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County treasurer resigns

Citing the pressures and stress of the job, Pierce County's new treasurer has announced her resignation.

Paula Knutson, who took office in January, will leave the post Oct. 31.

State law gives the county board the authority to either call a special election or appoint someone to fill out the term, which expires at the end of 2008.

County Board Chairman Paul Barkla said the county will immediately begin seeking applications from people interested in filling out Knutson's term. Applicants are asked to submit a letter of intent and resume by 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10.

Knutson, 35, was one of four candidates for the position last year after former treasurer Lee Skog announced his retirement. She ran as a Democrat.

"I have enjoyed the opportunity and feel very fortunate to have served Pierce County," wrote Knutson in her letter of resignation.

"However, over the course of the year, it has become apparent to me that my future does not lie as treasurer of Pierce County."

Knutson was a certified public accountant in Minnesota and worked as a financial accountant, tax accountant and paralegal before being elected. She had not held elected office before.

She said her previous employer has offered her a new job. She intends to return to private sector work "with a promise of working more from home and an emphasis on estate planning matters."

Knutson said she decided several months ago she wouldn't seek a second term.

"Recently though," she wrote, "the pressures and stress inherent in the position of county treasurer have mounted and caused health problems."

She said she believes her resignation is in the best interest of herself, her family and the county.

"Please know that I had great expectations for the future for this position," wrote Knutson. "But expectations and reality do not always coincide."

The 2007 salary for the treasurer's position is $49,625. The 2008 salary will be $50,121.

The treasurer's primary duty is to collect property taxes and other money owed to the county and keep records of those collections. For a complete description of the duties under state law and other details, go to and click on "Employment."