October 13, 2015

53° Fair

Pay up Palmertree

Published 10:00 am Wednesday, May 28, 2014

It’s time for former Circuit Clerk Shelly Ashley-Palmertree to pay the proverbial piper.
After the long-embattled clerk was removed from office last week because she had listed her address in Madison County, State Auditor Stacey Pickering announced that his office was demanding every penny she had withdrawn from her office’s civil and criminal fee account while she was not residing in the jurisdiction from which she was elected.
The total added by Pickering’s office was $229,880.01 — truly down to the penny. The demand brings the total sought from Ashley-Palmertree to more than $1 million.
We appreciate Pickering’s office for looking out for our county’s taxpayers and can only hope that the money is returned.
While much of the former clerk’s debt remains in legal dispute, we feel that this portion will be difficult if not impossible to fight.
State law sets forth rigorous guidelines about residency, and if what the Office of the State Auditor says is true — and we assume it is because Ashley-Palmertree put up no legal fight over being removed from office — it seems to us that our former clerk certainly is on the line for this more than a quarter million dollar debt.
Shelly Ashley-Palmertree, you hold the key to resolving this sticky situation. Give the county its money back.
We’ve asked you multiple times to step down from office, but you didn’t listen. We beg that you please heed our call and return the money you took while not residing in our county.
Such an act certainly is shameful, but lets get this nasty chapter behind us. The taxpayers of Warren County are ready. Are you?