Tacoma Urbanist

Nov. 11, 2010 at 12:01am

It's Official: Tim Farrell to Oppose Washam for Assessor-Treasurer in 2012

Tim Farrell will run against Dale Washam for Pierce County Treasurer-Assessor in 2012 

According the PDC, Farrell filed the following C1 form on 11/8/2010:

Farrell is currently serving on the Pierce County Council.

See the Tacoma Sun for interview Farrell gave which was published in October 2008.

The debates between Farrell and Washam should be interesting. 

As a side note, both candidates have long been subjects of RR Anderson's Tacomics.

comments [43]  |  posted under tacoma


by Erik on 11/11/2010 @ 12:22am
Bonus pictures:

by Erik on 11/11/2010 @ 12:27am
At Frost park in early 2008:

by Erik on 11/11/2010 @ 12:29am
At the iconic Blackwater:

by panachronic on 11/11/2010 @ 2:31am
He sure looks like a shoo-in at this point, doesn't he? Of course, he probably isn't the only local politician who recognizes that the P.C. auditor position is up for grabs next time around.

by cisserosmiley on 11/11/2010 @ 5:19am
It is Ass...essor that TF is a "shoo-in" for not Auditor.

by NineInchNachos on 11/11/2010 @ 7:55am
Dear Sheeple, I wouldn't count out Uncle Dale Washam; after all, GOD is on his side! And the whole petition for recall of Mark Lindquist is so crazy it just might work. Will Tim Farrell fight for our "Freedom" I wonder?


Now about that 10 year backlog of faked/falsified/fraudulent property inspections....

by NineInchNachos on 11/11/2010 @ 7:56am
Also how much does it co$t to apply for that position?

by fredo on 11/11/2010 @ 8:10am
nachos, agree with your comment. even though dale gets a lot of bad press I'm not so sure he doesn't have a wildly supportive constituency. Madsens office staff probably should have taken jobs in the private sector. they really don't fit in with washam's style IMO.

by Erik on 11/11/2010 @ 12:04pm
"Also how much does it cost to apply for that position?"

I think it is one percent of the salary of the position.

The Assessor made around 100k in 2006. Thus, I would cost you over $1000 to run if I have the rule right.

by Erik on 11/11/2010 @ 12:05pm
@RR: Looking forward to you bring two Tacomic figures from two different worlds together for battle.

by cisserosmiley on 11/11/2010 @ 1:50pm
the tacoma progressive club pledges the admission price for assessor pagent for one local political cartoonists...any applications?

by NineInchNachos on 11/11/2010 @ 1:57pm
$1000 is too rich for my blood.

by fredo on 11/11/2010 @ 3:13pm
Well, farrell has two things that Dale Washam has: a nice sports coat and a good fitting hairpiece.

by Erik on 11/18/2010 @ 5:29pm
Update in the Tacoma Weekly:


by Jesse on 11/18/2010 @ 6:24pm
Isn't Farrell the guy who was the port commissioner who blew $185 million on land and a dock without an iron-clad lease?

by Erik on 11/18/2010 @ 6:32pm
@Jesse: nope. Without commenting on the merits of your statement, that is another guy. The Tim Farrell is on the Pierce County Council.

by fredo on 11/18/2010 @ 6:34pm
Jesse, can you provide proof of this?

I'm pretty sure someone running for an office held in succession by a crook and a crackpot would have be squeeky clean.

by fredo on 11/18/2010 @ 6:44pm
I googled this name and found what appears to be 2 local politicians with exactly the same name. The guy from the port of Tacoma doesn't look anything like the Tim Farrell in this posting.

by Jesse on 11/18/2010 @ 7:29pm
"I googled this name and found what appears to be 2 local politicians with exactly the same name." -- Fredo

That's why I stated it as a question and not a statement. I truely wasn't sure.

by Crenshaw Sepulveda on 11/18/2010 @ 7:54pm
I had the same problem with another guy named Crenshaw Sepulveda.

by fredo on 11/18/2010 @ 8:58pm
"Tim Farrell will run against Dale Washam for Pierce County Treasurer-Assessor in 2012" urbanist

does this mean that Washam has also announced his intention to run for the office in 2012?

by tacoma1 on 11/18/2010 @ 9:13pm
I'm pretty sure that if I ran my labrador against Washam, that my dog would win. Besides, my dog would save the taxpayers money since he can easily shred papers with his teeth. No electricity needed to power paper shredders 'round the clock.

by morgan on 11/18/2010 @ 9:25pm
tacoma1: does your dog have $1,000 in order to file?

My question is: What will Will Baker do?

by tacoma1 on 11/18/2010 @ 9:53pm
No, my dog doesn't have $1,000 dollars to file, but he can howl at the moon really well. That's a skill that the voters must have been looking for when Washam got elected.

by fredo on 11/18/2010 @ 10:17pm
Prior to being elected to the County Council, Farrell was chief of staff to state Sen. Jim Kastama (D-Puyallup) in Olympia. He holds a master's degree in business administration from California Polytechnic University in San-Luis Obispo, Calif. His council priorities include maintaining our social-services network, farmland preservation and economic development. (biography)

In other words, he has no background in property assessment.

by tacoma1 on 11/18/2010 @ 10:55pm
Fredo, I think that the assessor is supposed to be more of an administrator than a real estate appraiser. I think that he/she actually has staff to do the appraisals (assuming they all don't quit or jump from a bridge while under Washam's reign of terror.

That being said, my dog is really good at assessing the best part of my yard to dig a hole and do his business. Maybe I should loan the mutt the filing fee afterall.

by Erik on 11/18/2010 @ 11:09pm
An MBA is far more education that most politicians have.

BTW, one can gather signatures in lieu of the filing fee.

by fredo on 11/19/2010 @ 12:21am
An MBA is far more education that most politicians have

A masters degree is only 2 years more than a bachelors degree. how can it be far more than most politicians have? I think I would prefer someone with several years in property tax assessment in addition to an advanced degree.

If this discussion hasn't served anyother purpose at least it's illuminated one thing: tacoma1's dog and tim farrell share one common trait. neither one has any experience in tax assessment.

by captiveyak on 11/19/2010 @ 7:25am
Tacoma1 is right. The Assessor role is broadly administrative. A county council position is very adequate and applicable preparatory experience. In my line of work, I use PC assessor data almost every day and am very familiar with the range of functions administered by that office. One must have just as much background in mapping, public lands, right of way law, subdivision law, GIS technology, database management, online access formats, etc... as they ought to in tax assessment. As far as online services go, Pierce County made a lot of headway prior to Washam's tenure, but has really started falling behind in comparison to surrounding counties. This is a key part of keeping public documents truly public.

by captiveyak on 11/19/2010 @ 7:30am
To be quite honest. county assessor would be a fun and fascinating job. I'd be tempted to run except that what little name recognition I have is entirely unserious AND i'd not stand a chance against Farrell -- nor would i want to. Everything I've heard about him is resoundingly positive.

by ixia on 11/19/2010 @ 7:38am
Amazing how people don't know their own county council, yet quickly and ignorantly pass judgment. I am not saying I am surprised.

by fredo on 11/19/2010 @ 8:03am
I'm not even remotely surprised that people might think Tim Farrell and Tim Farrell are the same person. Sorry if you're incapable of seeing the source of confusion is the fact that both gentlemen share the same trade, the same locality, and the same name.

IMO the next PC Assessor is going to have to be strong in all areas. The public is going to want strong administrative skills, strong academic skills and strong assessor skills. Perhaps Farrell will be good and considering the last two assessors he couldn't be any worse, but I think taxpayers are going to demand and deserve the very best they can get.

by ixia on 11/19/2010 @ 8:35am
demand and deserve the very best they can get
By voting against their own interest, what they demand is outstripping what is possible. There might come a point when they deserve reality, but it appears we are not there yet.

by Jesse on 11/19/2010 @ 8:39am
"Amazing how people don't know their own county council, yet quickly and ignorantly pass judgment. I am not saying I am surprised." --- ixia

I personally don't follow the county council because I view them as more of a pro-sprawl semi-conservative bunch who don't necessarily value the worth of a strong downtown Tacoma but rather concentrate on places like Puyallup instead. So no, I don't know the county council members names personally. What I've read about them has caused a bit of frustration for me so I stopped following them almost right away.

by KevinFreitas on 11/19/2010 @ 8:39am
@fredo: Most people don't know what the heck "assessor skillz" would even be. Care to define so the rest of us can make quality judgements?

Knowledge/experience in a particular field is a great thing to have in a publicly held office. But so is honesty and heart. Those qualities are easily top of my list because that means they'll work hard and do the best job they can for the people they serve. Tim Farrell, in my various times running into him around town, has that and more. He cares deeply about this area and isn't afraid to fight for us.

by ixia on 11/19/2010 @ 8:57am
Jesse, you can find Tim at a great many cultural and environmental events all over Tacoma. If you see him around, say hello. It's worth it.

by captiveyak on 11/19/2010 @ 9:01am
@kevin The assessor's office must track value matrices, zoning designations, municipal tax codes and property improvement data for each parcel in Pierce County to set property tax and excise tax levels. That part is really rather formulaic. Whenever there is a property transaction or grant of any kind (easement, lease, agreement, etc) ther document is recorded with the Auditor. The Assessor must link that document to the properties involved so that there is a clear chain of title on the subject lot -- basically keeping a record of all rights and ownerships associated with every parcel in the County. The assessor's office also manages a huge interactive map database that essentially shows every mappable legal feature in the county - every road right of way, every easement, every property line and lot line adjustment. This database is linked to the property assessment database, but not yet to the Auditor's database. This is one huge improvement that needs to be made.

by thriceallamerican on 11/19/2010 @ 9:27am
Jesse brings up some good points about the council in relation to Tacoma. I'm pretty familiar with who the council reps are (in part because my spouse works for the county) and there is definitely a huge conservative lean that I don't think represents the overall political split of the county population very well. Tim Farrell's a good guy, but unfortunately the Republican majority of the council makes it pretty difficult for him to wield any sort of political sway, forcing him to compromise in ways that end up under-representing what a lot of Tacomans would consider in the best interests of the county as a whole. I personally would like to see future council redistricting/realignment add some at-large positions that would represent the voting interests of the whole county, helping to dilute the influence of the backwoods districts that elect crazies like Roger Bush. (Yes, I just went there.)

by fredo on 11/19/2010 @ 11:25am
"Most people don't know what the heck "assessor skillz" would even be. Care to define so the rest of us can make quality judgements?"

Sure. The ideal candidate for this job, which carries with it incredible responsibilities and a high salary to match, would have an advanced degree in business or public administration, some relevant private sector experience, experience in assessment and/or treasurer offices including perhaps certifications as a CRT (certified treasury professional) and Assessor / Appraiser certifications.

Certainly we have elected candidates to this office with much less than what I have prescribed. Those voters who like office holders such as Ken Madsen and Dale Washam should continue to select candidates by superficial criteria.

I'm not posting anything negative about Mr. Farrell. So far, he looks like the front runner but the election is 2 years away. It is likely that other candidates will submit their names. What is gained by rushing to judgement?

by cisserosmiley on 11/23/2010 @ 9:21pm
the assessor's office needs an operational update. first, they charge a massive "fee" to pay your taxes online. i always thought this would be less expensive without the envelope opening, check endorsing, trip to the bank for depositing...
Mr. Farrel, Mr. Washam, Mr. RR Anderson...whoever wins the assessor pagent, can we not charge an online payment fee?

by NineInchNachos on 11/23/2010 @ 11:16pm
If elected I pledge to offer a tax-credit discount to people who file online. 0% down for first 6 months!

by fredo on 12/25/2010 @ 4:33pm
Tim Farrell wants to be elected as our County Assessor? Well lets see if he's had any problems showing up for work at the job he's currently elected to perform:

"For Pierce County Council members, conducting a legally mandated meeting when you’d really rather be on Christmas break looks like this:

You publish an agenda with no action items. Only chairman Roger Bush shows up to convene the regularly scheduled session. As the clerk calls the roll, Bush excuses every council member but himself. Shawn Bunney, excused; Tim Farrell, excused; Dick Muri, excused; Joyce McDonald, excused; Barbara Gelman, excused; Terry Lee, excused."

Read more: www.thenewstribune.com/2010/12/24/147725...

Why should the voters assume mr. farrell will take the assessor's job any more seriously than he takes his council job?

by Erik on 3/1/2011 @ 4:06pm
Now reported on in the Tribune!!