Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Ellisville Mayor Is Suspended; Council Will Meet March 20 to Consider Paul's Ouster

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Ellisville Mayor Is Suspended; Council Will Meet March 20 to Consider Paul's Ouster

Article excerpt

ELLISVILLE He was only minutes away from being pushed out of office, but Mayor Adam Paul couldnt help but offer up a half smile when he looked over the room.

Filling the council chambers were dozens of supporters, many wearing stickers that bore his initials.

Paul, 32, was about to be formally accused of a litany of offenses from drinking on the job to disclosing confidential city information but he seemed to want to keep the moment light.

Its a tough night for me, as you might imagine, he said, as he opened a specially called meeting Wednesday night.

Then, nearly 20 people implored the City Council not to pass a resolution that would suspend Paul for up to 45 days and, pending the outcome of an investigation, lead to his permanent ouster.

The evidence against Paul, they argued, was fabricated and motivated by politics and hard feelings over the mayors oppostion to a controversial Walmart project.

You are running roughshod over us, said resident Julia Dolan. We voted for him. I resent you guys for taking away our vote.

In the end, their pleas mattered little.

The council unanimously passed the resolution with no debate. A hearing was scheduled for March 20 to decide whether Paul should be permanently removed from office. The hearing will be just two weeks before a municipal election that could change the balance of power on the council.

They need their kangaroo court to convict him, said Lynette Petruska, one of Pauls attorneys.

An 11-page resolution, written by City Attorney Paul Martin, accuses Paul of, among other things, giving illegal orders to employees, secretly recording conversations in an effort to intimidate city employees and repeatedly drinking and using profanity on the job.

Paul has denied all the allegations except for one. Petruska said the mayor admitted to using an off-color word for excrement at a closed city meeting.

Earlier on Wednesday, Paul had filed a court order to stop the meeting. But St. Louis County Circuit Court Judge Brenda Stith Loftin sided against him. The judge agreed with Martin that the courts did not have the right to interfere with the impeachment process as laid out in the citys charter. …

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