The Office of the county assessor is primarily concerned with determining equitable values on both real and personal property for tax purposes (§63-207, I.C.). However, the office has one other function that is detailed and time-consuming. The assessor acts as the agent of the Department of Idaho Transportation in titling and registering vehicles (§§49-401A, 49 to 501, I.C.). The law also provides that if the governor thinks it is necessary to call up a militia, he may order the assessor to carry out a registration of all county residents liable for such service (§46-104, I.C.).
Terms of Office
The voters elect the county assessor for a term of four years (Article 18, Section 6, Idaho Constitution). Candidates for the office are nominated at primary elections. However, if the county chooses an optional form of county government, the structure of the assessor's office could change. Possible changes are changing the term of office, appointing an individual to the office, or eliminating the office and having the duties and responsibilities performed by other elected officers or appointed persons (Title 31, Chapters 52 to 56, I.C.). The County Commissioners determine the assessor's salary in each county (§31-816, I.C.).
Deputy & Assistant Appointments
The assessor is empowered to appoint deputies and clerical assistants (§31-2003, I.C.). The compensation of theses deputies and assistants is determined by the county budget approved by the county commissioners. When there is more than one deputy in an office, one must be designated as the senior deputy at the time of appointment. The senior deputy then acts for the assessor when absent or in any way incapacitated (§31-2006, I.C.). All deputies and clerks must also take and file an official oath before performing their duties (§59-406, I.C.). The assessor is sworn into office on the second Monday in January (§59-404, I.C.). Appointments of deputies must be documented (§31-2007, I.C.), and the oath of office and the appointment form are customarily joined together into one legal document for filing.
The assessor is required to furnish a bond for the performance of his/her duties (§31-2015, I.C.). The county furnishes such bond. However, since this office is also involved in selling vehicle licenses, the county commissioners may require an additional amount for this function. The bond limit is not more than $50,000 for license collectors (§31-2015, I.C.).