New Geneva Township assessor sworn in
Though Alex Fritz was elected April 8 as the new Geneva Township assessor, he was sworn in Tuesday -- but will not take office until Jan. 1, after current Township Assessor Denise LaCure's last day in office.
Confused? Don't be. Blame it on the peculiarities of township assessor rules.
"Our terms run on the calendar year," LaCure said. "He can't actually take office until the new calendar year."
Township Clerk Geoffrey Carreiro swore in Fritz as the new assessor in a small ceremony at the township office in Geneva.
Fritz worked for LaCure as a deputy assessor for the past three years, as she mentored him to step into the job upon her retirement after three terms.
"I liked him instantly," LaCure said. "He was looking to get into the field and run for assessor. I said, 'I have a great place for you because I'm retiring.'"
Fritz had two years of experience as a deputy assessor working part-time for his father, Rutland Township Assessor Gary Fritz.
"Alex has worked very hard. He did an internship with me up in Rutland Township," Gary Fritz said. "I'm very proud of Alex. He's worked very hard his whole life."
Township assessors have to account for the value of all the parcels of land in the township.
"We have to value them, and we, of course, have different methodologies to do that -- fairness being one of them," LaCure said. "A big part of our job is to compare apples to apples as best we can. No two properties are exactly the same, and we try to stay within a range of values and get everybody as close to the average as we can."
When he takes the helm, Alex Fritz plans to host workshops to inform the public about how the assessment cycle works and how exemptions work.
"Invite seniors and taxpayers and teach them the ropes and show them how the cycle works," Alex Fritz said. "Informing the public of what their options are and make it known."
Alex Fritz said he would also put these workshops on the township's Facebook page so those who could not attend can learn.
The next quadrennial reassessment is in 2023 when all township assessors look at the property values in their entire townships.
"That kind of sets the pace for the next three years," Alex Fritz said. "Denise has done an excellent job. Our values are definitely uniform."