Telfer vies for Oregon treasurer

<I>Brian Addison/Chieftain</I><BR>State senator Chris Telfer, an accountant, speaks in Enterprise about her run for state treasurer.

State treasurer candidate Chris Telfer has a busy life as owner of an accounting firm and serving as an Oregon state senator, but stopped in Enterprise Saturday, Sept. 18.

Telfer currently serves as state senator for District 27 in central Oregon. The Bend resident owns an accounting firm and is the only accountant by profession to serve in the current state senate.

First, Telfer spoke of the role of Oregon state treasurer. "The state treasurer is supposed to be the chief financial officer of the state," said Telfer. She explained that the treasurer is one of three who sit on the state land board and control decisions over all state lands.

"I believe we'll have a Republican governor soon, and he needs another vote on the land board," Telfer told the small crowd.

Telfer reacts to the state's budget shortfalls with several ideas for cutting state spending. She recommends cuts to many state services and uses the department of Land Conservation and Development as an example of a program that should face funding cuts. "Let them live in the fee based world," said Telfer.

Telfer advocates for a change in the way the state funds education by changing statute from basing payments on a current services model to a performance based system.

The lack of transparency in the state's treasury department is identified by Telfer as one of the major problems with Oregon government and reminded voters that new transparency and ethic rules exclude the treasury department.

According to Telfer, it is difficult to get a full accounting of all fees collected by the state partially because those funds are deposited into about 130 different bank accounts. Accounting difficulties are compounded because the state doesn't release a monthly financial statement, said Telfer.

Making the state self-sufficient is another of the steps Telfer thinks Oregon should take. She wonders why the state goes outside to look for funding and why tax measures 66 and 67 were necessary when there is fee-generated money already sitting in state coffers.

Telfer calls out the incumbent state treasurer candidate Ted Wheeler for supporting state expenditures through bonding, calling her opponent a "figure head doing nothing."

If elected, Telfer hopes to work with the governor to bring more wood off state timberlands to use toward local funding of schools and roads and promises her continued support of private property rights.

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