Misuse of Recorder Fund

June 3rd I emailed this information to members of St. Louis City Democratic Central Committee.

Sharon Carpenter misuses a special fund- established by state law for technology and record preservation- as an expense account.

Section 59.319.1 RSMO and 59.800.1 RSMO require the fund- monies from fees on document recording and copies- to be used “for record storage, microfilming, and preservation, including anything necessarily pertaining thereto” and “exclusively for the purchase, installation, upgrade and maintenance of modern technology necessary to operate the recorder’s office in an efficient manner”.

Some of the expenditures which obviously do not qualify as technology or preservation related include:

1/14/2009 Check 1853 $102.00 to Rent A Center for something related to Presidential Inaugural

8/24/2009 Debit Card $2,378.04 to HDC Home Decorators for rugs for the Recorder and Chief Deputy Recorder’s offices

6/10/2010 Check 1946 $170.00 to Kiel Parking for parking for an intern

3/25/2013 Debit Card $94.41 to Joanies to Go for a Staff Meeting

9/30/2013 Check 2079 $75.00 to Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority for “Mayor Luncheon Meeting” with note “Travel:Legislation”

A Total of $493.53 spent on “City Hall Open House Nov 2” “Mayor Open House” with note “Office Supplies” including
10/30/2013 Debit Card $45.00 to “Gooey Butter”
10/30/2013 Debit Card $11.59 to Wal-Mart
10/30/2013 Debit Card $306.47 to Hobby Lobby
10/30/2013 Debit Card $99.97 to “Gordmans Architectura”
10/30/2013 Debit Card $30.50 to Pint Size Bakery & Coffee

This is just a sample of the inappropriate spending. There are a lot of travel/food related expenses, including trips to visit a technology vendor and “legislation” meetings, and office renovations paid for with this account. I am still reviewing the information and will get back with you on what I find.

Sharon took a month to respond to my Sunshine request for information on this special fund and she billed me $280 in clerical services to create a spreadsheet instead of just copying the checks. I asked to pick it up but she sent it by Fed Ex. More money wasted.

When I am Recorder, the technology and preservation account information will be published on the Recorder website- complete transparency.

Edward McFowland 314-600-1261
Democratic Candidate for Recorder of Deeds

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