Oakland County Treasurer

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  • Candidate picture

    John P. McCulloch

  • Candidate picture

    Andy Meisner

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Biographical Information

What are the most pressing challenges facing the office in the next four years?

How to do you propose helping residents avoid tax foreclosure and stay in their homes?

Do you support a land bank? Why or why not?

What plans, if any, do you have to make technological advances in the office to make it easier for residents to pay their taxes online or while visiting other county offices or locations?

Which areas of the treasurer’s office need the most improvement, and what suggestions can you offer for making them better?

Do you support and will you appear at campaign events with your party’s presidential nominee?

Have you ever been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor? If so, explain.

Have you ever filed for personal bankruptcy? If so, explain.

City of residence Life long resident of Royal Oak
Age 60
Family Adriana-wife of 33 years, Catherine-daughter, JoAnna-daughter, John, Jr.- son
Education Juris Doctor-MSU Law School, Bachelor of Accountancy-Walsh College
Vehicles owned 2009 Ford Escape
Professional Experience Seasoned, strategic, and results-focused CPA and attorney, equipped with extensive years of experience in accounting operations and human resource management; complemented with broad financial, marketing, legal, and technical background. Demonstrate wide-ranging knowledge of budgeting, forecasting and cost control principles, coupled with proficiency in handling complex business, legal, financing, and tax issues. Possess a record of accomplishment in enhancing an organization while reducing operating and capital costs. Known for building and motivating cross-functional teams that exceed expectations
Political Experience Water Resources Commissioner-12 years, County Commissioner(5years as Chairman)-10 years
Race/ethnicity Caucasian
One major reason L. Brooks Patterson is endorsing me is because I worked with him to obtain Oakland County’s AAA Bond Rating (a top priority) that saves money for every taxpayer in Oakland County. As a CPA, I will invest county tax dollars in the best interest of all taxpayers, and I will provide the type of transparency we do not have now. When I am elected, taxpayers will know how their money is invested, with whom it is invested, and why they were chosen, and it will be on my website. As County Commission Board Chair, and County Water Resources Commissioner,, I cut the tax rate four times, lowered water rates, and solved a water quality problem that saved taxpayers $160 million.
Because the economy is improving nationally, the number of default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions in the first six months of 2016 was down significantly according to RealtyTrac. However, some of our residents still are struggling to remain in their home because they are behind in paying their taxes. I would make it a priority working with people, one-on-one, to provide extensions and setting up payment plans. I would also assist them in applying for state aid and promote financial counseling. These efforts would help protect seniors and the less fortunate as well as help communities maintain property values.
There are other viable alternatives available that are much more effective than a land bank. The current treasurer Andy Meisner failed in his attempt to create such an authority in Oakland County thanks to serious concerns raised by County Executive Brooks Patterson. As treasurer, I will ensure properties sold at auction are offered under clear and transparent terms with the end goal of putting these properties back on the tax rolls and achieving the highest sale price to recover public funds for taxpayers.
As Treasurer, I would leverage today’s information technology resources to more effectively and efficiently meet the needs of the office. I would also utilize innovative outreach strategies to increase public awareness of the Treasurer’s office and the various programs, services, and benefits available to our residents. I would work closely with County Executive Brooks Patterson, who has been recognized nationally for technological advances in Oakland County, as well as negotiate with our banking and business partners to simplify work processes, take advantage of cutting edge technology to gain efficiencies, save money, and provide better performance.
County funds should be invested based upon the best return on investment for the taxpayers while minimizing risk. A lack of transparency by the current treasurer in investing Oakland County funds has created the perception of that these decisions are often based on politics and not prudent public policy. Currently the public is able to monitor where these funds are placed, but they are not afforded any information regarding the factors used to make these decisions. I would regularly provide this information online and competitively bid for the placement of county funds with financial institutions. Taxpayers deserve to understand the factors used to determine the placement of funds.
Although he was not my candidate in the Presidential Primary, as a Republican, I support Donald Trump’s candidacy. I have never appeared at a presidential candidate’s event, and I do not expect 2016 to be any different. I will appear with our candidate if I do not have a prior engagement.
City of residence Huntington Woods
Age 43
Family Wife Sara Meisner, two children, Asher 3 and Levi 7 months
Education University of Michigan 1995 University of Detroit Mercy Law School 2006
Vehicles owned 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Professional Experience - Congressional staffer, responsible for public policy - Vice President of a national non profit that works to prevent violence and substance abuse - Corporate Communications Director for a major real estate developer - Lawyer
Political Experience State Representative - District 27 2002-2008 Oakland County Treasurer 2009 - present
Race/ethnicity Caucasian
Campaign Website
Recovering the lost tax base from the recession and housing crisis. Creating opportunity for all Oakland County families and communities to succeed, including addressing alarming increases in poverty and homelessness. Utilizing technology to provide a greater value to Oakland County taxpayers.
My office has created 14,000 monthly payment plans with families trying to stay in their homes and businesses trying to keep their doors open in Oakland County which we must continue. We are also actively promoting the Step Forward Program, which can provide families with delinquent taxes up to $30,000 to pay off their delinquent taxes. Over 1,000 Oakland County families so far have received $8.5 million in support through this program, which goes directly to the County's bottom line and stabilizes neighborhoods.
I support land banks when they are transparent, managed properly and one part of a broader strategy. As chairman of the Michigan land bank from 2009 to 2012, we were able to fight blight, invest in transformational downtown and community development projects and create many good paying jobs in Pontiac, Detroit, Flint and statewide. This is an example of land banks being effective.
We already have a very robust system for online payment of bills and accessing property information. In the future, I'm looking to expand access through technology by using remote kiosks located in local communities to save tax payers from driving to Pontiac to pay their taxes.
Work harder to get title industry to insure tax foreclosure deeds thus removing a barrier for families who are buying tax foreclosed property and moving in and sending kids to local schools. Educate and empower more people about the tax foreclosure process so they can avoid potential loss of their property and payment of interest and fees.
Yes I do support Hillary Clinton for president and have appeared at campaign events for her.