Unique appraisal partnership formed in Camden

By Stephanie Grinnell | Apr 18, 2014
Source: townhallstreams.com screen capture Kerry Leichtman and Jim Murphy have been hired by Camden Selectmen as joint assessors for sixth months while the town works through the hiring process.

Camden — With the retirement of Wes Robinson as town assessors' agent, Camden officials decided to approach bridging the months until a new agent is hired in a unique way: by hiring two people.

Rockport Assessor Kerry Leichtman and Jim Murphy of Murphy Appraisal Services were approved as a partnership during the select board meeting April 15.

"It's unusual but I think they are the right people to make it work," Town Manager Patricia Finnigan said of Leichtman and Murphy.

The town has agreed to a six-month contract with Murphy Appraisal Services while Leichtman will be considered a part-time Camden employee, according to Finnigan. As the two work, Finnigan will develop a job description in anticipation of hiring an in-house or contracted assessor's agent.

"This gives us fresh eyes to look at how we do things," Finnigan said. " ... and to partner with Rockport is a good thing."

Camden uses two programs — Trio Real Estate software and Vision Appraisal — for collecting assessing data, billing and other tasks. Murphy is familiar with the Trio software, while Leichtman has experience with Vision.

"We will prioritize what need to be done," Murphy said, adding both men work full-time elsewhere. "We will just make it happen for Camden. ... Between the two of us, we will be able to get good eyes on it."

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Stephanie Grinnell
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Stephanie is editor of The Republican Journal in Belfast. She previously served as editor of Camden Herald following its return in April 2012.

Stephanie also was editor of VillageSoup's Capital Weekly in Augusta and has nearly a decade of experience in the newspaper business ranging from southern and central Maine to Waldo County.

Outside the office, she enjoys reading, cooking and gardening.

Stephanie lives in Washington with her husband Jeff, four children, a dog named Chewbacca, a rabbit and chickens.

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