Tax Office Veteran Helps Manage Change - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Tax Office Veteran Helps Manage Change

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134 people work for the North Dakota State Tax Department.

They take up three floors in the tower of the capitol building.

This time of year things get hectic up there.

Breaking in a new commissioner and deputy commissioner doesn't ease the stress.

It's a good thing someone is around who has seen it all.

Mike Chaussee has the story...

With all the changes on the 8th floor of the capitol building, you would think things would be a mess.

And while there are signs of chaos...

"It's out of my hands, I leave it up to the experts," says Ryan Rauschenberger, ND Tax Commissioner.

New tax commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger says the experts have things under control.

"Smooth..one word, smooth,"

That expert is Jill Weigel.

She has worked for the tax department since calculators were as big as suitcases.

Since now retired U.S. Senator Byron Dorgan was the chief number cruncher for the state.

Since Rauschenberger was....well, he wasn't yet....

"Yeah, it'll be interesting," says Rauschenberger.

38 years she's been with the department.

Now, six months before retirement, she has to break in a new commissioner....

"We're kind of fortunate he was the deputy commissioner," says Weigel.

Rauschenberger worked as deputy tax commissioner for almost five years.

Then, on January second, became the 25th North Dakota tax commissioner after Cory Fong resigned.

"Changing the name on everything...that's probably the biggest thing to do," says Weigel.

Weigel's relieved he's ready for the job.

And she needs that, considering the rest of us don't help much...

"People think their returns are filed perfectly. Not true. We probably have about 130-thousand returns that error out every year out of the 400,000 we get," says Weigel.

Weigel retires in June.

Her husband will too.

They plan to travel.

And when she takes her last ride down this elevator.

Rauschenberger will just have another change to deal with.

Mike Chaussee KX News.

Weigel started working for the department in 1976.

Jimmy Carter was elected president that year.

The Steelers and Cowboys played in Super Bowl...10.

A stamp...was 13 cents.

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