Ray of Sunshine in Arnold

4 Jul

Several members of the Arnold City Council are sycophants of Bob Sweeney, whom local activist and former councilman Matt Hay calls “the corrupt, Rasputin-like City Attorney.” Sweeney is famous for billing full-time hours for part time work, for using red-light camera cash to get his cronies elected in order to get his job back after he rightly was fired, and corruption on behalf of local unions. But now, one councilwoman is fighting to shed some light in Arnold, and she is being opposed tooth and nail.

As she details here, Doris Borgelt has worked to get Arnold to follow its own rules and to act in a fair, impartial manner. The issue of access to the visitor sign-in logs at City Hall has become the focus of recent action on this issue. Borgelt says that this information is public record, and it is hard to argue otherwise. But that doesn’t stop Sweeney and his cronies. Sweeney laughably says that keeping the records secret is a privacy issue. In a vote, the council decided to keep the logs secret. Surprisingly, Cricky Lang sided with Borgelt on this issue.

Borgelt then contacted the state Attorney General’s office, which then recommended that Arnold release the logs, which “meet the definition of a retained record,” according to the June 28 Leader. The AG also asked for a copy of the logs. The city responded, in a remarkable display of defiance, with a copy of the logs that had every name redacted. Laughably, Sweeney said he hopes that will satisfy the AG. The hubris is unbelievable. A short summary is available here.

Sweeney, who by now should be a professional comedian, complains that Borgelt’s actions have cost the city five figures’ worth of his time. Again, this is the guy who lives to extract every billable hour out of the city that he can, so for him to suggest he cares about the city’s finances is risible. As Borgelt correctly states, “It wouldn’t cost the city anything if they just turned it over and stopped trying to hide everything.”

There seems to be no end in sight to Sweeney’s swindles, as the voters in Arnold keep electing his stooges, and few challengers rise to oppose them. One can only hope that the local FBI office has its eye on Arnold, and is preparing a case against Sweeney as we speak.

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2 Responses to “Ray of Sunshine in Arnold”

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  1. Headline Editorializing « Jefferson County Penknife - July 5, 2012

    […] a postscript to my last post, about the open records disputes in Arnold, the Leader article on the topic was part of a trend I’ve noticed at the paper. Whenever […]

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  2. Missouri AG Comes Down Hard on Arnold « Jefferson County Penknife - July 22, 2012

    […] wrote recently about the efforts of the city government in Arnold to keep its city hall sign-in logs private. When we last left off, the city was waiting for the state Attorney General’s response […]

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