Kayla Meise PhotoKayla Meise, 
Adams County Treasurer

About the Treasurer's Office

The county treasurer holds a key position of public trust in the financial affairs of local government. Acting as the bank for the county, school districts, fire districts, water districts, and other local government units, the treasurer's office receipts disburses, invests, and accounts for the funds of each of these entities. In addition, the treasurer is charged with collecting taxes that benefit various governmental units. Over sixty percent of the workload of the county treasurer is directed toward providing services to the taxing districts.


The major responsibilities of the county treasurer can be summarized in the following areas:

  • Receipting and accounting of revenue
  • Collection of taxes and assessments
  • Disbursement of funds
  • Cash and investment management
  • Debt management


As the depository for all funds, fees collected by other county offices and those collected by the various districts are forwarded to the treasurer for custody. State and federal monies allocated to local governments are transmitted to the treasurer and are deposited into the proper funds. Monthly reports are prepared to show each government unit's accounting transactions by fund.
Property taxes are a major source of revenue for local governments. Billed by the county treasurer, these taxes are collected and distributed to the various state, school, county, city, and district funds levied.
The county treasurer also bills and collects special assessments authorized by voters to fund improvements or to provide a specific service to property owners within a district.
In addition, the county treasurer acts as an agent for the Washington State Department of Revenue to administer and collect the real estate excise tax on the conveyance of real property. These taxes, which help fund the state public school system and local government capital improvements, are paid by the seller as a percentage of the sale price.


Upon receipt of the tax and assessment rolls from the county assessor and the various assessment districts, the treasurer prepares statements of real and personal property taxes and assessments due. These taxes and assessments are due and payable once the treasurer has completed the tax roll for the current year's collection and provided notification of the completion of the roll. The tax statement is sent to all taxpayers with the full amount due by April 30. However, if the amount payable is over $50, one-half may be paid on or before April 30, with the second half due on or before October 31. 
Collection provisions in the law direct the treasurer to seize and sell personal property when those taxes become delinquent. The real property statutes require foreclosure action when those taxes and assessments are delinquent for three years. If those taxes, assessments, and interest and penalties are not satisfied, the property is sold at a public auction. 


The treasurer redeems all school, county, and district warrants from monies available in the fund upon which they were drawn. If a fund has insufficient monies, each warrant is registered, and interest charges begin to accrue. Then, as monies become available, those warrants are called for redemption in the order of their issuance.


The treasurer performs cash management and banking services for the county, school, fire, port, cemetery, library districts, and other government agencies. The cash needs of each fund are determined daily.   The treasurer invests funds not needed for immediate expenditures for the county and the districts by their investment policy.

The treasurer administers short-term and long-term debt financing. The treasurer facilitates bond sales authorized by the county, school, or other local districts. A detailed record is kept of every bond and an entry on the bond register shows each bond and coupon payment.

The treasurer also administers the sale of county surplus items, such as sheriff's cars and county road equipment, at public auction. In addition, any unclaimed money or property found upon a deceased person is delivered to the treasurer by the coroner or medical examiner for safekeeping.

The county treasurer's duties are many and varied and require efficient and reliable handling of public funds. With responsibilities extending beyond the scope of county operations, the county treasurer plays a key fiduciary role in the operation of local government.

The county treasurer adds value to the taxing districts and citizens by providing:

  • Efficiency and expertise in providing countywide treasury services
  • Centralized revenue collection
  • Reduction in local government financial service costs to county taxpayers
  • Consolidated investment service
  • Reduction in banking service costs
  • Additional internal controls
  • Financial analysis expertise
  • Assistance in revenue projections and debt service payments

Office Hours: Monday - Friday 8:30 am-12:00 pm 1:00pm-4:30 pm

Phone: 509-659-3227

210 W Broadway Suite 203
Ritzville, WA 99169