Shelby Co. (ECWd) –
Shelby County board members Gary Patterson and Jeff Slifer are once again at the forefront of what appears to be malfeasance on a grand scale. As members of the Sheriff’s Committee, they both signed off on a claim from a private law firm for $6,194.44.
Who in the Sheriff’s office coded this claim as Holiday and Overtime? The invoices included with the claim clearly reflect it had nothing to do with “Holiday and Overtime”. Anyone having a clue about budgets and line items knows a legal bill for legal services has nothing to do with Holiday and Overtime pay. Was this a way to get it paid because there was no budget for this hiring?
No one on the county board questioned the claim during the approval by the county board as a whole.
This paid claim begs numerous questions. For starters, who engaged a private attorney at the Sheriff’s Office? The answer, assuming the attorney is speaking the truth, was engaged by the former sheriff Sean McQueen as confirmed in the video below.
“Two days ago, I was actually asked by the Sheriff to engage, help him with the small part in negotiating…..:”
A county elected official cannot hire legal counsel, with the one exception being the County State’s Attorney. Will this be another case like the past Shelby County State’s Attorney, where that office will claim they hired the attorney since a county officer cannot legally do so? We suspect so. The last State’s Attorney provided a bogus affidavit to provide cover for the County Board’s illegal hiring. It will be interesting to see how this matter plays out. We have sent a few Freedom of Information Act requests to the State’s Attorney to get more information because if he was actually hired by the State’s Attorney, it’s clear numerous other problems must be exposed.
While gathering information on this matter, I wonder how many taxpayers in the county knew the Holiday and Overtime budget is now $48,687.75 over budget?
We have contacted both board members, Patterson and Slifer for a response to our questions. At the time of publication, there has been no response. If they do respond we will update this article or publish a new one based on the response.