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Ellisville Mayor Suspended From Office

The city council voted 5-0 to adopt a resolution suspending Mayor Adam Paul for 45 days so a hearing can be convened presenting allegations that he violated the city charter and should be removed from office.

In front of a council chamber filled to capacity, the Ellisville Council voted 5-0 to suspend Mayor Adam Paul from office for 45 days while an investigation is launched into allegations that he should be removed from the post permanently.

The vote followed emotional comments from more than a dozen residents, all of whom spoke in support of Paul and accused the council's actions of being politically motivated.

The complaint against Paul took the form of a resolution drafted by the City Attorney Paul Martin and included charges that he violated sunshine laws by disclosing confidential details and drank on the job.

(View the attached PDF for a complete list of the charges)

The council also used the special meeting to set a hearing date for March 20 in which two attorneys selected by the city will present the allegations contained in the complaint. The council will then make a decision on whether or not they merit Paul’s removal from office and that decision will be forwarded to the St. Louis Circuit Court for review.

Council Member Linda Reel was absent from the meeting. Reel had previously been the sole dissenting vote when the council moved to draft the resolution approved Wednesday.

Paul vowed to fight the allegations and strenuously denied the accusation that he had drank vodka on several occasions while at City Hall. Elected as an opponent to public financing for a Walmart project, Paul said he had been targeting "from day one."

"Ultimately, I will have my fair shot in the circuit courts, but not with the kangaroo court that the council got me," he said.

During the meeting, Paul contented that the accusations contained in the resolution were vague and that the council was being asked to vote on something without him having a chance to refute the charges or understand where they were coming from. 

“You better have some damn evidence if you are going to call me a belligerent alcoholic,” he said. “You make me look like a monster, sir.”

Interviewed by media after the meeting, Martin said the evidence supporting the allegations contained in the resolution will come out at the March 20 hearing and Paul will have a chance to refute them. He also addressed concerns raised by citizens that action taken against the mayor was personal and political.

“I have nothing against the mayor,” he said. “The question is whether or not the charges are true.”

A Flurry of Legal Manuvers

On Wednesday, Paul’s lawyer filed a motion in St. Louis County Circuit Court that would have prevented the council from removing him from office. According to a story in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Paul’s lawyer, Chet Pleban, said the effort is politically driven and based on Paul’s opposition to public financing for the construction of a Walmart.

Reached Wednesday afternoon, Martin did not comment on any of the specific allegations from the filing, but said a judge refused to grant the order at a 3 p.m. hearing held that day. The ruling cleared the way for the vote to suspend Paul.

Council member Michelle Murray initiated the process to have the city council review whether Paul should be removed from office in the wake of unrelated complaints that he overstepped his authority and violated the city charter.

The complaint against Paul was filed two weeks ago, claiming that the mayor violated the city charter by ordering police to remove a member of the public from meeting premises on two separate occasions, most recently at a Feb. 6 council meeting.

The charter enforcement commission, consisting of Murray and council members Dawn Anglin and Linda Reel, unanimously voted to recommend to the council to dismiss the claim on Monday night.

However, at a council meeting the following Wednesday, Murray then requested Martin draft a resolution based on a provision of the city charter that allows the council to review the qualifications of any of its members, including the mayor.

JoanLauterbach February 28, 2013 at 02:08 PM
As an Ellisville Citizen, I personally do not want Wal Mart at the corner of Clarkson and Manchester Road. There is enough traffic congestion in that area already. We have a HUGE Wal Mart just aprox. 5 miles from here at 141 and Manchester where it sets back away from the traffic. Besides, I think that K Mart is satisfactory for quick shopping if need be.
Ellisville Walmart hater February 28, 2013 at 02:19 PM
Mayor Paul was treated like dirt since day one. The PIrrello cronies just disrespect him - are they jealous because the majority of the people in Ellisville voted for him? Or, because Mayor Paul is against all the TIF and WalMart and Pirrello cronies cry wolf all the time. Grow up - we are adults! Or, are the district council members getting a kickback for voting for TIF?
Daddy D February 28, 2013 at 04:28 PM
Why does everyone hate Walmart? Everyone is complaining about it but yet you will probably shop their
Caffeinated February 28, 2013 at 04:33 PM
>>"Why does everyone hate Walmart? Everyone is complaining about it but yet you will probably shop their" I, for one, dislike Walmart because it attracts people who don't understand the proper usage of the possessive form of the word 'they' when not used as an attributive adjective for a noun. There... I said it.
Ellisville Walmart hater February 28, 2013 at 04:46 PM
RE Walmart - I owned a small business in a rural area and people would say to me that they could save a dime (10 cents) at Walmart; however, they had a 45 minute drive...go figure!! Anyway, who is paying for all of this, well, of course, the citizens. Just like any other area that received TIF, the consumer pays an additional sales tax, check your receipt!!!!
E. Schmidt February 28, 2013 at 05:25 PM
And then there's this... http://www.peopleofwalmart.com/ and closer to home, this... http://www.peopleofwalmart.com/category/location/mo/?state=1 Yep. That's Missouri, folks...our city council has some "vizzun," no? ....and the mobile meth labs... On the corporate side there's the begging for corporate welfare...low wages...bad or no benefits...loss of manufacturing...closure of surrounding small businesses...draining of dollars out of our community to Bentonville, AK...so forth and so on... A real "bargain"... a great "deal" for Ellisville. It only cost $11 Million.
Mike K February 28, 2013 at 06:45 PM
After they have left office, they will receive a very personally lucrative "consultation" contract from Sansone to help them "develop" the very TIF taxpayer giveaways they will shove through the city council in the Mayor's absence. And since they will be receiving these kickbacks after they have left office, there is no Charter violations to worry about. Connecting the dots now? And Paul Martin couldn't prosecute his way out of a paper bag with a chainsaw, even if he was ordered to go after the former council members for fraud and conspiracy, which equals racketeering. Can anyone say "RICO"?
Mike K February 28, 2013 at 06:50 PM
@Caffeinated: Oh noes! At least you didn't use the plu perfect subjunctive form for seeking an unspecified partner to perform coitus with and tell him to get scrod.
Mike K February 28, 2013 at 10:00 PM
In other words, if one could save, say a dime (10 cents), by shopping across the street at KMart, it would be because my receipt won't have that additional sales tax (the TIF) on it. Got it.
JoanLauterbach March 01, 2013 at 12:24 AM
If and when Wal Mart gets hold in Ellisville, we who have openly opposed can and will Boycott...
mike k March 01, 2013 at 01:52 AM
what childish behavior. Bet you used to hold your breath and turn blue when you didn't get your way as a kid.
Mike K March 01, 2013 at 08:40 PM
Why is it that the Council has the votes to remove a duly elected sitting Mayor, but apparently does not have the votes to simply override his opposition? What is it about what is going on in our City Government that Pirrello, Murray, Anglin, and Pieper have planned with their current 4-3 majority on any City Council business that is so important that they not lose that control at any cost - even the destruction of the city's reputation, the respect for the voters that elected both Mayor Paul *and* them, and the use of the Charter to wipe their collective posteriors with as they flush the Office of Mayor down the drain? What is buried in the past resolutions and ordinances that puts something so important at risk when Murray, Anglin, and Pieper are no longer on the council? And if they have acted in such a manner, in the name of the city, why have the people not been informed of any such future commitments? Could it be some future personal payment for "services rendered"? I believe that is called corruption and bribery. I'm pretty sure that's not allowed in the Charter, and is far, far, more egregious than Mayor Paul dropping a few f-bombs in a closed meeting, failing to ask the City Manager's permission to eject a disruptive attendee at City Council meetings which, by Charter, he is charged with maintaining order, drinking from a thermos, asking for letterhead, or any of the other trivial "violations" Mayor Paul is "alleged" to have committed.
Caffeinated March 01, 2013 at 08:52 PM
Little mikey, we all wish you'd hold your breath and turn blue. You should try it.
Stephanie R. March 03, 2013 at 05:17 PM
For a more real story with facts than the Patch could ever write, check out John Hoffmann's coverage. http://www.johnhoffmann.net/
Mike K March 03, 2013 at 06:59 PM
He touches on many of the items I've pointed out here. One item he didn't comment on was Mayor Paul's efforts to seek out and nominate candidates for the position of City Attorney, one of the additional duties he is specifically called upon to perform in the Charter (Article 4.1(b)(6): "Place in nomination for consideration of the Council nominees for the positions of City Attorney, ..." and "The Council by resolution may also provide for such nominations to be made by its other members" (meaning the District Members). That pretty clearly states that, barring a resolution, the Mayor is the only Council member that can place ANY nominee into consideration for the position of City Attorney. Doing so approaching the renewal of the current City Attorney's contract expiration is the Mayor's explicit DUTY per the Charter. One of the repeated allegations against the Mayor is Article 3.4(c): INTERFERENCE WITH ADMINISTRATION. "Except for the purpose of inquiry, information, or investigation as established by Article Three, Section 3.11" Inquiring about or seeking information about potential candidates for the Mayor to place into nomination for the position of City Attorney seems to me to be clearly within this article's authorized activities. Section 3.11 states "The Council may make investigations into the affairs of the City." The Mayor is a full and equal member of the City Council per Article 3.2(a). The Mayor is merely doing what the people that elected him.
mike k March 03, 2013 at 07:19 PM
By the way someone (a union thug no doubt) after the meeting Wednesday thought it would be fun to swing by my villa in the dead of the night and slash the tires on my car. Fortunately he/she only got one before I suppose they were scared off. Now the anti Walmart crowd, because they didn't get their way at the meeting, think it is OK to resort to violence against those with whom they disagree. Nice.
Mike K March 03, 2013 at 08:06 PM
You should probably leave the detective work to the Police Department. And so should the City Attorney, for that matter. And don't call your council member because s/he will need the City Manager's permission to actually do anything for you. Are you sure that you and Ronaiah Tuiasosopo aren't twins separated at birth?
E. Schmidt March 03, 2013 at 09:04 PM
little mike k, >>>By the way someone (a union thug no doubt) ...<<< That list of someones could be anyone of 4,500+ people in Ellisville who make below the median $88,000 and/or who are non-white, and/or gay, and/or disabled, and/or seniors, and/or retired on a fixed income, and all their families and/or friends. Wow!...That’s quite a list of suspects. You never did respond to Big Shopper’s? question regarding whether or not you hate the blind and/or crippled children. So, no sense in adding them to the list. Going forward you can now add to the list: the weight challenged (men and women)…Union members (active and retired) and the three people? (their families and/or friends) you hit with your race car - should you ever find your tires slashed again. That list is probably longer than Nixon’s…
Caffeinated March 03, 2013 at 09:51 PM
Perhaps they were just worried that you'd go "racing," and wanted to prevent you from hitting more innocents with your car. I don't think the unions care, though your awesome union thugs charge reminds me of Perrillo's "truth" website: http://ellisvilletruth.wordpress.com/ ...wherein he subtitles the site: 'Don't be fooled by the lies and bullied by union thuggery' It's like you two share a brain or something.
mike k March 04, 2013 at 12:35 AM
what next? firebomb my villa?
Caffeinated March 04, 2013 at 12:43 AM
Little mikey is under attack! I'm assuming you filled out a police report? Right? Not that I'm calling you a liar, but you've been known to lie. About everything.
Mike K March 04, 2013 at 12:48 AM
Stop feeding the trolls.
Caffeinated March 04, 2013 at 01:00 AM
I can't help myself. I find little mikey's malignant narcissism hilarious. He's a walking textbook of neuroticism and latent homosexuality...
E. Schmidt March 04, 2013 at 12:12 PM
Didn't see such a report of auto vandalism/slashed tires in the Ellisville Patch police round-up. Draw your own conclusions.
E. Schmidt March 04, 2013 at 12:35 PM
FWIW, in any arson investigation, the property owner is usually suspect #1. Good luck with that.
E. Schmidt March 04, 2013 at 12:59 PM
New Alerts pushed to the desktop are a wonderful thing. http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/metro/ellisville-mayor-at-odds-with-council-from-day-one/article_aed2bec7-f18d-5d99-931c-65492fd8f5c3.html
Mike K March 04, 2013 at 01:10 PM
Is this true? I thought we did NOT have a tear down clause due to a lapse on the part of the City Attorney, Mr. Martin. @PostDispatch: "But one provision in the city’s contract stipulates that if Walmart leaves and its building remains unoccupied for more than 12 months, the retailer will pay to have the structure razed."
E. Schmidt March 04, 2013 at 01:30 PM
Big Mike K, The Tear Down clause is meaningless without a Demolition Bond/Fund. And the "tear down" is not automatic. For all their chest puffing by the City Council about the clause, they didn't do the one thing which would make it actually work for us - bond fund the demolition. At best this was an oversight or bad negotiating; at worst, negligence or intention disregard. Bushyhead, the atty. for Walmart, at the Conditional Use Public Hearing told us the City Council would have to sue Walmart to get the building down when I questioned her on this very issue. This discussion is on tape and in transcript form. And since there is no funding mechanism, who pays???
E. Schmidt March 04, 2013 at 01:38 PM
Walmart also agreed to dioxin testing based on my comments/questions. [ Also on tape and in transcript form. ] Have they done it yet? Where are those results? What are the results?
E. Schmidt March 04, 2013 at 03:06 PM
Demolition Bond Funds...Hardly a new or radical idea. http://www.gongol.com/research/economics/demolitionbonds/ In some states, munis, towns and townships you can't even put up a cell phone or relay tower on leased land without posting a demolition bond...because they have fallen once decommissioned (and the owner stopped maintenance,) wrecking crops and killing cows.

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