Allen County Surveyor Jeff Sorg will step down effective Sept. 16.

Allen County Republican Chairman Steve Shine said he received a letter Monday from Sorg, who cited health reasons for his resignation. The letter was dated Thursday.

The county commissioners voted unanimously Friday to transfer Sorg’s duties to Michael Fruchey, a former member of the surveyor’s office who now works for the Allen County Highway Department.

Sorg, a Republican, has missed 65% of county drainage board meetings and 77% of plan commission meetings since January, Commissioner Therese Brown said Friday. Sorg has not been in the office since February and only infrequently in the months before that. About 100 documents await his signature, she said, and he has not appointed a deputy to handle his duties.

Brown said a functioning surveyor’s office is important because the county is seeing significant development. The surveyor’s office reviews new development plans, according to the county’s website.

The county has another longtime surveyor’s office employee, Larry Weber, who has stood in for Sorg and provided surveyor’s input at some meetings. But Weber cannot sign documents because he is neither a professional engineer nor an elected surveyor, Brown said.

A countywide caucus of Republican precinct committee people will convene at 9 a.m. July 30 at Allen County Republican Headquarters at Main and Harrison streets to choose Sorg’s successor. Interested candidates must contact Shine no later than July 27.

Sorg was last elected in 2020 and his term runs through 2024. His salary is about $64,000 a year. County Auditor Nick Jordan said Sorg would be paid through his official resignation day. Sorg could not be reached for comment.

Sorg was also county surveyor from 1993 until 1997, having been appointed from the deputy surveyor position after the death of Surveyor Louis K. Machlan in 1993 and then elected in 1996. Sorg was forced out of the position in 1997 when news became public that he was convicted in the late 1970s of burglary and theft.

Indiana law prohibits felons from running for or holding elected office. The Republican Party replaced Sorg with Al Frisinger.

In 2006, Sorg’s convictions were set aside, allowing him to again seek office. In 2016, he defeated Frisinger in the Republican primary and was unopposed in the November election of that year.

Metro Editor

Metro Editor Jim Chapman has nearly 40 years of experience at area newspapers. A Fort Wayne native, he has covered Fort Wayne and northeast Indiana for The Journal Gazette since 1990.