Longtime Carroll County Tax Assessor/Collector Wilton A. Neal is seeking re-election in the upcoming election.
The North Carrollton native has served as tax assessor/collector for Carroll County for 40 years.
“I have 40 years of on-the-job training,” Neal said. “I not only have the required education but the practical application of that education while serving as the Carroll County Tax Assessor/Collector.”
Neal was first elected as tax assessor/collector in 1975 at 25 years old. He was sworn in in January 1976. In 2011, Neal chose not to seek re-election, but in 2015, when his successor decided not to run for a second term, Neal decided to go back to the position he knew so well.
In his years as tax/assessor collector, Neal has attained the highest level of expertise, Mississippi Assessment Evaluator, as well as the level of Certified General Appraiser through the Mississippi Appraisal Board.
Neal is past president of the Mississippi Tax Assessor/Collection Association, and he is a past recipient of the Mississippi Assessor/Collector Distinguished Service Award.
His long tenure in the position not only gives Carroll County citizens someone who has a vast knowledge of the office and decades of experience, but it also saves taxpayers 75 percent of what the county would pay a tax assessor/collector. Because Neal is already receiving his state retirement, he only receives 25 percent of the salary allocated to him, even though he is working fulltime.
Neal said he is proud of his experienced staff at the tax offices – a staff with a combined 67 years of experience.
“The county has invested in their education to help them do a better job and to better understand the laws and rules of Mississippi tax code,” Neal said.
Neal addressed past issues and some complaints made by citizens regarding his staff. Neal said that mistakes were made, and he and members of his staff have used those situations as learning experiences.
“We all make mistakes,” Neal said. “But you own your mistakes and then move on and learn from those mistakes.”
Neal is also an active part of the Carroll County community. He is a member of North Carrollton Baptist Church. He recently retired as minister of music after serving 45 years at NCBC and is presently serving as minister of music at Mount Olive Baptist Church. He is a member of the Carroll County Development Association and the Carroll County Forestry Association.
Married to wife, Peggy, for 49 years, the couple has two children, Bryan and Jennifer, six grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren.
“I would like to continue to serve the citizens of Carroll County in this very important office,” Neal said. “With my years in office and my extended training, I remain the best candidate for the job. I humbly ask for your continued support in the upcoming election.”
No matter what happens in the election, he will continue whistling and singing and serving the Lord.