Jason Vandever, City Treasurer, City of Charlottesville
Where were you born (and raised, if different)?
I was born and raised right here in Charlottesville.
When and why did you move to the Charlottesville/Albemarle area?
After graduating from college, my wife and I moved to Dallas, Texas for a few years. In 2008, we moved back to Charlottesville and plan on being here for quite a while.
What neighborhood do you live in now?
We currently live off of Ridge Street.
Family (spouse, kids, etc.)?
My wife, Faith, and I have been married eight years, and we have a two-and-a-half-year-old boy and a five-month-old daughter.
What is your alma mater and when did you graduate?
I graduated from James Madison University in 2008 and received a Master’s Certificate in Local Government Management from Virginia Tech in 2012.
What were you doing before you came to work for the city?
Before working for the City, I worked for Wachovia Bank in Dallas, Texas. Then I served as Chief Deputy Treasurer for four years before becoming Treasurer.
Your job title is City Treasurer – what, in your own words, would you say you do?
The City Treasurer is an elected official who is responsible for the collection, processing, investing, and distribution of all City funds. We do tax collection, payment processing, and manage all the City’s banking relationships.
What is the best part of your job? The most difficult part?
The best part of my job is the constant innovation. There is always something new that helps improve the level of service we provide, or creates new efficiencies in the way we operate. That part of the job really excites me. The most difficult part is having to collect past due taxes from citizens who are sometimes going through tough financial times.
How does your job most directly impact the average person?
The most direct impact is that most people in the City have at some point paid a bill or purchased a service from our office. We interact daily with citizens in this regard, and try to make the experience as easy and friendly as possible. Indirectly, prudent financial management and internal controls help give citizens confidence that their local government is run in an efficient, fair, and responsible manner.
What is the most interesting project or work experience that you’ve had while with the city?
One project that I’m particular excited about is the Automated Tax Debit program we instituted a few years ago. There are only a few programs like it in the state, and through this program taxpayers can have their tax bills automatically debited from their bank account on the semi-annual due dates. This program generates $560,000 annually through regular tax payments. We have a monthly debit program as well that has collected over $550,000 in past due taxes since its inception. These programs improve our efficiency and help fund a variety of services for citizens.
What is a little-known fact about you?
I have an identical twin brother who lives in California. Sometimes people think it’s neat that I have someone running around who looks just like I do.
What do you do outside of work hours – hobbies, etc.?
Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my family, reading non-fiction, listening to music, playing basketball, and playing disc golf.