Snow greeted Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams one week ago when he drove to Telluride to meet with San Miguel County Clerk Kathleen Erie.
The visit was one of nine face-to-face encounters with county clerks in a four-day span, primarily in southwestern Colorado. (Six other blogs follow details encounters with the clerks.)
Erie called Williams a “good partner” and said afterward she was glad to talk to him to get an understanding of some of legislation the secretary is backing in the Colorado General Assembly.
The original San Miguel Courthouse burned down and bricks that were salvaged were used to build the new courthouse, which opened in 1888. Like some other older courthouses, what was once the jail is now a storage area for the clerk. The voter service and polling center used during elections is another county building 150 feet down the street.
Throughout the courthouse were signs that read “Happy Birthday, Jessie,” referring to staffer Jessie McConnell, who handles elections and vital records.
“In some bigger counties, vital records are handled by their health departments but we do it in San Miguel,” Erie said, adding that clerks end up seeing an array of operations, an observation made by other county clerks, too.
Erie won her first primary for clerk in 2010 by a mere 20 votes, but won the general election by 650 votes. She pointed out the county is heavily Democratic. Unlike some of her peers, Erie didn’t work her way up in the clerk’s office. She was a certified public accountant.
Williams also visited the Telluride Daily Planet while in town.