New collector appointed in Carter County

Friday, October 19, 2012

VAN BUREN, Mo. -- A new Carter County collector was appointed by the governor Wednesday, and the office could reopen as soon as today, county officials say.

Democrat Deborah Kay Turley of Van Buren replaces Jennifer Clark-Williams.

"Deborah Turley has a great deal of experience in the local business community, and I am confident that she will ably serve the citizens of Carter County in this position," Gov. Jay Nixon said in a news release.

The collector's office has been closed since Clark-Williams resigned Oct. 9, after an announcement the Carter County prosecutor expects to seek felony charges against the longtime elected official for missing property tax money.

The process to get Turley bonded begins today, said county clerk Rebecca Simpson Gibbs. "If everything clears, and I feel it will, the collector's office may be open by Friday," she said.

Simpson Gibbs does not believe the closure of the past few days will delay mailing personal and property tax bills for very long.

Turley worked in the collector's office in the late 1980s, according to the governor's office.

She was nominated for the position by the Carter County Democratic Committee and will hold the position until a general election in 2014.

Turley has more than 25 years of business experience, including bookkeeping for a local resort and the Van Buren newspaper, The Current Local. She is the daughter-in-law of Alan Turley, The Current Local's owner.

A graduate of Van Buren High School, Turley earned an associate degree from Three Rivers Community College.

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