JULY 21, 2009 – One word accurately sums up V. Edwin Stoll’s main objective in his new role as Jackson County’s Director of Collections: Fairness.
“It's important for taxpayers to know we are going to treat them fairly,” said Stoll, less than three hours into his first day on the job in the Collections Department Monday, July 20.
With a 30-year law practice focusing mostly on tax-related cases and real estate transactions, Stoll brings decades of experience to Jackson County Government. He earned his law degree in 1979 from the University of Missouri-Columbia, where, three years earlier, he received his bachelor’s in Business Administration. As an undergraduate he played basketball for legendary Missouri coach Norm Stewart, winning a letter during the Tigers’ 1976 Big Eight championship season.
“My undergraduate business degree made tax law a natural fit for me in law school,” Stoll said. “My practice was in large part about taxes, handling income, estate, excise, employment and property tax disputes and resolutions, as well as tax planning. In the mid-1980s, my practice expanded to asl include real estate matters, including developments and other transactions.”
Stoll, a Lee’s Summit, Missouri, resident, was a partner with Stinson Morrison Hecker LLP from 2002-09. He assumes his new duties with the County after serving this year as Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Providence Business Group Inc.
“He has the expertise we were seeking in a Collections Director,” said County Executive Mike Sanders. “He brings decades of experience to the County and is committed to adding to the professionalism of our Collections Department. He already has a long record of public service to his community, Jackson County and the State of Missouri.”
During his career, Stoll has served on numerous boards, commissions and committees, including the Board of Education of Consolidated School District No. 2 in Jackson County (1996-99); the Missouri Development Finance Board (1992-96); the Missouri Housing Development Commission (1987-91 including a ’90-91 term as chairman); the Desegregation Monitoring Committee of the United States District Court, Western District of Missouri (1990-93); the Board of Directors of the National Conference of State Housing Boards (1990-91); and the Board of Directors of the Jackson County Historical Society (1989-94).
More recently, he has served on the Lee’s Summit Charter Review Commission (2006-07), and his association with the Boy Scouts of America-Heart of America Council dates back to 1998. Stoll currently serves as an assistant district commissioner for the council’s Thunderbird District.
“I’ve always been interested in public service,” Stoll said. “This position offers a unique opportunity to serve the people of Jackson County.”
Continuing efforts to keep the public informed about Collection’s responsibilities is a high priority for Stoll. For example, he believes it’s important for people to understand not all the tax revenue Collections collects is for Jackson County. On average, just seven cents of every dollar collected goes toward County government. (See “Where do my tax dollars go?” for more information.)
He also hopes to raise awareness about programs such as the Senior Quad Payment option, which allows taxpayers 62 or older to spread their property tax payments over four installments rather than one lump sum.
“I think it’s also important for people to know Assessment and Collections are two distinct departments,” Stoll said. “We have no say in assessing value. Assessment is tasked with fairly and accurately assessing real estate and personal property values. Collecting the taxes based on those assessed values is the Collection Department’s job. We’re going to do that job as fairly as possible. We want it to be as fair a process as possible.”