Sweeney Offers a Weak Justification

4 Feb

I have been asking during the past two weeks, as I have discussed the ballot-access shenanigans perpetrated by Bob Sweeney, what his justification is for such blatant political opportunism. I figured he would cite some change in law that explained why his tax-delinquent cronies could stay on the ballot in 2011, but his non-cronies had to be removed from the ballot in 2013. Well, thanks to Arnold Patch, we have his answer:

“We recently learned that a portion of the personal property tax, specifically the road and bridge line item, goes to the city,” Sweeney said. “It is in effect a city tax [Shaun] Missey owed that we did not get.”

Patch asked Sweeney if he was aware of the city receiving taxes from the road and bridge fund in 2011. Sweeney said, “At the time, I didn’t know anything about city taxes coming from the road and bridge line item.”

So it was a mere oversight. A very convenient oversight. If this is true, this is at least the second time Sweeney has provided poor-quality legal services to the city of Arnold, the first being his flawed Sunshine Law advice that prompted the threat of a lawsuit from the Missouri Attorney General in June 2012. These instances call into question Sweeney’s capabilities, and provide grounds for his termination. The City of Arnold clearly can’t trust his legal advice.

Sweeney’s attempted justification does not explain why, despite the clear reading of the statute in question, the city clerk, instead of the state Department of Revenue, made the decision to ax Shaun Missey from the ballot (if in fact the law does apply to municipalities). He could be trying to rely in RSMo 115.346, which covers late municipal tax payments, but makes no mention of who the enforcing authority is. But his claim that the personal property tax is a municipal tax is weak. Couldn’t one claim that a candidate must be investigated to determine if he is current on his state and federal income taxes, as surely some of that money makes it back to Arnold?

Can’t we also assume that Byrnes Mill receives road and bridge money from the personal property tax? Because the mayor there is being allowed to run for re-election, despite paying her 2012 personal property taxes late. Also, what money does the North Jefferson County Ambulance District get from the personal property tax, since Sweeney had a candidate removed from the ballot there, too?

Sweeney has more explaining to do, hopefully before a judge, as Missey is exploring taking legal action.


One Response to “Sweeney Offers a Weak Justification”


  1. Property Tax Time | Jefferson County Penknife - December 2, 2013

    […] is in favor of liberty and small, open, and ethical government, PAY YOUR TAXES. If you don’t, your candidacy will end prematurely. Pay them right away, and maybe do it in person and get a receipt (funny […]


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