at least two years before the election.

Once the council approves the bill calling for the special election, the county Board of Election Commissioners will notify the chairs of the Democratic and Republican nominating committees, and the committees will convene to select their candidates, County Executive Charlie Dooley wrote in a recent letter to council members.

Dooley in the letter recommended the assessor’s salary be set at $95,000, up from $90,000. By law, salaries for county elected positions can be changed only at the start of each term.