Sunday, June 17, 2018
News Roundup

Pinellas Property Appraiser Pam Dubov says she won't seek reelection in 2016

CLEARWATER — Pinellas County Property Appraiser Pam Dubov says she loves her job and looks forward to the second half of her second term.

After that, she plans to focus on a higher calling.

Dubov, 58, confirmed Friday that she will not seek reelection in 2016. She has already started the lengthy process to be ordained as a deacon in the United Methodist Church.

"While I'm still young enough, I'd like to have one more season in a different vocation," she said.

The decision means Dubov, a former U.S. Army captain who joined the Property Appraiser's office in 1989, will walk away from a well-paying job that likely would have been hers to lose.

She was elected in 2008 after scandal ended the career of her predecessor Jim Smith, who made a private deal to sell his flood-prone lot to the county government for almost four times the appraised value his own staff gave it. Dubov was Smith's chief deputy at the time and, after learning by chance about the deal, tried to talk Smith out of it.

She is credited with restoring trust in the office and steering it through the Great Recession, doing the sometimes controversial work of setting property values in a devastated real estate market, and with a shrinking staff.

She went uncontested in the 2012 election. Her current salary is $154,653.

Dubov's departure will be a "huge loss," said County Commissioner Susan Latvala, a fellow Republican and friend. "She's incredibly knowledgeable, well-respected around the state and she does her job well."

Dubov is currently taking graduate-level theology courses, mostly online and some on the weekends at Asbury Theological in Orlando. Once ordained, she wants to use her knowledge of Pinellas County's people and programs to advocate for the needy here, with a focus on children and veterans.

She acknowledged that could change.

"When you get called to the ministry," she said, "sometimes God has plans that we don't know."

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