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Vanderventer easily re-elected recorder

 Mary Ellen Vanderventer

 Mary Ellen Vanderventer

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Updated: December 8, 2012 6:38AM

Democrat Mary Ellen Vanderventer won re-election as Lake County recorder of deeds over an opponent who wanted to fold the office into the clerk’s office to save money.

Vanderventer, 57, of Waukegan who was unopposed in 2008, fought off Republican Bob Bednar of Mundelein, who promised to eliminate the office vowing, “I won’t be running for a second term.”

Vanderventer won with 58 percent or 154,252 votes to Bednar’s 41.5 percent or 109,819 votes. That includes early voting and vote by mail.

“I’m just really excited,” she said while watching the returns with her parents. “I’m happy to come back. We have a great staff,” she said. This will be her fifth term, a total of 16 years.

She said the office may look at creating satellite offices connected to other county buildings in the county in the future, but technology may make that obsolete.

“Scanning documents now accounts for 28 percent of our recordings. It’s paperless. The title company scans a document and sends it to the recorders office,” she said.

“I don’t take it for granted. I’m really excited,” she said of her easy victory.

Bednar was still reluctant to concede in the race because of the 77,000 early votes that still had not been counted Tuesday night.

He said the recorder’s office was a cash cow and while he didn’t hold a grudge against his opponent, there has been a revolution in the ability to digitally record documents.

Vanderventer countered the office does not levy a tax and it brings in millions of dollars in revenue and the Lake County Board has shown no inclination to fold her office into the county clerk’s office, as Bednar had suggested.

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