Deeds

An FAQ About the Worcester County Register of Deeds Race

What inspired you to switch gears and make the leap to run for the Register of Deeds position?

I am running for the Worcester County Register of Deeds because I have the perfect experience to succeed the long-serving incumbent.

When I first ran for my State Rep seat, I said I felt 8-10 years would be the right run as State Rep.  I am in my fourth term, and at the end of this term I will have been in this position for eight years. While many of my respected colleagues will disagree with me, my personal philosophy is that any sector and any industry benefit when new ideas find their way into the discussion.

Additionally, prior to being elected to the Legislature, I was always professionally in an executive role, where I could make tough decisions and have them acted upon almost immediately.  The greater sense of urgency in the private sector and in agencies like the Registry appeals to me. 

For those unfamiliar, explain exactly what the Register of Deeds does, and why is this position so important for residents in Worcester County?

The Registry is involved in every real estate transaction in the 55 Worcester County cities and towns it covers.  There is a Worcester North registry that covers a few cities and towns in the northern part of the county.

When you buy or sell a property, you go to a “closing”.  In that closing both parties sign a number of documents to transfer the ownership of the property.  Many of the documents are recorded and filed by the Registry.  The Registry keeps the official record of property ownership.  It also keeps track of who has a lien or liens against the property, including mortgage liens, municipal liens, etc.  It is where deeds are filed.  And it is where Homestead Act declarations are filed to identify your primary residence to provide a degree of shelter from creditors.

How has your role as State Representative prepared you for this new challenge?

I spent my first six years in the Legislature as the ranking Republican on the Municipalities and Regional Government committee.  That committee heard hundreds of bills over the years on items such as land usage, property owner rights, property disputes, subdivision definitions, zoning and other real estate-related topics. 

On a broader base, as a State Representative, I constantly get calls and emails when things don’t go quite right with a government office or agency or program, underscoring the need for every government office to step up their game on customer service, accessibility to information, business processes, and anything else that can improve the customers’ experience.

What experience or skill set do you have that will help you be successful in the role of Register of Deeds?

The Register of Deeds is dramatically different from my current position as a State Rep, and I run for this having given thoughtful consideration as to what the Register position entails.  I understand the concerns that people may have about someone trying to make the transition from a legislative position to an executive position. I recognize that not everyone who makes a good State Rep could effectively lead the Registry, but I know unequivocally that I can.  If you think about it, the primary qualification to be a State Rep is to be a caring person who wants to help people, and many people from varied backgrounds can be spectacular State Reps.

However, critical executive-level operational positions like the Register of Deeds require specific executive-level skills. This position manages a budget and dozens of people. This position is involved in the single biggest transaction of everyone’s lives.  This position requires current, real life knowledge and understanding of real estate. And this position manages hundreds of thousands of records, so understanding information technology is paramount. 

Unlike most political elections, the campaign for this position very much has to be about qualifications over form.  This is (admittedly) a non-glamorous position.  This race can’t be about who has the flashiest billboards, yard signs or website.  It has to be about the ability to perform the job on day one. And to that end, I feel I am the perfect candidate to succeed the incumbent who has held the position since 1972.

I have been practicing real estate for 11 years, the last 8 ½ years as the broker / owner of a small firm.  So I’ve got the current real estate, budgeting and management skills necessary to execute the position on day one.  Professionally, I spent nearly 20 years working in information technology and management consulting, running a branch of a national consulting firm, and helping dozens of companies improve their IT and business processes.  And I spent several years as a consulting contract specialist for the Department of Defense, so I understand the importance of accuracy in critical documents.

This position is too important, with a potential to impact too many people, to trust to anyone who cannot check the appropriate experience boxes.  My learning curve for the position will be very short.

What do you see as your biggest challenge in the Register position?

Organizational inertia.  A body at rest will stay at rest until an external force is applied to it.  The incumbent is into his 5th decade on the job.  While the registry is generally well run, there are always opportunities for improvement and innovation.  I hope the existing team at the registry, who do their current jobs very well, will be open to embracing change and innovative ideas. 

For example, I’d like to implement a “mobile registry” to bring the registry to the real estate closings rather than vice versa.  Imagine the convenience of a South County mobile registry location for the busy end-of-month closing days, saving everyone involved the hour round trip to / from Worcester.  Imagine a mobile app to allow easy access to registry documents. These are the types of things a Kevin Kuros-led registry will bring.

You have quite a tenure of success as a State Rep since 2010, was it a difficult decision to leave Beacon Hill?

It was.  I love my job and take it seriously, having never missed a vote in my 4 terms… nearly 1600 straight votes and counting, something few of my colleagues can say. My voters elected me to do a job and I’ve done it every day since being sworn in.

I love the way hundreds have opened their hearts and homes to me over the years.  I am blessed having been elected four times as State Rep, to be able to recognize my constituents when they have milestones, receive awards, celebrate victories, mourn losses.  I will miss the debate with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, sometimes intense, but always respectful.  I will miss the policy-wonkish side of government.  I will miss finding the beauty of common ground on specific issues with colleagues who I may differ with significantly philosophically.

What I won’t miss is the glacial pace at which things move.  I have always had an executive mindset.  Make a decision and have it acted upon.  And while the legislature is intentionally designed to be deliberative and not reactive, it could accomplish so much more with a heightened sense of urgency.

How have your colleagues taken the news of your departure?

Many were surprised because they know I love being a State Rep.  Closer to home, there has been an outpouring from many of my constituents, wishing me well but expressing sadness that I’ll be leaving the legislature.  It makes you feel good about the work you’ve done and the way you’ve interacted with people.  I’ve been reassuring my constituents that nothing changes between now and January of 2019.  That I and my aide Amanda Copeland are still there for them.

Have you begun the campaign process yet? Do you have any events planned?

We have already begun to get the word out about the position, what it entails, why I’m running, and why it is so important to elect someone to the position who has the skills and experience to be successful.  I am happy to discuss my candidacy with anyone at any time.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

This election is more than a year away, and it’s for a position that many people are unfamiliar with. It is critical to educate the public about the importance of the Registry of Deeds, and why I feel my real-world experience and credentials are a perfect match to succeed the long-serving incumbent.  I am the first candidate to publicly announce my candidacy for this position, doing so on September 12, 2017.  Others may follow, but I have the experience to lead.

Are there any media links about this race?

Please visit the links below:

Worcester Telegram – September 12, 2017

Blackstone Valley Tribune – September 22, 2017

Meat and Potatoes Show – KTNTRadio.com – September 26, 2017: