SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Controversial emails sent by Greene County Commissioner Bob Cirtin urging employees to campaign for a 1/2 cent sales tax are being investigated by a law firm in Kansas City hired by the county.
KOLR10 revealed to you Tuesday what those emails involved Cirtin making a list of various groups that he would ask to support the tax.
The investigation will determine if any of the emails were against the law.
The investigation is still in the early stages and it’s yet to be determined if Cirtin actually executed anything that he wrote in the emails.
“We will not only look at the September 15th email, which is understandably what the news media is focused on right now, we’ll actually go through and ask questions about all the different activities on that email, ask about other emails that followed this one that nobody’s asking questions about, but in which the commissioner explains his view of what he can and and can not do under the law,” says investigator, Eddie Greim.
Investigators are looking into whether or not Bob Cirtin made campaigning for the tax a part of county employees’ employment, but even if it’s not the case, he says using work email to request it could be a violation.
Greim also says that it’s still yet to be determined if Cirtin used state resources to do the work that a PAC would normally do.
Greim explains how the Sunshine Law applies to Cirtin’s email of having meetings not open to the public.
“You can not have unnoticed meetings that involve the majority of the commissioners and so I think he was trying to avoid that because there’s case law that says even if you think you’re discussing a private matter or a matter that’s not official county business once you have the majority of the commissioners it makes it much easier to argue that’s actually unwittingly an open meeting,” says Greim.
Greim will make a recommendation to county commissioners within a week and from there it’s up to them if they want to pursue the investigation.
As it stands now, Attorney Eddie Greim says it’s unknown if Cirtin could face any disciplinary action.
Also KOLR10 tried reaching out to Bob Cirtin for a comment, but he referred us to the investigator.