Rice, who was first elected as county treasurer in 2008, won the Republican nomination for the position in March and was re-elected to the post after facing no Democratic opposition in November.
Elected officials are required to file a bond with the probate judge’s office 40 days after an election is certified. Walker County Probate Judge Rick Allison said Rice did not file that bond with his office by the deadline, which was Dec. 26.
“The Alabama Code stipulates that the office is void and must be vacated, and it gives us guidelines on who all needs to be notified,” Allison said.
The Walker County Commission is the appointing body for the position and were notified of the situation.
Rice said the bond was paid, but the paperwork was not filed with the probate judge.
“It was an oversight,” she said. “I paid the bond, but this is my first time to be re-elected. I thought since I had already filed with the probate judge when I was elected that it was already covered. I didn’t realize I had to file it again.”
Commission Chairman Billy Luster said the procedures can be confusing and other counties were dealing with similar situations.
“Mobile County had the same problem with its treasurer,” Luster said. “He didn’t get the paperwork filed for whatever reason and the commission had to appoint him. That’s what we did today.”
After being appointed Tuesday morning, Rice was sworn-in later in the day on the front steps of the Walker County Courthouse.
“It’s my honor to get to swear-in Shelia. She does a tremendous job as treasurer,” Walker County District Judge Henry Allred said.
Rice said she is excited to begin her second term.
“I’m honored that the people of Walker County elected me, and I will continue to work hard as their treasurer,” Rice said.