St. Louis County executive calls for firing of auditor

Mark Tucker (Credit: KMOV)

Some St. Louis County leaders say it's time to re-write local laws, in order to protect your tax dollars.

Last year, a News 4 investigation questioned one city employee about whether he's qualified to do the job.

One St. Louis County councilman says he wants voters to decide in November whether or not to tighten the requirements for county auditor, after some say the man hired for the position, simply cannot do the job.

“You are dealing with someone who quite literally can't audit the county,” said County Executive Steve Stenger.

Stenger says auditor Mark Tucker should never have been hired in the first place.

Tucker is not an accountant and had previously been a political consultant.

A News 4 investigation last year revealed Tucker often came to work at odd hours, or not at all.

St. Louis County taxpayers are paying an individual $85,000 a year who does not audit the county and he's the auditor.

Tucker has produced a small handful of reports, posted to the auditor's website. But Stenger says they're not real audits in the sense that they do not comb through financial records or data.

“He said the animals in our shelter appeared to be sadder than animals in other shelters,” Stenger said.

Now Councilman Mark Harder wants to change the county charter to require the auditor to have a proper professional designation for the job, like CPA.

Harder told News 4 it's a way to solve the situation in the future.

But Stenger says Tucker should simply be fired and replaced.

A ballot initiative, he says, is unnecessary.

“It's really another waste of taxpayer money, I would estimate that it's $100,000 to put something like this on the ballot,” Stenger said.

County Council Chair Sam Page says that Tucker's reports did make significant findings.

"His audit finding that the County leases or owns a million square feet of empty office space was alarming," Page wrote.

He says, though, he would support raising standards for the position but said it could be done without a charter amendment.

Copyright 2018 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

News 4 Investigates

Recommended for you