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Dailey seeks to retain recorder of deeds seat

Cape Gazette of Lewes, Delaware

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Republican Scott Dailey is hoping to hold onto his seat as the Sussex County recorder of deeds. He faces Democrat Alma Roach in the upcoming election.

What does the recorder of deeds do? What are the primary functions of the office?

Dailey: By maintaining Sussex County land records, the recorder's office generates millions in revenue for Sussex County government. The office collects millions in tax revenue for the state, county and many local municipalities. The primary role of the recorder of deeds is to oversee this vital and busy office. The recorder makes sure the records are accurately preserved and money is accurately collected. The elected recorder oversees a staff of 14 with an annual operating budget of over $1 million.

Roach: The office receives records and processes and delivers the following: deeds, restric tions, easements, federal tax liens, releases of federal tax liens, mortgages, partial releases of mortgages, satisfaction of mortgages, assignments and plot plans. The office also collects transfer taxes for the county and state and several other municipalities. The office is continuing to add images to the new computer system.

Why should this office be an elected position and not an appointed one?

Dailey: The recorder's office generates millions of dollars each year in revenue, and the office is an elected office according to the state constitution. Gov. Jack Markell proposed the elimination of the office so that it would become a state-appointed position. If the state constitution were amended so that this office was no longer elected, the revenue it generates would go to Dover rather than Sussex County. I believe our local government spends this money more effectively, and I believe the office is operated more effectively because the recorder of deeds is directly accountable to voters in Sussex County.

Roach: I don't believe in taking the right to vote away from the registered voters.

Give three specific ways the Recorder of Deeds Office could better serve the public.

Dailey: When I was elected in 2010,1 promised to run the office responsibly. With the help of my outstanding staff, the office has run over $375,000 under budget. I also promised to modernize the office, and the office now accepts electronic recording. My team also made sure all records were archived and preserved properly. If re-elected, I will make property records more available on the internet, and I will work toward a modern, 21st century office. I will continue to work with the staff to increase efficiency and control costs. I also will continue my efforts to keep this office and its revenue based and spent in Sussex County.

Roach: Accountability - Public service is the first priority. I will be in the office on a daily basis using my 30 years of experience. Outreach - I'll start a new public information program. Maintenance: Public records - your history in real estate ownership - lives in this office. It's important these documents reside in a properly preserved, accessible and managed environment.

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Original Publication Date: October 21, 2014

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