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CHARLOTTE--The newest members of the Mecklenburg County Commission joined the current members Tuesday night in taking the first step towards stemming the crisis resulting from the 2011 property revaluation.

The commission voted to approve General Manager Bobbie Shields as the interim County Assessor who will fill the job until next July.

Commission members will now look for a permanent replacement for Garrett Alexander.

Alexander resigned his job as Assessor as the controversy over the revaluation swirled around him and his office.

One of the new members of the Commission, Republican Matthew Ridenhour said, Revaluation, was the number one priority facing the new commission.

I see opportunity more than challenges,' said Pat Cotham.

Cotham is not only a new member but was also voted as the new Chairperson.

While she is a freshman member, Cotham said she is no stranger to the revaluation issue.

I went to all the meetings in the summer and most recently so I carry those stories with me, so we are going to work on that, she said.

The torch was passed to the new Commission Tuesday night as former Chairpersons Jennifer Roberts and Harold Cogdell, who often did not see eye-to-eye with each other, said a final round of good-bys.

We are stronger because of the variety of our viewpoints, ' said Roberts and she and Cogdell were inducted into the Order of the Hornet, the highest award given by the County Commission.

For the first time in history, the Commission Chair and Co-Chair are both women and Kim Ratliff who was voted to be the new Co-Chair said she is confident the board can solve the revaluation tempest.

Said Ratliff, This is what I lived for and trained for all of my adult life so I'm excited to be here and serve the people of Mecklenburg County.

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