New Athens County Treasurer Starts Job This Week

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When Bill Bias reported for work Tuesday, it was as Athens County’s new treasurer, although he’s had several months to prepare for the role.

Bias was elected treasurer in last November’s general election, but under Ohio law the term does not begin until September. Bias sought the post after long-time treasurer JaVon Kittle Cooper announced she would not seek re-election.

“JaVon has been incredibly gracious to allow me since January to spend a lot of time in the office,” Bias said Tuesday. That allowed him time to learn about the operations of the office, and Bias said he also attended about a week’s worth of classes at various locations in the state.

Bias served as treasurer of the city of Athens for four years, beginning in 1989.

Although both jobs involve the investment of public funds, the county treasurer also reconciles bank statements and sends out the real estate and mobile home tax bills, Bias said.

“It is very different,” Bias said of the county treasurer post.

He said he doesn’t plan on changing who works in the office, explaining, “I am very pleased with the people who work there.”

One thing he said he wants to explore is setting up a system for people to use credit or debit cards to pay their tax bills.

Although Kittle Cooper’s term officially ends Wednesday, Sept. 4, she resigned effective at the end of last week due to considerations with her retirement. The county commissioners appointed Bias to fill the position until the term officially begins. With Monday being a holiday,, Tuesday was his first day on the job.

“I would like to say that the citizens of Athens County have been extremely well-served by having JaVon as treasurer the past 17 years” Bias said.