Cathy Hardin-Harrison

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January First Marks Historic Day in Miller County, Arkansas

Cathy Hardin-Harrison

Tuesday morning will bring in January first of a New Year and it will also mark a historic event in Miller County, Arkansas.  There has been a lot of talk about the new County Judge, Cathy Hardin-Harrison.  She will be the first female County Judge in Miller County, but there is much more going on for the county history.  The county will have a first-ever female County Judge and it will see a Courthouse with all major positions held by women for the first time in history.  The Tax Collector, Assessor, Treasurer, County Clerk, and Circuit Clerk will all have positions filled by women.  On a county level, only the Sheriff and the Coroner offices will be held by men.  As far as the day-to-day operations at the Miller County Courthouse go, women will be running each office held. 

The swearing in ceremony will be held at the Miller County Courthouse, on the second floor at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday.  While the Courthouse and offices are closed for the holiday, elected officials are expected to be sworn in during the first day of the new year.  Some judges have chosen to be sworn in earlier so they can conduct the ceremony for the County Judge and other major officials for the county.  It is currently unclear if the Sheriff will be sworn in at the Courthouse or not, but major courthouse held offices will start the process at 10:00 a.m.  With the historic event, those wishing to attend should arrive early. An interesting side note to the fact that the county will have the first female county judge is the fact that all major offices in the county will be held by Republican representatives.  Until January 1, the office of Assessor has been held by an appointed person since the retirement of Democrat Mary Stuart.    As of January 1, Miller County will also be served by nine Republican Justices of the Peace (JP), one Democrat JP and one Independent JP.  It is the first time so many Republicans have held major offices in the county since Reconstruction. 

For those unable to attend the ceremony Tuesday, you may also catch it live-streamed on the Facebook Page “The ‘Whose Who’ of Our Miller County”. The page is maintained as a community service by Ronnie Dancer, Sr. of Fouke, Arkansas. The last election cycle, candidates and outcomes, may be viewed online at Election Cycle 2018. Continue Reading →

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Cathy Hardin-Harrison Announces Bid for Miller County Judge

Miller County, AR-Cathy Hardin-Harrison would like to announce her candidacy for Miller County Judge.  Cathy will run for Miller County Judge in the 2018 election primary as a Republican.  She has served Miller County as the Miller County Tax Collector for two terms.

Hardin-Harrison has overseen improvements in the Tax Collector’s office including an increase in collected taxes, and corrected tax issues.  She has overseen some of the largest returns in revenue in the county’s history and improved the accuracy and accessibility of the Tax office through an online site with options to pay taxes online in addition to traditional mail and paying in person. On August 30, Cathy made the formal announcement on her Facebook site (https://www.facebook.com/Cathy-Hardin-Harrison-for-Miller-County-Judge-1721149251521021/ )  She stated that a lot of consideration and prayer went into the decision and it was not a decision she took lightly.  Hardin-Harrison listened to voters, friends, family and discussed the office with her husband.  Cathy said, “This is the first four-year term for a county judge in the state’s history.”  She feels strongly that this person has to be a strong, open-minded, and forward-thinking leader.  Hardin-Harrison noted that when she came into the Tax Collector’s office there was not a positive atmosphere.  The office had just come through questionable legal issues and people were simply unsure what the future would hold for the Tax Collector’s office.  When she decided to run for that office, she wanted to make a difference, clean up the office and get it back on track for Miller County.  Hardin-Harrison says the office is now on track and moving in the right direction.  She feels it’s time to move that positive momentum over to the office of County Judge. Cathy Hardin-Harrison has lived in Fouke and Texarkana.  She is the wife of Texarkana Police Chief Robert “Bob” Harrison.  She notes that “Bob,” her family, and friends have been supportive of the decision, but that she has been really surprised by the overwhelming support and positive comments she has heard from the public.   “People come up to me and say such kind and wonderful things about my decision.  It’s humbling to know the people of Miller County have such a positive outlook on this campaign and I’m excited to move in this direction,” said Cathy Hardin-Harrison. Continue Reading →

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Miller County Delinquent Business Tax List Hits Social Media

Miller County, AR – Some are calling it “Public Shaming,” but for the Miller County Tax Collector, she is calling it “Public Accountability.”  What is that “Public Accountability”?  It’s a list of  over $200,000 of taxes owed to the county that is hitting social media today.  Several media outlets have already published the list.  Most of the responses from the public have been supportive so far; however, there have been a few that prefer to call it all “Public Shaming” and feel that it should not have been done. Continue Reading →

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Miller County Receives “Turnback” Check From Arkansas

Miller County, AR- When land and/or homes in a county go tax delinquent it cuts into funds needed for the county to operate efficiently.  Money that would normally go for schools, county pay raises, road improvements, sheriff patrols and many other areas needed stops when a land or home owner does not to pay the taxes.  There can be any number of reasons that an owner may not pay, but regardless of the reason, it affects everyone in the county.  When an owner does not pay the taxes, they become delinquent and eventually the County Tax Collector must certify the property and send it to the State Land Commissioner.  Once there additional attempts are made to collect the taxes, fines and other penalties.  If the State Land Commissioner can not collect, the property goes to auction.  The auction recovers the taxes, fines and fees from bidders.  If the property has multiple bidders, an overage is created.  After four years on the books, that overage, called “Turnback” and is sent back to the county. Today State Land Commissioner John Thurston came to Texarkana and presented the check for the Miller County Turnback.   Today’s check brought a Turnback, or overage, of $338,839.  This means that not only did the county receive the delinquent tax funds, but it also received the money from the auction in the form of the Turnback. While the state conducted the sales, the bottom line is Miller County would never have seen this Turnback without the work of Cathy Hardin-Harrison, the County Tax Collector, and her staff at the county.    Cathy’s office maintains the records, reviews the tax rolls, and certifies the delinquent taxes before turning them over to the state.  Without this operation, not only would Miller County be missing delinquent taxes, but the county would never have seen a Turnback check.  Today a few pictures were posted on Facebook about the check and the Turnback, but the citizens of Miller County deserve to know that those funds came to the county only through the hard work of the Tax Collector’s staff and Cathy Hardin-Harrison. Continue Reading →

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