The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

November 13, 2012

Commission, sheriff battles continue

By Susan Redden
sredden@joplinglobe.com

— Attempts at negotiation aimed at settling outstanding bills for prisoner boarding went nowhere on Tuesday in an often-contentious meeting between the Jasper County Commission, Sheriff Archie Dunn and attorneys for both sides.

 Bill Fleischaker, attorney for Dunn, asked the commission to authorize negotiations toward paying the outstanding bills including one from Henry County, which has filed a lawsuit against Jasper County and the sheriff. Commissioners did not take up the matter after Norman Rouse, attorney for the panel, advised against Fleischaker’s request.

The decision came after the commission held a meeting that was closed for attorney-client communications in a lawsuit. Bonnie Earl, county clerk, was not allowed in the meeting to take minutes, but Randee Kasier, sheriff-elect after defeating Dunn, was called into the session for a time.

The two sides also could not come to agreement on payment of a bill owed for computer maintenance in the sheriff’s office. And the commission tabled action on a budget amendment that, among other things, would pay for employee raises for the remainder of the year, after Fleischaker asked if time would be allowed for public review and comment.