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3 candidates for Register of Deeds vie for Republican nomination

September 05, 2012
COOS COUNTY — Three candidates, all of whom have worked extensively with computers, are running for the Republican nomination to become the county's next Register of Deeds, heading up a four-and-a-half person office on the first floor of the Superior Court House in Lancaster. All employees in the Deeds office are cross-trained to do one another's jobs.

The state's Primary Day is on Tuesday, Sept. 11.

Tanya Batchelder of Lancaster, who graduated in 1973 from WMRHS, has worked in the Deeds office for 12 years under current Register Carol Lamirande of Gorham, who is retiring when her term is up. "I'm the only candidate who is ready to go, starting on Day 1," Batchelder said in a Wednesday afternoon interview. "Not that I would stand pat; of course, you always have to be ready for changes and improvements."

Batchelder explained that if she were elected Register, she would reevaluate the number of employees in the Deeds office. The Department's only part-time worker is retiring in another year, she explained, and it could well be that that position could be eliminated, at least while house and land sales remain depressed. Batchelder said that although one of the state's 10 counties does offer online e-filing, she believes that it would be essential to monitor this approach to ensure that this would be a prudent step that is in everyone's best interest.

Denise Fortin of Gorham, a native of Berlin who graduated in 1971 from Notre Dame High School, has worked for York Land Services LLC for many years, making her familiar with the grantor and grantee process, that is needed for indexing plans and deeds for research on the Registry's website. Fortin said in a Wednesday evening interview that writing deed descriptions, copying large survey plans, and her familiarity with accounting and bookkeeping processes have prepared her for the Register's duties.

"I feel I have much of the needed experience for this position, and I love the challenge of learning new things," she said in a prepared statement. "I strive to do my best at any job or chore that I do, and, if elected for this position, I will do my best to serve the people of Coös County in helping to run an efficient office with accurate and protected information."

Mike Neil, a Berlin native who graduated in 1967 from BHS and had a 20-year career (1969 to 1989) in the Navy. Neil rose from being an enlisted man to becoming a lieutenant and also earned a B. S. in education at Southern Illinois University, he said in a Wednesday morning interview. "I have the background, training, and experience to fill what is an elected technical and leadership position," Neil said, adding that he had been a computer technician on nuclear-powered submarines using software with complex algorithms. If elected, he pledged that he would undertake an in-depth analysis of the Registry's staffing and offices practices and procedures in an effort to safe taxpayers' money and enhance constituent service."

Neil said that since he retired from the Navy he worked as executive director for several nonprofits, including the former White Mountains Chamber of Commerce in Berlin. He works as an LNA at both nursing homes in Berlin and also a substitute teacher in the Berlin, Gorham and Milan schools.

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