Audit: Crawford County town made too much revenue from traffic tickets

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by Russell Kinsaul / News 4 and Dan Greenwald / KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on May 8, 2014 at 5:21 PM

Updated Thursday, May 8 at 5:36 PM

(KMOV.com) – A Crawford County town was recently cited by the state of Missouri for making too much money from traffic tickets.

A recently released state audit showed the city of Bourbon was breaking state law. Under Missouri law, a city is only supposed to make 30 percent of its revenue off tickets. Bourbon had reported that 30 percent of its revenue did come from tickets, but the audit showed traffic tickets were a larger source of revenue.

“There were mistakes here at city hall," Bourbon Mayor Leonard Armstrong said.

At one time, police officers would write tickets on I-44, but city officers are forbidden from doing so. Armstrong told News 4 his city’s officers will no longer write tickets on the interstate and revenue will suffer as a result.

Instead, Bourbon is cutting its police force to save money. The police chief recently resigned and another officer was laid off. Missouri law requires Bourbon pay the state all the money it made off traffic tickets that was over the 30 percent limit.

City officials told News 4 Bourbon Is considering a plan to outsource its police work to nearby towns or Crawford County, but the towns that were contacted have not replied to Bourbon’s request.

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