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> Former La Porte Mayor Leigh Morris Running For La Porte County Treasurer
taxthedeer
post Jun 27 2012, 03:14 PM
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http://heraldargus.com/articles/2012/06/26...45506535922.txt

QUOTE
Morris will run for treasurer

By Matt Fritz
Staff writer
1-866-362-2167 Ext. 13887
mfritz@heraldargus.com
Published: Tuesday, June 26, 2012 4:58 PM CDT

La PORTE — A former La Porte mayor is running for county treasurer.

Leigh Morris, former mayor of the city of La Porte, was nominated by the Republican caucus on Saturday to be the party's county treasurer nominee in the upcoming November elections. He was nominated on Saturday along with Rodney Peters for county coroner, Keith Harris for clerk of the circuit court and Ron Kniola for a county council at-large seat.

During a press conference with Republican candidates on Monday, Morris said the treasurer is one of the key positions to deal with the county's property tax situation.

"(Fixing the property tax situation) will take some strong leadership," he said. "These problems have been around a long time and they've resisted easy solutions. I'm accustomed to that."

Morris was the CEO at IU Health La Porte Hospital for more than 30 years, where he said he learned to deal with budgets and financial situations and resolving system problems.

"That's exactly what we have to do here," he said.

He said the position has three major responsibilities: billing and collecting taxes, distributing funds and working with the auditor to make sure those funds are properly accounted for, and investing unexpended county funds.

"As a hospital CEO you have to be part of a team effort," he said. "Nothing gets accomplished in a hospital unless you have a team working at it. That's what we need in county government and I think I'm well equipped to bring that."

Also at the conference was circuit court clerk nominee Keith Harris, who said there is a lot of room for improvement in the position.

"This is one of the most important offices in La Porte County or any county," he said. "We have to know that our elections are running above board, that everything is done according to statute."

He said there have been too many instances of judges issuing orders and later finding them in the wrong file case.

Harris said he has 30 years of business and management experience to bring to the office, with the last 13 years spent running a small, technology based business. He said this will give him experience as the clerk's office becomes more technology oriented.

Running for the county commissioner district 2 seat, Republican nominee Sharon Kirkham said that, if elected, she wants to continue the county's cooperative ventures with Michigan City and the city of La Porte in the economic development of the area.

Some of the experience she brings includes the four years she served as a council person on the city council from 2004 to 2007.

Running for the county recorder, Republican nominee Suzanne Miller said, if elected, she wants to treat everyone in the county with respect and to run the recorder office smoothly and efficiently.

She said her qualifications include her time as owner of Maple City Aviation, among other businesses, and her past roles as president and treasurer of several organizations.

Running for one of the county council at-large seats, Ron Kniola said he wants to focus on employment, pointing out that La Porte County has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the state.
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