ELLISVILLE, Mo. (KMOX) – It’s not yet clear exactly how much money an audit of the City of Ellisville will cost taxpayers but the mayor says it is necessary after the apparent destruction of hundreds of files and emails from the city manager’s computer.
After City Manager Kevin Bookout was suspended by the Ellisville City Council on Sept. 11, Councilman Gary Voss says someone came into Ellisville City Hall and deleted the files. The building did not have security cameras at the time.
Bookout was fired on October 28. KMOX News filed several Sunshine Act requests for Bookout’s emails during the first week of September but was told those emails don’t exist.
Mayor Adam Paul calls it a stressful situation and says the request for bids has gone out to audit companies.
The Missouri Highway Patrol announced in mid-November that it would investigate but Paul says they may have bigger concerns.
“They’re investigating murders and bi-state prostitution rings and so this may or may not fall into the parameters of what they’re capable of moving forward with,” the mayor said.
Paul says he will await the findings of the Highway Patrol’s preliminary investigation before moving forward.
Last week, the Ellisville City Council unanimously approved a plan to audit the city but several members abstained from voting. According to Paul, some city council members disagreed with his decision to seek an audit but he defends the plan, saying “this isn’t something you cover up, this is something that you release to the public.”
Paul says the city needs to know what was deleted, who deleted it, and if the files can be recovered.