Aaron Connor is the first Democrat to run for Maricopa County Assessor since 1992.
Connor, who moved to Arizona from Denver, Colorado in 2016, has an extensive background in the mortgage and IT industries. He has been a “mortgage processor, loan officer, closer, junior underwriter, and title searcher.” His IT background focuses on software system development for the mortgage industry.
The Maricopa County Assessors Office, which staffs 300 people and has a $25,000,000 budget, is entrusted with assessing property values and releasing annual reports to residential and commercial property owners.
The current incumbent, Paul Petersen, has come under scrutiny, not because of anything at the Assessor’s office, but his involvement at “black market adoptions” with an overseas airline pipeline from the Marshall Islands to a suburb of Salt Lake City.
At the Phoenix café Lolas (Love those sea salt chocolate chip cookies), Mr. Connor sat down and discussed what he would do if elected to the Maricopa County Assessor Position in November 2020.
The questions and his responses are below.
- Please tell the reader about yourself and give at least two reasons you are qualified to serve as the next Maricopa County Assessor?
“When you are a kid, you never thought about being an Assessor. I have Professional experience in the mortgage (processor, loan officer, closer, junior underwriter, and title searching) industry. I have worked as a software developer focusing on the mortgage industry. I will be able to analyze the procedures and workings of the office. I can help modernize the website and other IT areas. Taxpayers should be able to have access to their property information, anytime, anywhere. I will also focus on customer service where I have coached, trained, and developed call centers that have won awards. Maricopa County is the fastest growing county and we need a full-time assessor and top-notch customer support for all taxpayers. I am passionate about community and service and believe that working class people can solve working class problems. This race is critical to all property owners because it directly impacts your pocketbook.”
- Please tell the reader at least two reasons you would be a better assessor than the current Assessor?
“First, and I have said this before, Maricopa County is the fastest growing county, and I believe we need to have someone full time in the Assessor position. And secondly, I (unlike the incumbent) have a Track record in the industry.”
- What are at least two goals, that the position has influence over, that you would pursue if elected to the County Assessor’s Office and please explain your reasons for those?
“ We need to focus on customer service to ensure all Taxpayers are receiving accurate and timely information and focus on bringing integrity and transparency (the three t’s transparency technology, trust) to the office. On day one, we open the doors up and let everyone know what is inside. We want to educate people on how the assessor’s office works. We will work on technological aspects and have a user-friendly interface that works on a mobile device. The government should work and listen to the people.”
- What would you like the voters to know about yourself that was not covered in the preceding questions?
“I definitely want to bring integrity back through the three t’s. Please read more about me on my campaign website and Facebook. If people have questions, please reach out to me.”
When discussing his candidacy, Mr. Connor brought up what every voter does when they first see their ballot, likening it to a dinner menu. Seeing positions like the assessors as the position people do not know as much about (and sometimes ignore), he stresses that it is important to “open your ballot, go to the bottom, eat your peas and work your way up to the dessert (the President).”
Democrats would do well to remember that there is no such thing as an unimportant public service position. Republicans learned that and built a team of reactionary public servants to enact a backward agenda that they say will propel us to a non-existent “Leave it to Beaver” society.
Maricopa County Democratic Chair Steve Slugocki commented that:
“Some people have questioned about this role being nonpartisan and why is it important for a Democratic Assessor vs. a Republican. Well, they used to say the same thing about County Recorder.”
Democrats should not treat local, county, and state offices as less important than the national ones. That is the only way to build a forward-looking legislative, executive, and judicial majority.
Aaron Connor wants to bring his experience, professionalism, and vision to the Maricopa County Assessor’s office.
His background is a definite improvement over the incumbent who has shuttled to Salt Lake City to oversee Black Market adoptions when he is not at his day job.
Voters should seriously consider Mr. Connor when voting for Maricopa County Assessor in 2020.