Republicans Helser, Sandy Vie For Auditor Nomination
By Ray Balogh
WARSAW — Republicans Rhonda J. Helser and Chasity Sandy will compete in the May 3 primary election for the office of Kosciusko County Auditor. The winner will be placed on the ballot for the general election Tuesday, Nov. 8.
InkFreeNews asked each candidate to provide a brief bio and answer three questions about serving in the auditor’s office. Here are their answers:
Helser: “I am a mother, wife and proven conservative. In our free time, my husband and I compete in cowboy action shooting through the Single Action Shooting Society. We enjoy camping and time spent with grandchildren. I am an active member of our wonderful community.”
Sandy: “I was born and raised in Kosciusko County. I grew up on a farm where we raised livestock. I married my husband, Matthew, and we raised two daughters in this beautiful county. We enjoy being outside, camping, hiking and being with family. I could never really see myself anywhere else other than here. I love the smaller communities and all the hidden gems our county has to offer. I rely on my faith to guide me.”
What education, work, and life experiences do you have that qualify you to run for auditor?
Helser: “I believe actions speak louder than words and over the years I have acted as a precinct committeewoman, an active member of the Kosciusko County Republican Women’s Club and county party and as your elected Kosciusko County Treasurer. In fact, early in my career I showed the same dedication when I worked in the treasurer and auditor’s office. Beyond the extensive proven experience I have serving our community, I was chosen to be the Kosciusko County Republican Woman of the Year in 2021. My life experiences and work history qualify me to be your Republican nominee for Kosciusko County Auditor.”
Sandy: “I graduated from WCHS in 1990. I started in the auditor’s office in 1994 working with Pat Brown as a counter deputy. Through my 28 years as part of the auditor’s office, I have worked on many projects. The most popular project would be the Beacon GIS system, which I helped build the backbone of. I have been a part of building in-office processes that streamline and best apply the taxpayer’s money. I strive to spend my money responsibly and feel the county budget should be treated the same way.”
What are the most pressing challenges in the auditor’s office at this time, and how will you address those challenges?
Helser: “One of the current challenges facing the auditor’s office is keeping up with the ever-changing state laws and legislation that affect all taxpayers. Since serving as the county treasurer, I have volunteered to be on the legislative committee through our Indiana County Treasurer Association and made it a practice to educate myself on the issues in each legislative session. I plan to use the experience I have gained in the auditor’s office to help educate our county taxpayers.”
Sandy: “I feel the most pressing challenge is providing the best service we can without adding additional costs to the taxpayer and also staying educated on the most up-to-date information from the state and the ever-changing legislation. My goal would be to keep communication open with the state agencies and state elected officials to navigate the challenges presented to us as a county. I also intend to maintain our representation in AIC and auditors association. Additionally we will continue the practice of keeping an open door to the taxpayer and their concerns as a priority.”
What are your philosophy and priorities in serving the public through the auditor’s office, and what ideas, if any, do you have to improve the functions of the office?
Helser: “As I have proven, my philosophy is that an elected position is a duty and service to the community. We live in a beautiful county, in the best state in the nation. I will continue to serve and make sure that the auditor’s office is fiscally responsible, is open and transparent, and builds relationships with county taxpayers so we will always share a seat at the table.”
Sandy: “The taxpayer always comes first. We do this job every day. To a taxpayer needing help, the information is foreign to them, and we need to be as accommodating and empathetic to them as possible. I believe the office runs well; however, there is always room for improvement and growth. My goal is to make more functions of the office accessible to those we interact with and continue to find ways to be as transparent as possible.”