Democrat Rick Beer will try to unseat incumbent Republican Melissa Jordan in the Nov. 6 race for the Delaware County recorder's job.
Jordan was appointed by the Delaware County Republican Central Committee in January 2011 after former Recorder Andrew Brenner was elected to the Ohio House of Representatives.
Even facing an opponent with two years as recorder under her belt, Beer said he is the more-qualified candidate for the office, which maintains public real estate records and documents such as deeds, mortgages and plats.
Beer, 46, currently is title manager at Tablerock Land Services, where he works on commercial and residential right-of-way projects.
"I've been in the title business for 22 years, so I have the knowledge and the background to take the office," Beer said. "My opponent was just appointed without any real estate background or experience in the industry.
"If you compare our resumes, the choice is clear," he said. "I have nothing personally against her; she's just not qualified for the job."
Beer said a new software system installed by Jordan is unreliable and has even lost documents -- a charge Jordan denies.
Beer also pledged to work more hours than his opponent.
"Other recorders can't (contact) her because she's never around the office," he said. "If you're a public official, you should be there full time."
Beer said he has a plan to streamline workloads for office staff, review staffing levels, perform a full audit of the office, review compliance, digitize the archives, introduce more efficient software and improve departmental training.
He accused his opponent of benefiting from the connections of her husband, state Sen. Kris Jordan.
"If you believe in fiscal responsibility, you should vote Beer," he said. "Vote for my opponent if you believe in nepotism and partisanship."
Beer is a member of the Delaware Democratic Central Committee. He lives in Lewis Center with his wife, Suzanne, and their son.
Jordan, 32, denounced Beer's critique of her skills in an email exchange.
"While I am not yet an attorney, I have had over three years of legal coursework in pursuit of my law degree," she wrote. "This uniquely qualifies me for this position and gives me valuable experience to better perform in the recorder's office."
"It is shameful that my opponent has resorted to unfounded, desperate attacks and negative campaigning just because his record cannot stand alone."
She is studying in Capital University Law School's part-time evening program to earn her juris doctor by 2013.
In her first two years as recorder, Jordan said, she upgraded computers in her office's public-search room, sped up document requests and implemented a system to track fraudulent filings.
"I hit the ground running from the moment I took office and I bring a unique, private-sector perspective to this position," she said.
Jordan said her software is reliable and cost-effective -- about 30 percent cheaper than the old software. Claims it loses documents are false, she said.
In response to Beer's charge that she works too little, she said she gives "whatever time is necessary to provide quality service."
"My opponent is acting like a typical bureaucrat -- someone who thinks this is merely a Monday-Friday, 40-hour-a-week job where you just check in, check out and collect your paycheck."
If re-elected, Jordan said she would cut the budget, streamline department workflow and "remain a vigilant watchdog of your tax dollars."
Jordan also serves on the Ohio Right to Life board and is a member of the Delaware County Farm Bureau.
She and her husband live in Ostrander.
Six candidates for Delaware County jobs will appear unopposed on ballots Nov. 6. They are:
* Incumbent Republican Carol O'Brien for prosecutor. O'Brien was appointed in January 2011. She lives in Delaware.
* Incumbent Republican Jan Antonoplos for common pleas court clerk. Antonoplos was appointed in 2001. She lives in Dublin.
* Incumbent Republican Russell L. Martin for sheriff. Russell was appointed in May 2012. He lives in Powell.
* Incumbent Republican Jon Peterson for treasurer. Peterson was elected in 2008. He lives in Delaware.
* Incumbent Republican Chris Bauserman for engineer. Bauserman was elected in 1996. He lives in Delaware.
* Incumbent Republican Mark Hickman for coroner. Hickman was appointed in 2005. He lives in Delaware.