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City official sacrificed salary, Marshall approves P & Z board members (Update 12:55 p.m. Feb. 10)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Update: The Missouri Municipal League wage survey used by the Marshall City Council to determine a fair salary for City Administrator Connie Latimer is available here

From left: As Ward 3 Councilman Sam Moten looks on, Ward 3 Councilman Dan Brandt, representing the council's personnel committee, announces that City Administrator Connie Latimer worked without pay last year to protect the city from critics who claimed her appointment was an ethics violation, a charge Brandt said was unfounded.
(Eric Crump/Democrat-News)
City Administrator Connie Latimer offers praise for city workers who responded to the demands of last week's blizzard. At the City Council meeting Monday, Feb. 7, Latimer received a new contract and the council announced that she worked last year without pay.
(Eric Crump/Democrat-News)
The City of Marshall authorized a contract with Connie Latimer for employment as the City Administrator during the council's meeting Monday, Feb. 7.

The contract, introduced by Ward 3 Council Member Dan Brandt of the Personnel Committee, comes after an announcement that Latimer served the city without pay this past year.

Following her move last year from mayor to city administrator, some residents complained that the move was unethical. Latimer later said that the council sought legal advice before the change and everything was legitimate.

The accusation, however, was one of the reasons she chose to not accept a salary.

"I wasn't comfortable putting the city in that kind of a situation," Latimer said.

The city administrator not only rescinded a salary, but also paid her own health insurance. She was paid $750, however, as the business manager of the Marshall Municipal Band. That payment is generated from tax revenue that supports the band and is separate from the General Fund.

"I don't know if it's dedication or ignorance," she joked of working without pay, but continued, "I love this city. This city has great employees. I love them. I wouldn't have bailed on them."

The contract approved unanimously by council members Monday evening is a three-year term, beginning now and running through September 2014.

Marshall building permits by category for January 2011.
(Contributed image)
After studying wages of city administrators in towns roughly the size of Marshall, a salary of $67,500 was approved for Latimer. Research reflected the low end of salary range at approximately $72,000 annually, Brandt said.

In other news, two new members were approved for the Planning and Zoning Commission. Norvelle Brown and Garry Cobb were approved during the meeting. Each will hold a four-year term to expire Nov. 1, 2014. Additionally, Eric Sappington was named the newest board member of Marshall Tourism Commission. He replaces and will finish Lorin Fahrmeier's term, then continue with a three-year term to expire June 1, 2014.

Council Member Lorna Alexander updated the council with Community Development and Code Committee reports. Twenty-seven permits were issued including four building permits, 10 electrical, six mechanical, four plumbing and three occupancy permits. Additionally, the city collected $626.50 in permit fees.

The permits, issued in January, hold a construction value of more than $58,000, and $35,000 of that total supports the remodeling of churches, assemblies or residential structures.

The city's sales tax reports reflect an increase of $17,000 over January of last year and an increase of $8,500 for the park in Jan. 2010.

Municipal Services was commended for its efforts in snow removal. Officials said within eight hours of the first snow the primary roads were plowed and secondaries were plowed within 12 hours.

"Considering the amount of snow, they did an excellent job," Latimer said.

Latimer also thanked Kyle Gibbs, general manager of Marshall Municipal Utilities. Dump trucks provided by MMU helped relocate snow from sidewalks and streets to a compost area. Roughly 5,000 tons of snow was removed from College Street between Odell and Miami Avenues.

All council members were present. The next meeting is scheduled for 5:15 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22, in observance of Presidents' Day.

Contact Sarah Reed at sreed@marshallnews.com

Related story:
Latimer steps down as mayor, is appointed Marshall city administrator:

Missouri Municipal League Wage Survey



CarthageHome Rule$7,297,494.0012668City Administrator71,467/YR98,109/YR
Farmington3rd Class$32,000,000.0013924City Manager/Administrator65,545/YR85,053/YR
FultonHome Rule$39,450,732.0012128City Administrator80,000/YR120,000/YR
Jackson4th Class$25,000,000.0011947City Manager/Administrator66,609/YR97,801/YR
Lake Saint Louis4th Class$10,995,418.0014500City Administrator107,123/YR116,112/YR
Lebanon3rd Class$41,414,000.0012155City Administrator80,828/YR
Marshall3rd Class$8,832,098.0012433City Manager/Administrator65,270/YR
Maryville3rd Class$33,654,706.0010581City Manager/Administrator71,046/YR113,577/YR
Mexico3rd Class$14,401,053.0011320City Manager/Administrator80,100/YR124,155/YR
Moberly3rd Class$22,385,067.0013741City Manager74,340/YR101,724/YR
NeoshoHome Rule$12,762,223.0010505City Manager/Administrator85,900/YR105,471/YR
Washington3rd Class$19,723,730.0014356City Administrator88,661/YR115,682/YR
West Plains3rd Class Comm$33,533,939.0010866City Administrator *60,000/YR100,000/YR

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A State Auditor if requested does a much more in depth audit than an accounting firm hired by a city or government/business entity. Follow the link and you will understand why I posted it and questioned if this is something our electorate is interested in requesting.


-- Posted by Dave in MidMO on Sun, Feb 20, 2011, at 7:24 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Thanks for the link, and yes, an audit by the state would be looking at the city's operations through a different lens, certainly.

Here's one site that explains what a performance audit is: http://www.performanceaudit.org/performa...

It appears to be broader in scope than annual fiscal audits.

Thanks Eric,

I'll look forward to more info. Keep in mind also that my comments are directed at city officials and not the newspaper. I realize you are only reporting what you are being told. The problem, as I see it, is are we supposed to believe them?

-- Posted by What the f...... on Fri, Feb 18, 2011, at 10:01 AM

Just wanted to add, WTF, that I agree with your comment about trust. It's important and much harder to regain than to maintain.

I also appreciate all the questions people have asked. This issue has given me an opportunity to learn more about city government. Sorry I've been a bit slow to report answers. I hope to get more info posted this afternoon.

-- Posted by Eric Crump on Fri, Feb 18, 2011, at 9:37 AM


The city is saying they did spend the money that would have been paid to Connie but there is no documented proof.

We are to assume, considering everything else we've been told that this is the truth. Right now, truth seems to be a rare commodity.

How do we know that money isn't squirreled away somewhere? I know what we've been told and what we haven't been told. Personally, I don't know what to believe. Trust in our government officials is paramount. Once it's gone it's almost impossible to get back. What's the price for trust? Maybe as much as $67,500.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Fri, Feb 18, 2011, at 8:42 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
No. The city didn't say there was no documentation. The city's financial records for last year were audited, as always, so we'll obtain a copy of the audit report.

Perhaps an audit is what the electorate is requesting.....

Here are the what hows.


-- Posted by Dave in MidMO on Thu, Feb 17, 2011, at 4:34 PM


Was just another question not wanting taxpayers have another big surprise, no need get excited ... Thanks for all the digging you been doing

-- Posted by momandgramma on Wed, Feb 16, 2011, at 2:32 PM


Lets say if that money was to be audited Connie could not show when,where, and how it was spent??

more things make you say hmmmmmmmm

-- Posted by momandgramma on Wed, Feb 16, 2011, at 2:00 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I didn't say that. I haven't asked her to document how the money was spent. She provided documentation of how much she made. I think it would take quite a bit of time to compare approved budgets and actual expenditures in a detailed way, and while I realize the resulting documentation might convince some people that no financial shenanigans have taken place, it would be time taken away from the current business of the city. I know my staff doesn't have time to do it and I suspect the city staff doesn't, either. If there was reason to suspect misappropriation, that would be different. If you've got such evidence, please do let me know: ecrump@marshallnews.com or 660-886-2233.


Are you gonna answer this or am I writing with invisible air ink again??

Response by Eric Crump/Editor:

The money was left in the general fund and was spent on the needs of city departments, according to Mrs. Latimer. No money was set aside for a future payment, she said. The only consideration she received from the city last year was the stipend she receives for serving as the Municipal Band's business manager. About $750.

At this point I'm skeptical of anything that comes about everything is shaded .....so my question will you get the documentation and receipts print in paper proof of where this money was spent account for every penny please.

Show us Citizens is some truth and honesty in something that has come out of this mess

-- Posted by momandgramma on Sat, Feb 12, 2011, at 4:46 PM

-- Posted by momandgramma on Wed, Feb 16, 2011, at 10:19 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Mrs. Latimer showed her city W-2 form reflecting $750 income total for 2010 (that was for serving as Municipal Band business manager). I'm afraid it would be impractical to dig up receipts for each expenditure the city made with the money she did not accept.


Your post just about sums it all up. If that is the Ethic Commission's suggestion, that could be her motivation for serving without a salary. The problem is, she did hold the position, salary or no salary. I don't understand why our city administrator and city council couldn't show even the slightest bit of openess and honesty in dealing with this matter. To me it speaks volumes as to their lack of regard for the citizens they represent.

-- Posted by Bcat on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 10:23 PM

3 year deal to get to 10 years of city employment for retirement?

Pay for Plaza management-were the proper forms revealing that, filled out?

Appointing friends to Planning and Zoning-so they don't inquire?

Is there a copy of the 3 year contract?

-- Posted by mu-grad on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 8:55 PM


-- Posted by What the f...... on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 8:36 PM

The Mo Ethics Committee "SUGGESTS" no council person or mayor should hold that position for a period of one year, prior to accepting a position as City Adminstrator.

ONE YEAR!!!!!!


Part of the deal? or CYA?

-- Posted by nouveaublogger on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 8:08 PM

Hey gal66,

I think we already know what the answer is, don't you? That was all part of "the deal".

-- Posted by What the f...... on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 2:53 PM

koeller77 I understand what Eric said, this has nothing to do with that, it is clear she is being paid in the same starting range to manage a city with a smaller budget.

I would like to know how it was justified to pay our new administrator the same or almost the same as our old one?

-- Posted by Gal66 on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 2:11 PM

Gal66 -

Carthage pays their admin more to manage a smaller budget, and it looks like Lake St. Louis pays substantially more for not that much bigger of a budget.

Also - please note that Eric already said that he didn't know if THOSE specific cities were used to determine Ms. Latimer's salary. He simply picked ones that were similar in size to Marshall.

-- Posted by koeller77 on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 1:05 PM

Here is another question that was brought up by someone else.

Why does Marshall pay their City Manager a starting salary of 65,270 to manage a 8,832,098.00 budget?

Take a look at the numbers in above story.

It looks like to me our City Manager is being paid in the same range to manage a small town budget as she would be paid to manage a much larger budget does that seem right?

If in fact she would be able to get a job in another town with here experence.

The things that make you go hmmm!

-- Posted by Gal66 on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 10:44 AM

farmer'sgranddaughter Said

"But with people like Connie looking out for Marshall's interest, employment development and future opportunities"

Tell me just what you think Mrs. Latimer has done that has brought anything better to this town than what was here 25 years ago?

Can an "outsider" who administers do that?

In my opinion yes!

You know if the same people run a town for decades nothing ever changes!

-- Posted by Gal66 on Tue, Feb 15, 2011, at 9:38 AM

How many people are on the PZ commission? How many has Connie nominated? More info to ask, thank you.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Mon, Feb 14, 2011, at 6:51 PM

Part of the conflict is appointing people to the Planning and Zoning Commission. Does Connie pick them? Of course, it will be impossible to prove they are asked to look the other way. However, Eric, look who has been appionted and see what THEIR qualifications are. Friends? Please ask about the Plaza Manager salary, and if the forms were filled out. And that they were recorded at the PROPER time, not afterwords.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Mon, Feb 14, 2011, at 5:55 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Will try to find out more. I believe anyone can nominate someone for a board or commission, but it's the city council, not the city administrator that makes the appointment.


This is an excellent example of where we come down to trust in our public officials and for me, it's not there right now

A conflict of interest regarding the plaza properties could arise when we are told there are no code violations as far as Connie knows. I wonder when it was last inspected? How can I trust that any potential code violations would not be convenientlty overlooked? or that fixing any violations might be "postponed" for a year. That seems to all the rage anyway.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Mon, Feb 14, 2011, at 1:58 PM


I am reposting my earlier post. I noticed you did make a post regarding the reporting of income for someone in this position (which further illustrates my point that holding the plaza "manager" position is a conflict of interest.) However, I am still waiting for an explanation of your idea that this job is not related. Also, based on the statute you posted, I assume you will be pursuing questions about the salary for the plaza position. Correct? Please see post below.

I just have a question relating to Eric's earlier comment, "I believe that job (manager of the plaza) is unrelated to her job with the city, so it seems to me it would be inappropriate to ask what she's compensated."

Can you explain your logic on the fact that it is unrelated.

#1 The property is in extremly poor condition and could be in violation of some city codes. As city administrator Ms. Latimer shares some responsibility in enforcing these codes. Although, she may not be into seeing through all city codes when one considers that the driveway of her recently constructed home does not meet city code.

#2 As taxpayers should we not expect a civil servant that is earning a salary of approximately $69,000 per year to be dedicated solely to that job, and not take on side jobs that require working during the normal business day. It seems that managing the Plaza would require some work during normal business hours.

Based on these two factors can you please explain how the job at the Plaza is unrelated?

-- Posted by The Wonderdog on Mon, Feb 14, 2011, at 12:25 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Sorry if my followup comment didn't clarify, but I was in error. If outside income exceeds a certain amount, the city administrator has to file a disclosure form. I don't know if Mrs. Latimer's compensation exceeds the threshold. I'll ask.

I will also check about the conflict of interest question. I still think there is no inherent conflict of interest unless an issue develops that would create a specific conflict. I could be wrong. Wouldn't be the first time.


Can you find out for us how much the council is compensated and what benefits,if any they receive? I just want to know what they may have to lose if they are voted out of office.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Sat, Feb 12, 2011, at 10:06 AM

Thank you for the research. Now you have the right to ask the salary (it is over $5000) and see if the proper forms-notices were given. I appreciate your continued investigation.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 9:19 PM

And from Sec. 2-308:

"(c) The chief administrative officer and the chief purchasing officer also shall disclose in writing, by May 1st for the previous calendar year, the following information:

(1) The name and address of each of the employers of such person from whom income of one thousand dollars ($1,000.00), or more, was received during the year covered by the statement;

(2) The name and address of each sole proprietorship that he owned; the name, address and the general nature of the business conducted of each general partnership and joint venture in which he was a partner or participant; the name and address of each partner or co-participant for each partnership or joint venture unless such names and addresses are filed by the partnership or joint venture with the Secretary of State; the name, address and general nature of the business conducted of any closely-held corporation or limited partnership in which the person owned ten percent (10%), or more, of any class of the outstanding stock or limited partnership units; and the name of any publicly traded corporation or limited partnership that is listed on a regulated stock exchange or automated quotation system in which the person owned two percent (2%), or more, of any class of outstanding stock, limited partnership units or other equity interests; and any trust in which the person is a trustee or settler or in which the person or the person's spouse or dependent child, whether singularly or collectively, is a beneficiary or holder of a reversionary interest of ten percent (10%) or more of the corpus of the trust; and

(3) The name and address of each corporation for which such person served in the capacity of a director, officer or receiver."

-- Posted by Eric Crump on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 7:59 PM

It looks like disclosure may depend on the level of compensation involved. Here's what appears to be a relevant passage from Sec. 2-307 of city ordinances:

"(b) Any member of the Council of the City who has a "substantial or private interest" in any measure, bill, order or ordinance proposed or pending before such governing body must disclose that interest to the clerk of such body and such disclosure shall be recorded in the ethics disclosure journal of the City as established by the Clerk. Substantial or private interest is defined as ownership by the individual, the individual's spouse, or the individual's dependent children, whether singularly or collectively, directly or indirectly, of: (1) ten percent (10%), or more, of any business entity; or (2) an interest having a value of ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00), or more; or (3) the receipt of a salary, gratuity, or other compensation or remuneration of five thousand dollars ($5,000.00), or more, per year, from any individual, partnership, organization, or association within any calendar year."

-- Posted by Eric Crump on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 7:58 PM


These are not personal attacks on Connie. When one is in a postition of government they should expect critcism in a public manner. This entire situation questions their judgement on this and potentially future matters.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 7:56 PM

Eric, Who appoints-recommends people to the Planning and Zoning Commission? Connie? That is where the potential conflict with receiving a salary from the Marshall Plaza owners lies. Her decisions can be influenced based upon a conflict of pay between 2 parties. The pay is relevant.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 7:24 PM


-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 5:43 PM


What was wrong with that comment in response farmersdaughter was nothing in it and my grandmother was not ashamed

-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 5:42 PM

This is marked to the attention of those of you who are doing your best to keep the "city administrator" situation alive! Forget it! Connie Latimer has served Marshall well! She has made difficult and skilled decisions that are good for Marshall's best interest as a community and its citizens and will continue to serve us for several years. She listens to our concerns, she cares about our future and the image that Marshall presents to other communities, businesses, etc. She has class, good sense and logical decision and communication skills. Whether you want to admit it or not, she was and will be the best candidate for this position for some time. Only people who do not really know her personally would think otherwise. She is not one of my "closest" friends but I consider her my friend. She understands the word "respect"! So she does not have an administration degree, SO WHAT! Most people who graduate from college and graduate school do not stay within their particular area of study anyway, they become involved in other areas of vocation because that is what their interest and talent develops into as a sucessful career. So stop whining about her job and how she got it. It isn't going to help you keep yours! If you don't have a degree, get one - just so that you can say that you did it! And if you have a degree but you don't work in that particular field of study, you are probably working and are satisfied and reasonably happy. If not find out why and fix the situation!

Connie Latimer deserves our support and assistance to strive to make Marshall the best town that it can be - after all, it is where we live and raise our kids. Marshall has come along way! Twenty five years ago, things were pretty bleak even for people with a degree! But with people like Connie looking out for Marshall's interest, employment development and future opportunities, Marshall citizens should be able to live a comfortable life filled with pride and dignity if they are willing to work hard and PARTICIPATE in a community. After all, it takes a village with good dedicated leaders, citizens and volunteers to make a true difference. We all have a roll in Marshall's vision for the future! Connie Latimer does her best and works well with others to make our community something to be proud of. Can an "outsider" who administers do that?

-- Posted by farmer'sgranddaughter on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 4:12 PM


I am not the brightest crayon in the box yet these do not look right help me understand please

Sec. 2-142. Appointment and tenure.

(a) The city administrator shall be employed by a majority of the members elected to the city council, with the approval of the mayor.

(b) The city administrator shall serve at the pleasure of the appointing authority. The appointing authority may enter into a contract of employment with the city administrator for a term not to exceed two (2) years. Said contract shall provide that the city administrator may be removed at any time with or without cause, provided that, when removed without cause, said city administrator shall be paid the full amount remaining under the contract. For the purposes of this division, "removal with cause" shall mean:

yet....The contract approved unanimously by council members Monday evening is a three-year term, beginning now and running through September 2014.

-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 3:39 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I'm running a little behind today. I just posted a story that addresses (b).



I just have a question relating to your earlier comment, "I believe that job (manager of the plaza) is unrelated to her job with the city, so it seems to me it would be inappropriate to ask what she's compensated."

Can you explain your logic on the fact that it is unrelated.

#1 The property is in extremly poor condition and could be in violation of some city codes. As city administrator Ms. Latimer shares some responsibility in enforcing these codes. Although, she may not be into seeing through all city codes when one considers that the driveway of her recently constructed home does not meet city code.

#2 As taxpayers should we not expect a civil servant that is earning a salary of approximately $69,000 per year to be dedicated solely to that job, and not take on side jobs that require working during the normal business day. It seems that managing the Plaza would require some work during normal business hours.

Based on these two factors can you please explain how the job at the Plaza is unrelated?

-- Posted by The Wonderdog on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 2:51 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Yes. It's private property that hosts privately run busineses. Presumably, no tax money is used to compensate her for that job. If there is a situation in which her role as a city official and her role as a representative of the owners of that property come into conflict, then the Plaza job becomes relevant.

I plan to meet next week with a city code official to find out more about the status of the Plaza compliance with city regulations.


Anyway it could be inspected again ...

We are speaking few of the apartments I know for a fact heating bills range $ 200.00 and little over and this no trash and water ...

compared with a older 3 bedroom home full size heated basement is running around $160.00 paying trash and water

big difference in this heating something is not right

-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 2:23 PM


So what is the plan on next step inquire on this matter of her degree?

Should us citizens be concerned of any other positions serving us?

To become a mayor, you have to first get on the ballot. You have to get out there and meet the public and have them sign a petition so you can get your name on the ballot.

Was this how Council Member Lorna Alexander assumed temp role of Mayor?

or what actions took place so she and our council members appointed Connie Latimer for employment as the City Administrator

Gosh so many questions back and forth see if all these people qualified for these positions and decisions for employment

-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 1:55 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
The mayor pro tem is elected by the council. Lorna Alexander and Ron Duvall were both elected by the council in turn.

Mrs. Latimer is not required by ordinance to have a college degree in order to serve as city administrator if the council deems her combination of education and experience compensates for lack of degree.

We've described the process by which Connie Latimer was appointed city administrator in previous stories. See www.marshallnews.com/connielatimer

Eric, Also ask Connie how much she is paid for her work concerning the Plaza. Whether she oversees, manages, caretaker...it doesn't matter the title. I believe you will discover a salary that will elicit further questions about that situation. Time to clear the air, people want to know.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 1:53 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I believe that job is unrelated to her job with the city, so it seems to me it would be inappropriate to ask what she's compensated.

Regarding qualifications, I thought I had read something last Janary that indicated that Ms. Latimer had completed a degree at MoVal, though the sourse work was English (or something along this line), but definitely not in the PA area. I cannot locate where I saw the details in the paper's on-line file and do not see that bios are loaded for any of the city leaders anywhere to verify the above. If she had not completed a degree and what coursework she did accomplish was in something other than public administration, government, management, etc. and the educational experience was used in concert with her time on the council, then I'd have to say that she barely met the qualifications for consideration for the position, let alone to be qualified for selection. Eric, Sarah: Do you have any notes or old story info available that talked about this that is not on the electronic history files?

-- Posted by oceanlord49 on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 12:40 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I don't have any addition information Mrs. Latimer's education, no.


While you are checking all these great questions Citizens Of Marshall have brought in your direction...

While we wait on these, lets put Connie's complying with the "equivalent combination" option and skills to work

Please check on...

I have family & Friends lives in Deer Creek and some of comments are...

Why Deer Creek Apartment are so not put together at all

Why is the utilities here so high?

Why no insulation in walls? (can hear others conversations)

Why are the walls and ceilings cracking in most of the apartments then( masked with caulking and paint )

Why when people sign a lease is allowed have others move in, and keep other tenants awake?

Why ones that pay the maxed rent ($ 449.00 ) is on a years lease and others is a month to month

Why if you start a stinky you start getting lease violations?

-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 12:37 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
These are good questions. I've heard from others suggesting they have concerns about the complex, but please note that Deer Creek is managed by a Kansas City real estate firm, not the city of Marshall. The facility was up to code when it was inspected following the recent remodeling project, according to city officials.

Thanks Eric,

Response by Eric Crump/Editor:

Sarah is working on a story about the council's reasons for offering Mrs. Latimer the job. My understanding is that her years as council member and mayor are considered relevant experience and/or training.

Yet what about the educational background ?

Bachelor's degree (B. A.) in Public Administration or related field; three to five years related experience and/or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience.

-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 10:37 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I don't believe she has a college degree, but she has attended college, thus complying with the "equivalent combination" option.


Something else if you do not mind checking on please is qualifications of this position

Does it require further education? or Connie already have?

Bachelor's degree (B. A.) in Public Administration or related field; three to five years related experience and/or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Not wanting bash yet, this was done in such a closed way ... just so many things are just not adding up my way

-- Posted by momandgramma on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 10:27 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Sarah is working on a story about the council's reasons for offering Mrs. Latimer the job. My understanding is that her years as council member and mayor are considered relevant experience and/or training.

How bout MDN run a copy of this work contract in the paper. This would be a good way for the GOOD PEOPLE of Marshall who pay taxes to read. It should be public record and I don't want to hear if I want to see it that I can get a copy of it at the City office's. MDN should put it out for all GOOD taxpayer's to see...just sayin

-- Posted by Marshall Man on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 10:03 AM

Dateline, Inside Edition, just a couple off the top of my head.

-- Posted by wheresthelove on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 8:56 AM

Here is a quote from an article that Eric posted in one of his responses...

"Regarding why she kept quiet about her decision to work without pay, she said a) she didn't think anyone really needed to know and b) no one asked. She suggested she didn't want to call more attention to the situation because it would have been a distraction"

I am so tired of politicians and city/government admin types saying that "people dont need to know" or "That it will cause a distraction"

HOW in the world is OPENNESS and HONESTY and UPFRONTNESS a distraction IF everything is on the up and up? AND since the people in the city are FUNDING the salaries for the City Admin. position and other by taxation CONFISCATION of their own hard earned money, how in the world can you consider this something that no one needs to know? Even is she did forgo her pay, any and all issues regarding the operation of our City, State and Fed governments needs to be open and upfront, instead of back room deals, hidden and hushed up manipulations

It does not matter if other cities have the same issues or anything...

IF the city wants the tax payers to vote for their issues then hiding things that are supposedly "No big deal" sure is not the way to grow trust

-- Posted by mrxray on Fri, Feb 11, 2011, at 8:31 AM

That explains the 3 year deal. At 10 years you become vested and eligible for retirement from the city.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Thu, Feb 10, 2011, at 6:27 PM

Eric, how many years was Connie mayor?

-- Posted by mu-grad on Thu, Feb 10, 2011, at 5:59 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Seven, I think. 2003-2010.

Eric, many good questions have been asked on this blog. Hope you are really taking note. As for those writing all these questions, I hope you are not the armchair politicos who cry fowl at every turn but when opportunity arises to participate and make changes you sit in your arm chairs and say not me.

Marshall politics is no different from most cities, big or small. You have some good guys and you have some bad guys. I hope Connie is one of the good ones.

One last thing, for the salary comparisons made by the city council. I hope Lake St. Louis was not a real comparison. That particular city is very well off. For the most part, the average earnings in that community makes Marshall look like a slum town.

-- Posted by ghostwriter1978 on Thu, Feb 10, 2011, at 2:17 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
We have been noting the questions asked. Sarah has been interviewing council members and we're trying to contact other officials who can help us provide more information.

Regarding the wage survey, the full survey includes numerous cities, big and small, and includes other positions, like city clerk and police chief, etc. I narrowed it down to cities with roughly the same population as Marshall (10K to 15K), but I do not know specifically which cities the council used for comparision.

All the cities are, of course, different from each other in some ways. Even within the same population band, there are vast differences in the size of the budget, for instance.

miss marple,

I guess you're right. What was I thinking in expecting a "newspaper" to look into something.

Trust me, I will be voting next time as I always do.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Thu, Feb 10, 2011, at 7:43 AM

A couple of point need to be addressed:

1. What the f wants to know what the relevant statute is - I'd suggest he or she do the work of finding it instead of telling someone else to do it. It's not difficult, and in fact is already quoted more than once in the comments on stories about this issue last year.

2. drop555 says "I do not believe she went without a salary." How about YOU prove that?

3. Seagarr made the best suggestion yet - if you don't like the situation, stop complaining here and get yourselves to a council meeting to make your feelings known PUBLICLY.

4. The next time an election rolls around, get out and VOTE.

5. Since you are all such experts, run for office yourself.

-- Posted by Miss Marple on Thu, Feb 10, 2011, at 7:32 AM

Another thought comes to mind. If you are truly serious about running as a write-in candidate, an appearance at council meetings where you can address your concerns would be premium advertising for you. What is premium advertising? Advertising that is primarily word-of-mouth and costs you nothing.

-- Posted by red dog on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 9:56 PM

Talk. Talk. Talk.

Anyone with a problem with how things are done in this town can address the problem directly. A personal appearance at council meetings will make a much more meaningful statement than anything written here. It looks like enough are bothered by the situation that a good sized contingent could appear and represent their views.

I say put up or ........... What was the rest of the phrase?

-- Posted by red dog on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 9:51 PM

The 3 year deal brings up several questions. Maybe first year free, get paid the 2nd year. Then when all of this comes to light, and a new mayor coming in--you are guaranteed the pay for that 3rd year. Even if there is a public outcry, and the new mayor-council voids the deal.

Also why does the same man get the contract for city demolitions, snow removal. Friend of the mayor? Low bid? Investigate that situation.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 9:20 PM


Yes.........it is all very, very strange.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 9:03 PM


Your reference to the similar situation with the class III city is an interesting one. Look, I want to give Ms. Latimer the benefit of the doubt; but if this last year of work for no pay had anything to do with any legal opinion, then she has a real problem. After all, she is on the record: "I don't know if it's dedication or ignorance,(but) I love this city". If it was truly because of a legal opinion, then it was neither.

Let's get real. What city administrator, hired after an open, legitimate and legal job search, decides to serve for a year at no pay? It makes no sense to me. If everything was so above board, why should she feel like she has to serve without a salary? After all, the city council has all of the hiring responsibility.

-- Posted by Bcat on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 8:17 PM


I appreciate your willing to throw your hat in the ring. You may even get my vote.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 7:01 PM

Hey Thisguy go to www.marshall-mo.com and there and look under the ordinances button and it will give you all you need to know about running for election to the city council...We all talk about changes and I for one have been reading and studying for just that, I hold a position right now that does not allow political office holding because of a conflict of interest but retirement is just around the corner and I am throwing my name in the hat as soon as possible.


-- Posted by drop555 on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 6:44 PM

Thanks Eric,

But it still seems like a conflict of interest to me. As far as being up to code, whose word are we really supposed to take on that? Trust is hard to gain and easy to lose. Unfortunately I'm afraid I don't know what or who to believe anymore.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 5:17 PM

Is that true Connie? You manage the property that is "Marshall Plaza?" Seems to me in your capacity as City Administrator, your job would be to force the oweners to fix it up or face condemnation. Yes, I would definately say this is a case of conflicting interests.

I guess now that Connie is getting a very tasty salary from the city, we'll be hearing that she has given up the postion as manager of the Marshall Plaza. Even if that were the case, one would have to wonder if it were only because that particular gem had been brought out into the light of day? Furthermore, would it also be within the City Adminstrators scope of duties to already do what those at the MSDC have been trying to do? Was she involved in anyway with the MSDC/MMU building bailout fiasco? I hope these are some of the questions that the newpaper will ask during it's in depth follow-up.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 4:31 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I asked her about the plaza a couple of months ago. She does not own the facility and doesn't have control over how the owners maintain it. As I understand it, her role is something like local representative for the owners. She told me the mall portion is not in violation of city codes, so while it appears shabby, there's little the city can do about it. I'm not sure about the status of the old restaurant building. Will check.

Maybe if all involved in this cluster cared for our city as claimed and wanted the best for our great little towm, all would resign, council included.. kinda looks as it was a group effort, just sayin...think about it people then demand it!!!

-- Posted by Marshall Man on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 4:03 PM


Latimer steps down as mayor, is appointed Marshall city administrator

Monday, February 1, 2010 ~ Updated 5:26 PM


The Marshall City Council accepted the resignation of Marshall Mayor Connie Latimer at its meeting Monday evening, Feb. 1, and then moved to name her as the new city administrator.

ok if the Mayor and City Council approves for the position of city administrator ..... who was our Mayor?? yes Connie so she and city council approved this position? hmmmm....just trying get the full picture here on how these things work out

-- Posted by momandgramma on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 3:40 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
When Connie resigned as mayor, mayor pro tem Lorna Alexander immediately assumed the role of mayor. So it would be accurate to say that council appointed Connie city administrator with Lorna's approval. Connie was no longer mayor at that point.

I agree for a change...So many things shoved under the rugs,lets clean house!

-- Posted by momandgramma on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 3:01 PM

...or successful.

-- Posted by Smart Dog on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 2:34 PM

Ok, let's try this.

The Marshall Plaza certainly doesn't appear to be very well cared for.

-- Posted by Smart Dog on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 2:34 PM

thisguy I will tell you this I will vote for just about anybody that is not in office in my ward.

I wish everyone would consider doing this over the next 3 or 4 election.

To me it is time for a change at City Hall

-- Posted by Gal66 on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 2:29 PM

also, and maybe Eric can answer the first question, i put it out for others on the second. 1. can someone be a write in for city council and 2. would the people of this town give a young family man that wanted only the best for his community a chance to serve them?

-- Posted by thisguy on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 1:58 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I didn't see anything in city ordinances that addresses write-in candidates, but city elections have to follow state election regulations, and write-in candidate rules are spelled out here:


According to the secretary of state's website, the definition of a "write-in candidate" is a person:

" * whose name is not printed on the ballot (see 115.453(4,5,6) RSMo); and

* who has filed a declaration of intent to be a write-in candidate for election to office with the proper election authority prior to 5:00 p.m. on the second Friday immediately preceding the election day. It is not necessary to file a declaration of intent if there are no candidates on the ballot for that office. (see 115.453 (4) RSMo)"

Can someone please explain to me, here in this forum, what Connie Latimer has done for this city, whether in the Mayors position or in any other capacity? What vast improvements have been made to Marshall? We have a downtown that is a corpse so to improve that we give Con-Agra a couple streets so they canmake more pot pies a block from our square. We have a "developement" coorperation that has yet to bring a single job to the area yet still obtains the funding to buy/build spec buildings in the industrial park and then carry no repsonsibility to pay it back and the "city" bails them out. Anyone that stands to defend her, please, name one thing she personally did to improve our town. She never stood up and supported the school bond issue during her tenure as Mayor and I will assume until proof is given otherwise that cutting ribbons and signing papers is the most significant act she made. Charlie was a great city administrator, he listened he acted and he was fair in all he did, but he also knew what he was doing. She was not his student, she did not mirror him in his job. What has she done and why is she qualified for this position making as much as the previous employee made when he left? you tell me and us that and maybe we stop questioning the process in which we gained such a heroic governmental figure.

-- Posted by thisguy on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 1:53 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
This is just my perspective as a reporter who has covered Marshall city government off and on for five years. Connie Latimer worked closely with Charlie Tryban. She was in her office most of the time during business hours. Both were reliable sources of information for me in writing stories about the city, and both seemed very knowledgeable about the workings of the city. I think people may rightly debate whether her experience as mayor is sufficient, but I think it would be inaccurate to say she has no relevant experience.

Obviously, this is a complicated situation. I am sure that some things realated to this story could have been handled better by all involved. I am also sure that City Administrator Latimer has done some positive things for the City of Marshall. But it seems relevant to the conversation that City Administrator Latimer is also the "manager" of the Marshall Plaza. It is not really for me to decide, but this seems like a conflict of interest to me. How does anyone else feel about this?

-- Posted by The Wonderdog on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 1:09 PM


Excellent post! I am not qualified to be city administratior, but if my buddies were willing to throw a $67.500 job at me you can be sure I would take it. Too many people want to equate criticsm of this debacle as a personal affront to Connie.

It's not. Or it least it wasn't but I have to admit that now it is rather personal. I take it personally when my city officials cloak and dagger their way throught the city's business with backrom deals and legal and political maneuvering. I would bet my last dollar this was arranged immdiately after tryban announced hid retiremtn. Shame on you Marshall City council and shame on Connie was well!

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 11:55 AM

Dear What the...

You asked questions about many things; some of those can be answered at city hall. You can ask for a copy of the charter, You can review the budget and you can review state statutes on qualifications for this post, as well as others.

None of those require you to ask questions of a lawyer, or anyone else.

Just saying that there are some answers to some of your questions at that location.

-- Posted by Interested Too on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 11:43 AM


Also part of the previous articles (those from last winter) there were lots of questions asked but few answered. As you will recall from the press reports of the previous administrator's retirement, the mayor herself said they would be holding a thorough search for the replacement. The next you hear from her about the position search is when she reports there have been no qualified candidates and therefore she'd take the bullet and step in herself. Mysteriously missing in all of this is any evidence that the position was posted in any location where one could expect to locate a copy of it...e.g. professional public administration web sites (where such things are posted), colleges with PA programs, the local paper. I could not find a copy anywhere. So how does one do a thorough job search without posting any announcements? Post them to telephone poles around the city block?

And certainly there has to have been some collusion with the city council in this. The rational question when the results of the search committe (which I think was just Latimer but someone can prove me wrong) of there being no qualified candidates should have been surprise and some pointed questions as to what, where, how, the search was done. At least that is what I would have expect the city council to have responded with.

Now if there had been a true search, possibly Latimer could have won. We will never know. And a subtle point as well to the event. Is it usual for there to be a single year contract for the first year of city hire? The article said that they provided Latimer a new 3 year contract. That also plays into the strangeness of the year's work without pay saga...is it usual to start out with one year.

And speaking of legalities, the Missouri Ethics Committee had received a very similar case to the one in Marshall regarding a mayor taking over the city administrater position. In that case they determined that there should have been a year period of time between when the person was mayor and when that person took over as city administrator. The only difference is that the class of city for that specific inquiry was a class III city and Marshall is a class IV city. A moot issue given the issue in question. That is why this mysterious secret one-year contract without pay seems to resonate a bit with me. It has shades of a set-up.

There needs to be transparency in the operation of government; citizens need to see that their elected and hired officials are operating correctly and in their best interest (the citizen's best interest that is.) With all the questions swirling around about this issue it is hard to see that the citizens were openly served in this situation.

-- Posted by oceanlord49 on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 11:43 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I've added a bit more detail here:


but you have some good questions that, yes, were asked last year and I regret that I did not continue pursuing them as I should have.

Sarah is in the process of contacting city officials today and we have a list of questions we'll try to get answered.

Looking forward to the story Eric thanks.

momandgramma you need to be good or you will be in BIG TROUBLE.................LOL

-- Posted by Gal66 on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 11:06 AM

As you apparently know Ms. Latimer well, Cwilli, can you give us a run-down of her qualifications for the job? Apparently our local reporters, or Ms. Latimer herself, are not willing to do so.

As a suggestion, something with a little more substance than "she WILL do Marshall WELL" and "likeable" might silence a few critics. All these statements do is add to the opinion that she got the job due to nothing more than these stated credentials from friends.

Can you state what she does well that will improve the community? Any experience in reigning in public budgets or lowering operating costs for the city? What does she bring to the economic development party? Will she be bringing new ideas and new jobs to Marshall? Any experience or education to help with the tough decisions?

Can department heads and supervisors go ask the boss to draw on experience and education to help them solve problems?

Marshall needs job creation and population growth to fund what most citizens want which is new schools, decreased poverty in the community, and future opportunity for young folks. Please explain how the 'good ol' boy' system of hiring for the most influential job in the city is justified in light of that.

Ms. Latimer caring about Marshall is not enough to justify her hiring. Experience, knowledge of the field, and interpersonal skills are the required background for a leader to excel. It appears that in this case the city council opted for neither of the first two.

I believe these are the issues at the heart of most critics concerns.

-- Posted by Smart Dog on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 11:04 AM

What exactly will they tell us at city hall?

The lawyers said it ok, so it's ok?

Doesn't it bother you that they felt the need to consult lawyers and to defer salaries? Red flag anyone?

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 11:01 AM

Citizens of Marshall,

From on hand experience trying get to the real truth on things that was not done on professional standard ( and I was totally screwed in the end )....

You are beating your heads against a wall that only moves for the right person .... save the knots and pain for another disappointment

I would say it will be covered up again ...

and my other guess is I will be deleted again for my honesty hehe

-- Posted by momandgramma on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 11:01 AM

Eric & Sarah there have been many good questions raised in these comments.

Have you all given any thought to doing a real indepth story about this?

-- Posted by Gal66 on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 10:38 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Yes. We're working on gathering more information.

I think the best suggestion I have heard is for one to express their feelings on the subject at the polls. the other is to go to a council meeting and ask questions. Of course both would require that you get dressed and leave the house. For the most vocal on this blog that will be the real challenge.

-- Posted by Seagarr on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 10:32 AM

I am still amazed at how many people ask questions on this forum, when all they have to do is go down to city hall and have these basic questions answered.

-- Posted by Interested Too on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 9:54 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
I'm glad the questions appear here. While people certainly can and should seek answers themselves if they wish, it's also our job to seek answers to the questions and report them to the community as a whole.

I'm glad she is your friend, unfortunately that is not the point and does not excuse the conduct.

Particularly that of the city council.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 9:51 AM

Connie Latimer is a FRIEND of mine.

I have had professional and personal debates, dialogue, and worship experiences with Ms. Latimer.

Let's move on...she WILL do Marshall WELL.

-- Posted by CWilli on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 9:47 AM

So, regardless of all opinions, can anyone be more specific in supporting the statements about what a wonderful job Ms. Latimer is doing?

I would like to know just what exactly made her such a qualified candidate for the City Manager position that no search for qualified candidates was conducted and no other candidates were interviewed.

Does she have an education in public administration or management? Has she held previous jobs in this field? What exactly made her such an outstanding candidate that the entire search and selection process was abandoned?

I think if anyone could answer these questions with some facts then perhaps the complaints about how and why she was given the job might disappear.

This story as it has played out, including the no salary deal, makes it seem more and more that she had nothing that would qualify her for the job beyond the "likeablility" factor.

And please do not use the fact that she served as our "honorary" mayor for a few years as qualification. In a Council/Administrator form of local government, which is what Marshall has, the mayor is a figurehead with no managerial or administrative responsibliliy.

-- Posted by Smart Dog on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 8:57 AM

My acquaintance with Connie has been a professional one. We don't know each other in social circles.

So over it and moving on.

-- Posted by Amy Crump on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 7:47 AM

I guess if she were a total disaster then it would be ok to question these actions? Sorry, not as far as I'm concerned. Backroom manipulation is unacceptable behavior for any government. Just because the city of Marshall hasn't collasped does not mean this is all ok.

I'll say it again, why would there be a need for lawyers, legal advice and the waiving of salaries if everything were on the up and up? Futhermore we, the citizens are not told of this for a full year? That may be ok with you Amy and I suspect that Connie is a friend of yours, but it's not ok with me.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 7:42 AM

It would be helpful if we all took a step back and separated out two things.

1. Everyone has an opinion on how the appointment was handled and they're entitled to that opinion.

2. Connie has done a good job in the past as mayor, she did a good job this past year as administrator, and she will continue to serve Marshall to the highest ability in the future.

-- Posted by Amy Crump on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 7:00 AM


I don't like secerets in our local goverment period. "Saint Connie" may be a fine person but that is not the point.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 6:30 AM

Geez, remind me to never give you naysayers a gift. The way you operate, suspicion will be your response.

Why did she keep it secret? Because she's not a grandstander and she has the best intentions for Marshall.

-- Posted by Amy Crump on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 6:28 AM

Miss Marple.

Which state statute specifically? I don't believe this is nonsense, I believe the citizens of Marshall have been kept in the dark. I don't like that and I don't care how "nice" Connie is.

This is NOT good government.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Feb 9, 2011, at 5:05 AM

If the council voted to pay her $62k, when did they vote to not pay her? Isn't it a violation of labor laws to not pay her for her labor? Since when can a city administrator rescind a vote of the city council? If she arbitrarily overruled the city council on this how many other things has she overruled the city council on? Why are their so few of us that have see a problem here?

-- Posted by marshall4ever on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 11:05 PM

I really do not beleive she went a year without a salary. Maybe a apart of it but that was also as others have said part of the plan. She ran for mayor knowing charlie was up for retirement and she used the mayors job to get the insight to his position and the requirements. ( smart lady she is). Then when he retired she stepped into his shoes and the ball was rolling to place her in the position, she had all the council's votes already. Resign from mayor have her council appoint her and its done. Problem is this position should have been posted through the state and the starting salary sould not have been the same as charlie was getting after 30 years. There should have been a starting salary of about 70 percent of his. These would raise legal issues anywhere else.

Is she qualified YES...Does she do a good Job YEs.

did she get the job the wrong way YES..


-- Posted by drop555 on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 10:29 PM

According to the relevant statute, there was nothing whatsoever with Latimer taking the job of city manager. It's my belief she has the best interests of Marshall at heart and elected to go without pay as a way of proving that to her critics.

The people posting negative comments here are, as they say, "the usual suspects," always and forever demanding "the truth" be made public and always asserting that every public figure is lying or at the very least not telling the whole truth.

If Latimer wants to go without a salary, what the people of this city ought to be doing is saying THANK YOU!

It's tough enough to get good people to run for office. This kind of nonsense only makes it harder.

-- Posted by Miss Marple on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 10:24 PM

got to love small town politics... wanna be big town politicos ARE running this town

-- Posted by mrxray on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 9:54 PM

The report from KMMO on this matter referenced a press conference after the meeting. I'm curious as to who from the city took part in it. Was the MDN represented? If so, were questions asked and answered about the process?

-- Posted by Bcat on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 9:31 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
The news conference was attended by Connie Latimer, Sarah Reed and me of MDN and Ken Lewellen of KMMO.

I would not want to be on the City Council and have to answer to questions of ethics regarding this issue. This is a very strange way to handle hiring a city manager.

-- Posted by izaak on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 9:15 PM

I have nothing personal against Connie but you have to ask yourself some questions. Why was this heroic effort on Connie's part not mentioned from the get go?

This is OUR city government and this is an extremely questionable situation. Why should they need lawyers and legal advice only to grace us with a revelation of "sacrifice" a full year after the fact?

If you can't or won't see that then that is up to you but as far as I'm concerned but this is totally unacceptable.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 8:57 PM

There's just no pleasing some people. The same people were hollering last year, and now that they discover Latimer served a year without a salary at all AND paid her own health insurance, they're still hollering. Ridiculous, just nothing but ridiculous.

-- Posted by Miss Marple on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 7:45 PM

Ms. Latimer is an upstanding woman. I think that the residents of Marshall should be more appreciative of the work she does on behalf of the community.

-- Posted by Owl12345 on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 7:31 PM

I am also very disappointed with the council. I will remember that next election.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 7:23 PM

This whole situation is wrong on SO many levels.

If everything were on the up and up from the beginning then why would they ever feel the need to even ask for legal advice?

-- Posted by What the f...... on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 7:19 PM

"Latimer later said that the council sought legal advice before the change and everything was legitimate."

The story dated 2/1/2010 made no mention of any legal advice; only their decision to hire her based on her filling after Tryban's retirement. Perhaps that's one reason why the story generated 58 comments, mine included. In my comment, I stated that I wondered where our City Attorney, Don Stouffer stood on this issue. I ASKED if he had offered an opinion to the council. I also ASKED if he had been consulted on the matter. Eric, you replied: "Do you have a specific question or concern? Do you believe the council or former mayor violated city ordinance? We'd be glad to ask Mr. Stouffer his opinion."

Well, My concern was that this decision was arrived at without any consultation with the City Attorney. The question that I would have, in addition to the two already posed a year ago, would be from whom did the council seek legal advice.

Obviously Ms. Latimer is free to refuse a salary is she wishes. I suppose another question that comes to mind is: did she serve without a salary for a year upon legal advice?

-- Posted by Bcat on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 7:10 PM

You got it WTF, if it don't smell right 99% of time it ain't right. Ever notice how a lot of stuff that happens around here has a funny smell??

-- Posted by Marshall Man on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 2:58 PM

Also, why are we only hearing about this a year later? Something definately doesn't smell right.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 10:44 AM

I am glad that Ms. Latimer is going to get paid this year. Somehow having the person in charge of the day-to-day affairs of the city working for free makes no sense.

That said, I have to say that the fact she went without a salary for the year is just another strange tidbit in what was an already bizarre personnel action taken to fill the position. Seriously Eric, what are the reasons as to why a salary not given? (If she loves Marshall as she states, why not another year for free?) There certainly is a back story to this that should see the light of day. Supposedly Ms. Latimer was the best and brightest candidate of that wide-spread candidate search that was going to be conducted. Was a zero salary a reflection that she was not really qualified? Did she feel she was not qualified and went this route as a means to gain on-the-job experience? Or was this some sort of means to get around Missouri Ethics guidelines by not having Ms. Latimer in a 'paid' position and thereby being able to skirt the intent of the guidance? Given how the whole mayor-to-city administrator saga unfolded, its strange that this salary tidbit made it to the light of day. Since it has, it clearly begs more questions. And why was this strange financial arrangement not made public before now?

And regarding the salary provided, isn't that what Marshall was paying the prior city administrator only 13 months ago who had been in the job for how many years? Given the current economic environment, providing the same figure to Ms. Latimer seems very generous for a person with just one-year of unpaid experience in the position.

How about some additional details please.


-- Posted by oceanlord49 on Tue, Feb 8, 2011, at 10:24 AM

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