Orrick's city clerk fired amid criminal investigation - KCTV5

Orrick's city clerk fired amid criminal investigation

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Residents of Orrick are waiting to hear if they were swindled by the person collecting their bills. Residents of Orrick are waiting to hear if they were swindled by the person collecting their bills.
ORRICK, MO (KCTV) -

Residents of Orrick are waiting to hear if they were swindled by the person collecting their bills.

The Orrick city clerk was fired Dec. 18, according to city attorney Kevin Baldwin, due to concerns about city finances.

"The issues that came up were brought to light by two council members," Baldwin said.

Baldwin addressed the matter after the rumor mill in the town of 800-900 people began expanding.

Heather Hurshman came to Monday's board of aldermen meeting, worried about what she has heard and how it could be affecting her.

"I had a dog that ran loose and I had $300 worth of fines, and I paid cash," Hurshman said.

"Was that payment recorded?" she asked the board.

She also asked them about water bills she deemed high.

"I'm not the only person in Orrick that's been questioning it," Hurshman said.

The city attorney said some rumors and concerns circulating are unfounded.

"Some of the rumors have been that water bills were inflated," Baldwin said. "We've done an investigation. We haven't found any that were artificially inflated."

Another rumor, he said, involved water bills or court fines paid but not credited. Residents worried they could get utilities disconnected or warrants issued as a result.

Baldwin said the preliminary investigation shows that payments made were recorded as paid, which he hoped would ease some of residents' immediate concerns.

Baldwin did, however, confirm that  there were sufficient irregularities to refer the concerns to outside law enforcement for investigation.

"It's been referred to two separate agencies at this time and there's no indication as to which will actually conduct the full investigation," Baldwin said.

He held out hope that the concerns end up being unfounded.

"That would be best for all involved," Baldwin said.  "But there are enough issues that do raise concern that we felt it was more appropriate that matters be looked into by an outside agency That way nobody could ever point their finger at the Board of Aldermen or the local police chief and say, you didn't do your job."

Hurshman was only somewhat reassured.

"I'm glad to see something's finally getting done," she said.  "But I mean Orrick's just Orrick, so we'll see."

KCTV5 is not naming the former clerk because she has not yet been charged with a crime. She did tell KCTV5 that she had no comment on the matter.

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