By KEVIN NEVERS
In the general election on Tuesday, Nov. 2, Democrat Debby Dean Malik and
Republican Jon Miller will vie for the office of Porter County Recorder. The
Chesterton Tribune invited both to respond to candidate
The Tribune set word limits for each question and reserved the right
to edit for length.
(1) Age, place of residence, occupation.
Malik: 49, Hebron, certified deputy recorder.
Miller: 53, Chesterton, computer network administrator for the Porter
County Sheriffís Police and C-Comm 911.
(2) Describe the Porter County Recorderís responsibilities. (75 words)
Malik: To record and preserve the County Archives.
Miller: The recorder was the first constitutional
office in county government in Indiana. The County Recorder's function and
responsibility is to maintain permanent public records of legal instruments
involving real estate, deeds, mortgages, liens, leases, plats, military
discharges, personal bonds, and several others. All of these instruments are
recorded for safekeeping and future reference and for giving legal notice of
their existence. Storage methods to record these documents include paper,
microfilm, and digital management storage systems.
(3) What are your qualifications for the office? (75 words)
Malik: Six years as a certified deputy recorder, experienced in both the
clerkís and assessorís offices, precinct committeeman, and state delegate. I
am awarded by the vice president of the Indiana Recorderís Association.
Miller: Maintaining the current document
management system is an essential function of the Recorderís office. I have
administered a comparable system for 10 years.
I have been engaged in the evolution of the management of vital record
storage. In 2001 we required a storage solution for our cumbersome manual
filing systems. I administered the implementation of our first and current
document imaging management system. I have acquired management skills
through my workplace and community organizations.
(4) Why are you seeking election to the office? (75 words)
Malik: To bring my experience and qualifications to Porter County.
Miller: My life has been dedicated to service,
which is evident by my employment history (27 years to Porter County) and my
community involvement. The Recorder provides a great service by ensuring
that their records will always be available to taxpayers. People are my
(5) Differentiate yourself from your opponent and indicate why you believe
yourself a better candidate. (125 words)
Malik: I have more experience and I am better qualified than my
Miller: Quality public service is essential to any
office. Porter County deserves quality leadership in this office; I can
provide that. Honesty, integrity, and commitment are values that I live by.
(6) What are the key issues in the race? (125 words)
Malik: Fiscal responsibility, and to provide Porter County jobs. To keep
Miller: The Recorder must verify that documents
submitted for recording meet requirements and follow the fee schedule that
are both mandated by the state. The preservation of records for public
access is a responsibility that has a direct impact on the ability of
employers and private citizens alike to conduct business and complete
transactions. Experience in record management is essential for the
The Recorder must possess the ability to provide the staff with the best
tools to help them perform their jobs and serve the public. The present
level of customer service is excellent. I will maintain that level, although
Iíd like to improve service by employing advancements and innovations when
My goals include a user-friendly website and implementing e-Government
(7) If elected, do you anticipate making staff changes in the Recorderís
Office. Why or why not? (50 words)
Malik: No. Everyone, Republican or Democrat, needs their job.
Miller: I donít anticipate making any staffing
changes within the office other than appointing a new chief deputy from
within the current ranks, while adhering to the County policy for employment
procedures. All of the members of the current staff are well trained and
very good public servants.
(8) Do you regularly attend meetings of the Porter County Council and Porter
County Commissioners? Why or why not? (50 words)
Malik: Occasionally when necessary.
Miller: I attend meetings held by both governing
bodies when able. I have been attending the budget meetings most recently,
specifically focusing on those related to the Recorderís office. I believe
that it is my duty to be an active citizen in my community, participating
whenever Iím able to be helpful.