Journal-Times (Grayson, KY)

February 5, 2014

Living a legacy: Leslie J. Kiser appointed Carter PVA

By Leeann Akers - Editor
Journal-Times

Feb. 5, 2014 — She's been by her father's side since his second term in office as Carter County's property valuation administrator (PVA).

Leslie Kiser has been working under her father's wing for nearly 30 years and now has been appointed to the position.

Charlie Kiser, Jr. decided to vacate his seat on Friday. Gov. Steve Beshear appointed Leslie to the position effective Saturday. She never missed a beat.

“I was just out of high school and he hired me to work up here with him,” Kiser said of her father. “I have always enjoyed the work and being at the courthouse but I never dreamed I would stay here this long. I thought a summer or two but I ended up staying.”

Charlie Kiser has only been opposed twice since he became PVA – once in 2006 and again in 2010.

“No one seems to want this job,” Leslie said with a laugh. She is unopposed in the May and November elections. “I am not a politician but I know how to do this job. Ask me again in 2018, but for now I'm excited about the job at hand.”

One main concern for both she and her father has been pressure from the state to increase property values.

“They have to be raised sometimes, but this isn't land in Frankfort or Fayette County,” she said. “We do what we have to do but we don't want to put an unnecessary burden on the county's taxpayers.”

As PVA, Kiser is charged with equitably assessing real and personal property. Tracking ownership changes, maintaining maps, updating building characteristics, and administrating property exemptions are other duties of the position.

The PVA also provides a variety of information management services as custodian of the parcel ownership database, most of which is public information.

The Kentucky Constitution requires equality and uniformity through fair market value assessments. Fair market value is generally defined as the price that property will bring in a fair voluntary sale between a willing seller and a willing buyer on the market for a given period of time.

In her experience with the PVA's office, Kiser has seen a lot of changes in technology. Although the office still keeps paper maps, they also keep digital records, which is the focus of one of her goals for the office.

“A lot of the photos of the structures we have are old and that was because it used to cost a lot to make new ones,” Kiser said. “Now that everything is digital, it costs nothing but time.”

Even armed with a digital camera, Kiser knows it will be a daunting task to document every structure. The difficult part will be getting used to being the PVA instead of a deputy.

“It will be weird to not have him here in the office if I need to ask him something,” Kiser said of her father. “He has been a good boss and this has been a good working environment. It will take some getting used to.”

In the meantime, Charlie Kiser, Jr. will be a few blocks away, not as PVA, but still a father who passed his legacy on to his daughter.

Leeann Akers can be reached at lakers@journal-times.com or by phone at 474-5101.