New Clark County treasurer starts early as incumbent resigns
The incumbent Clark County treasurer who was defeated for a second term in an August primary election has left office sooner than expected. Mary Domanico resigned from her elected position on Nov. 16 about seven weeks before the end of her 4-year term, leaving the county to fill the position on an interim basis just as property tax bill work is in full swing.
Domanico cited COVID-19 health concerns as her reason for leaving soon, saying that she has been out of the office on quarantine for the past several weeks and is unsure when she may be able to return. Her resignation was received by county board Chairman Wayne Hendrickson on Nov. 16, and it was effective that day.
“This was a very hard decision for me to make,” Domanico said. “I took an oath of office in January 2017 to serve the citizens of Clark County. I have been out on quarantine since Oct. 29, 2020, due to COVID. I made the decision to resign my position, because of my oath to better serve the citizens of this county. The reason being is I have already been out since Oct. 29, and if I am symptomfree I can resume normal activities Nov. 23. Since I am not sure if I will be able to resume my normal activities Nov. 23, I felt the best way to keep my oath of office is to resign my position, so that the duties of the treasurer’s office can continue seamlessly.”
Domanico was elected to her first term as treasurer in November 2016. She ran for re-election this year, but was defeated in an August Republican Party primary by Renee Schoen, the property tax lister in the treasurer’s office. Schoen was then elected as treasurer in an uncontested general election on Nov. 3. Domanico’s term officially was to end on Jan. 4.
According to Clark County Attorney Jacob Brunette, the normal procedure in the event of a treasurer’s resignation is to appoint the deputy treasurer to the position. However, Domanico did not complete the formal process of naming a deputy, so none was available for appointment.
“That was not done for whatever reason,” Brunette said.
In the absence of a deputy, state statutes direct the county board of supervisors to then name a replacement. The board met in special session on Nov. 18 and appointed Schoen as interim treasurer until her 4-year term officially begins in January.
Brunette said the timing of Domanico’s departure is not ideal since all county property tax bills are being prepared for mailing in the next few weeks.
“There’s a lot going on in that office with taxes going out here shortly,” he said.
The treasurer’s office was recently the subject of an investigation. In August, the county board’s Executive Committee took action “to make a referral … to investigate the county treasurer’s office.” Also at that time, the Executive Committee passed a motion “to send a letter to the county treasurer indicating she cannot telecommute per county policy, and that records with confidential information cannot leave the courthouse per county policy,” according to Aug. 19 Executive Committee meeting minutes. Earlier at that meeting, Domanico spoke with the committee “to address some issues/concerns” and “informed the committee she has been working after hours and from home.”
At an Oct. 26 Executive Committee meeting, a report on the investigation was reviewed in closed executive session, and a motion was made and passed to “close the investigation” without any further action taken.