No Change In Status Of Assessor’s Software

2019 will come and go with no changes to the software used in the office of Assessor Kelli Vestal.

An issue that has lingered for more than a year remains unsettled, according to Crawford County commissioners.

They confirmed December 19 that there are no updates on the situation.

Vestal continues to use Governmentor, which puts her at odds with the commission. Vestal has remained firm that Governmentor remains perfectly functional and she has cited its use in other counties in the state as evidence that changes are unnecessary.

The county is in the process of overhauling its software. The clerk and treasurer will use Incode. 

In October 2018, the commission voted to go with Incode after making a promise to voters that newer software would be purchased to clean up recurring issues with QuickBooks.

The commission gave Vestal and Collector Pat Schwent six months to fix issues between their respective software. Schwent uses DEVNET.

Last April, the commission said the six-month period had passed and voted to install Vanguard over Vestal’s wishes.

Vanguard is an assessment software that meshes with Incode. The software is used in 55 counties in Missouri.

When Presiding Commissioner Leo Sanders told Vestal the decision had been made for her, Vestal resisted. 

Vanguard slowly backed out. The company initially denied submitting a bid over Vestal’s objections to using the software. When the commission introduced Vanguard, problems became apparent right away. 

On November 5, the commission again attempted to override Vestal by going with DEVNET.

When Vestal learned of what the commission was prepared to do, she told them.

“I’m not going to use it,” she said, pointing out that a state statute the commission was relying on applied only to first-class counties.

Vestal also accused the commission of trying to cancel Governmentor behind her back.

Prosecuting Attorney David Smith told commissioners that Vestal was right, but two weeks later, two other statutes were discovered that may give the commission the final call.

Since November 19, all discussion has been contained to closed session. Smith is reportedly working to settle obstacles between the assessor and collector.

Sullivan Independent News

Sullivan Independent News
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