The Star's editorial | Inept oversigh...

The Star's editorial | Inept oversight in a deal gone bad

There are 15 comments on the The Kansas City Star story from Sep 19, 2012, titled The Star's editorial | Inept oversight in a deal gone bad. In it, The Kansas City Star reports that:

Felony charges against the business executive who fooled the state of Missouri and the city of Moberly in the disastrous Mamtek U.S. deal are a welcome and overdue show of accountability.The economic development debacle that left Moberly in default on a loan has been marked by a shocking lack of due diligence by state and local officials.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at The Kansas City Star.

Be informed

United States

#1 Sep 20, 2012
Shocking lack of due diligence? No locals will be held accountable.

Thank You Kansas City Star for shedding light on Koster's ability to look the other way.
Koster has let the people of Moberly down. Koster has opened the door for unethical behavior...have it ! There will be no accountability.

Attorney General's Koster's Office is showing a total lack of due diligence in light of this election!

Missouri Attorney General Koster---your lack of action is unethical and just shows that you are bending to the VOTE and not to JUSTICE.

Ever heard of Missouri State Statutes? The ones you are to be upholding?

DO NOT VOTE FOR KOSTER!

KOSTER HAS LET THE CITIZENS OF MISSOURI DOWN!
Again

United States

#2 Sep 20, 2012
What can legally be done against our local officials?

Is being bad at your job a crime?

Has anyone uncovered an actual money trail leading from Cole to any of our local officials? Assumptions and wild "local" conspiracy theories don't count. Hard, concrete evidence of wrong doing and local corruption.

If you answered nothing or no to any of these questions, exactly what is it do you expect the AG to do? Like previous stated, I can't stand our local officials, I think they are all idiots, that includes Riley and Mahaffey, but at this point, the only things they are guilty of is being morons and inadequate at their job. Good luck prosecuting that case in front of a jury. LOL. Seriously.

Koster and his office did everything they legally can do regarding this case and going after the local officials based on wild conspiracy theories and the hard on's of a few, would give this deal and our community a bigger black eye than we already have.
Again

United States

#3 Sep 20, 2012
And you are aware, Peter Kinder attended the economic development meeting at the state level when Mamtek was approved for state tax incentives after Cole and Mamtek "officials" gave a short presentation on their product and process. Documents from that meeting and meeting minutes show, Kinder was present for the entire meeting, but only attended until the Mamtek vote and left after the Mamtek vote was taken.

I point this out, because Kinder and Ed Martin are good buddies and big political allies in the state of Missouri. Careful what you ask for.
Be informed

United States

#4 Sep 20, 2012
Again wrote:
And you are aware, Peter Kinder attended the economic development meeting at the state level when Mamtek was approved for state tax incentives after Cole and Mamtek "officials" gave a short presentation on their product and process. Documents from that meeting and meeting minutes show, Kinder was present for the entire meeting, but only attended until the Mamtek vote and left after the Mamtek vote was taken.
I point this out, because Kinder and Ed Martin are good buddies and big political allies in the state of Missouri. Careful what you ask for.
Are you kidding me?

DUE DILLIGENCE! Riley went to China and did not view a working plant? That is what I wanted him to do.

If you invested in a new fangled car factory, as a business person, you would view the process and manufacturing of this new car to make sure the product was 1. Being made 2. Being made to standards 3. See what exactly what kind of plant you were planning on building in Moberly Missouri

As the City Council, I would of expected my representattives to bring actual pictures of a plant back so I could see exactly it is I was voting on! BUSINESS 101?

The locals should not of voted for this unitl they knew all of this information! Stupidity is not an excuse.
Educate youself, ask questions,.....that is what I wanted!

Mayor Riley and the gang had two choices: 1. Hold an election and let the citizens vote on the bond
2. Bypass the vote of its citizens and take full responsibility!

What do you think about the reporter/investigator from Moberly Mirror actually going to the City Council and saying "hey, I cannot verify this company" They chose to ignore her.

THIS IS WHY MOBERLY OFFICIALS SHOULD BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE

A. Once my tax dollars paid for them to go over to China, I expected them to trot their butt out there to see that plant, no matter how far away it was. B. Once a reporter says that she cannot verify its existence, I expect them to HALT the project and get to the bottom of the questions. Ask for pictures
C. Before they hand over 38 million of my tax dollars, I want to vote on it!

They took away my right to vote for this rush deal and by that act alone, they took full responsibility---now, they need to pay the consequences and be held accountable.

This is business 101 people....every business person all over the United States that I have talked to cannot believe that ANYONE would believe you can do a 38 million deal in 17 or 90 days...whatever it was. It would probably not be done so quick by Donald Trump and this is his business, why would someone that has no experience not take their time, cross every T, dot every I ?

Don't you take longer deciding/researching buying a house or a car than they did to give $38 million away?

Best part yet...wait for it..wait for it....."But Cole seemed like a nice guy". Missouri Attorney General is suppose to protect Missouri Citizens. Seems to me, he is just protecting the crooks.

If you really want me to look up all the Missouri State Statutes that have been violated and would make these Officials accountable. I will and I wll post them here for you see. However, the AG Office knows what they are, knows the laws that have been violated and they know they do not want to rock the boat before an election.

I am guessing the is the reasoning because other than that, I just cannot imagine why they have done nothing about the locals who voted to get us in this mess in the first place. If you are frivilous with PUBLIC FUNDS, there are laws against that! DUE DILLIGENCE! Do you want me to post the Statutes I wanted enforced or do you want me to mail them to you?

You know what, I cannot make it today or tommorrow but Monday, I will be down at the Capital, I will be there at the Attorney General's Office and hand deliver them to his office.
Be informed

United States

#5 Sep 20, 2012
Again wrote:
What can legally be done against our local officials?
Is being bad at your job a crime?
Has anyone uncovered an actual money trail leading from Cole to any of our local officials? Assumptions and wild "local" conspiracy theories don't count. Hard, concrete evidence of wrong doing and local corruption.
If you answered nothing or no to any of these questions, exactly what is it do you expect the AG to do? Like previous stated, I can't stand our local officials, I think they are all idiots, that includes Riley and Mahaffey, but at this point, the only things they are guilty of is being morons and inadequate at their job. Good luck prosecuting that case in front of a jury. LOL. Seriously.
Koster and his office did everything they legally can do regarding this case and going after the local officials based on wild conspiracy theories and the hard on's of a few, would give this deal and our community a bigger black eye than we already have.
Yes, being inadequate at your job is a crime when you do not follow Missouri State Statutes and when you do not let your taxpayers VOTE on a 38 million dollar deal. When you do not let the people vote and a deal you irresponsibility vote on without proper investigation falls thru, then you are left accountable.

If they were so sure about the damn deal and did not want to take responsibility for it, then WHY DID THEY NOT LET THE PEOPLE VOTE ON IT?

They have violated a whole slew of Missouri State Statutes. Would you like them posted on here? No, better yet, I will be down at the AG's office on Monday with a list of the Statutes I want enforced. I am serious. Expect me around 10:30am or so. If I can find some parking, it may be sooner.

Moberly keeps bypassing laws and they are banking on the locals stupidity and that the other agencies do not want to rock the boat or have the embarassment either. You do realize new businesses will not want to deal with our City and that we will probably not be able to get FUNDING for any future projects.
Be informed

United States

#6 Sep 20, 2012
This is NOT GOVERNOR NIXON'S FAULT!

I do NOT agree with the Kansas City Star;s suggestion that it is. Local Government's are in charge of their own finances. They also have constitutional rights that say the State cannot intervene.

No STATE money was paid out. No STATE incentives paid. Therefore, Governor Nixon cannot be held responsible for what Moberly's inexperienced and unethical City Government has done.

I do, however, think that the AG has a legal responsibility to hold these City Officials responsible. This is not the first unethical/lawbreaking situation that the City of Moberly Officials and City Council has done and gotten away with.

Governor Nixon is an excellent Governor and while all states are hurting for money in these hard economic times, Missouri is not as bad as some states. This is due to Governor Nixon being a responsible Governor.

Governor Nixon cannot control every City Government or the Economy.

I just think the AG needs to step up and hold these City Officials accountable for their lack of due diigence, taking the right of their Citizens away to vote on a HUGE deal and for the people that traveled over to China but did not see a working complany or confirm its existence. That fact alone, still amazes me!

Governor Nixon did nothing wrong. The State paid out nothing.

However, I cannot say the same for City of Moberly Offiials. Where is the Attorney General? Who is protecting the Citizens of Moberly? AG Koster?
Agreed

United States

#7 Sep 20, 2012
Be informed wrote:
This is NOT GOVERNOR NIXON'S FAULT!
I do NOT agree with the Kansas City Star;s suggestion that it is. Local Government's are in charge of their own finances. They also have constitutional rights that say the State cannot intervene.
No STATE money was paid out. No STATE incentives paid. Therefore, Governor Nixon cannot be held responsible for what Moberly's inexperienced and unethical City Government has done.
I do, however, think that the AG has a legal responsibility to hold these City Officials responsible. This is not the first unethical/lawbreaking situation that the City of Moberly Officials and City Council has done and gotten away with.
Governor Nixon is an excellent Governor and while all states are hurting for money in these hard economic times, Missouri is not as bad as some states. This is due to Governor Nixon being a responsible Governor.
Governor Nixon cannot control every City Government or the Economy.
I just think the AG needs to step up and hold these City Officials accountable for their lack of due diigence, taking the right of their Citizens away to vote on a HUGE deal and for the people that traveled over to China but did not see a working complany or confirm its existence. That fact alone, still amazes me!
Governor Nixon did nothing wrong. The State paid out nothing.
However, I cannot say the same for City of Moberly Offiials. Where is the Attorney General? Who is protecting the Citizens of Moberly? AG Koster?
Something we are in total agreement on regarding Nixon and the state.

However, saying Koster is protecting city officials is a bit of a reach. I have thought there was a conflict of interest regarding this whole thing from the get go. Koster and Fusselman are working together on this matter, yet hanging all over Fusselman Salvage Co. is Ed Martin for AG signs. That's a bit odd, if you ask me, for a man that is supposed to be working with AG Koster on a case of this magnitude, to so openly be supporting the opposing candidate doesn't add up. If that isn't a conflict of interest, I really don't know what is. Personally, I feel the finger pointing towards Koster, should probably be aimed more locally and start right there with Mike Fusselman, IMO.
nowonder

Columbia, MO

#8 Sep 21, 2012
If you download the probable cause statement you will see the interviews with Cole were done during the bankruptcy proceedings brought by UMB and much of the information came from SEC, which is now suing the Coles. The "investigation" Koster is using to get re-elected was done by other people, not him.
Mirror

Columbia, MO

#9 Sep 21, 2012
I feel I must correct "Be Informed" in regards to statements made about the Mirror.

The public, including the press, did not know about Project Sugar until the paperwork was complete and an announcement was made by State and local officials.

The Mirror did NOT investigate the Project immediately and go to the Council and tell them not to move ahead. That was the irony of the situation. The Mirror had not investigated Mamtek, Cole or the Project but was accused of doing so, which apparently was the basis of the Mirror boycott. The Mirror did not begin investigations until February 2011 and released the information only in the final issue, March 31, 2011, which it mailed to all Moberly residents.

It is true that Mr. Mehaffy, a non-elected Moberly official, dismissed (at the time of publication and during House hearings)all Mirror findings, referring to them as "one person's negative view".

Mr. Mehaffy mentioned in House hearings that Moberly Area Economic Development did not have the money to do proper due diligence. The Mirror spent only time in acquiring its information. But then with allegedly bogus pre-paid contracts dangling in front of him, the last thing Mr. Mehaffy had was time.

Perhaps Mr. Cole will shed some light on matters during his trial, if there is one.
Be informed

United States

#10 Sep 21, 2012
Mirror wrote:
I feel I must correct "Be Informed" in regards to statements made about the Mirror.
The public, including the press, did not know about Project Sugar until the paperwork was complete and an announcement was made by State and local officials.
The Mirror did NOT investigate the Project immediately and go to the Council and tell them not to move ahead. That was the irony of the situation. The Mirror had not investigated Mamtek, Cole or the Project but was accused of doing so, which apparently was the basis of the Mirror boycott. The Mirror did not begin investigations until February 2011 and released the information only in the final issue, March 31, 2011, which it mailed to all Moberly residents.
It is true that Mr. Mehaffy, a non-elected Moberly official, dismissed (at the time of publication and during House hearings)all Mirror findings, referring to them as "one person's negative view".
Mr. Mehaffy mentioned in House hearings that Moberly Area Economic Development did not have the money to do proper due diligence. The Mirror spent only time in acquiring its information. But then with allegedly bogus pre-paid contracts dangling in front of him, the last thing Mr. Mehaffy had was time.
Perhaps Mr. Cole will shed some light on matters during his trial, if there is one.
Thank You for the information

I thought that the Mirror let the Council know that the Mirror could not authenticate Mamtek as a company BEFORE the Council signed on the dotted line.

Didn't they know about the article and the issues uncovered by the Mirror BEFORE they proceeded with the project?

So, I will correct my previous statement, once the Mirror Article became public, the Moberly City Council and Mehaffy should of halted the deal and investigated it further.

Sadly, we Moberly citizens just don't know the whole and true story and we NEVER will. THere will be no investigations into what Moberly officials knew and when. If the City of MOberly Officials were the ones signing on the dotted line, they also had due dilligence.

The ELECTED Officials had DUE DILLIGENCE in this whole mess and should be held accountable.
Moberly does nothing

United States

#11 Sep 21, 2012
nowonder wrote:
If you download the probable cause statement you will see the interviews with Cole were done during the bankruptcy proceedings brought by UMB and much of the information came from SEC, which is now suing the Coles. The "investigation" Koster is using to get re-elected was done by other people, not him.
You mean that Koster has not done an independent investigation?

No wonder he won't investigate Moberly Officials--IT HASN'T BEEN DONE and he cannot use some one else's investigation!!!!!!!!!!

It is Koster's job to investigate this mess, the whole mess. AND YES, if Koster does not investigate Moberly Officials and the fact that they rushed a big deal thru,and they took the right away from the Citizens to vote, then he is PROTECTING THEM.

I thought it was Koster's job to do an independent investigation? The whole state is watching. Moberly Citizens want their locals held responsible.
mobfrustrated

Columbia, MO

#12 Sep 21, 2012
"The President of Moberly Area Economic Development Corporation, Corey Mehaffey, told GoodRadio News he cannot comment on the on-going criminal litigation."
ask questions

Columbia, MO

#13 Sep 21, 2012
Be informed wrote:
This is NOT GOVERNOR NIXON'S FAULT!
I do NOT agree with the Kansas City Star;s suggestion that it is. Local Government's are in charge of their own finances. They also have constitutional rights that say the State cannot intervene.
No STATE money was paid out. No STATE incentives paid. Therefore, Governor Nixon cannot be held responsible for what Moberly's inexperienced and unethical City Government has done.
I do, however, think that the AG has a legal responsibility to hold these City Officials responsible. This is not the first unethical/lawbreaking situation that the City of Moberly Officials and City Council has done and gotten away with.
Governor Nixon is an excellent Governor and while all states are hurting for money in these hard economic times, Missouri is not as bad as some states. This is due to Governor Nixon being a responsible Governor.
Governor Nixon cannot control every City Government or the Economy.
I just think the AG needs to step up and hold these City Officials accountable for their lack of due diigence, taking the right of their Citizens away to vote on a HUGE deal and for the people that traveled over to China but did not see a working complany or confirm its existence. That fact alone, still amazes me!
Governor Nixon did nothing wrong. The State paid out nothing.
However, I cannot say the same for City of Moberly Offiials. Where is the Attorney General? Who is protecting the Citizens of Moberly? AG Koster?
It may not be Nixon's fault but he and former Governor Holden were in a race with each other in 2010 to get the credit for this big deal. The stories back then made it sound like they had landed the 600 jobs all by themselves.
Informed Moberly Citizen

United States

#14 Sep 22, 2012
Agreed wrote:
<quoted text>
Something we are in total agreement on regarding Nixon and the state.
However, saying Koster is protecting city officials is a bit of a reach. I have thought there was a conflict of interest regarding this whole thing from the get go. Koster and Fusselman are working together on this matter, yet hanging all over Fusselman Salvage Co. is Ed Martin for AG signs. That's a bit odd, if you ask me, for a man that is supposed to be working with AG Koster on a case of this magnitude, to so openly be supporting the opposing candidate doesn't add up. If that isn't a conflict of interest, I really don't know what is. Personally, I feel the finger pointing towards Koster, should probably be aimed more locally and start right there with Mike Fusselman, IMO.
Personally, I have wondered why Mike Fussleman has not pressed charges or asked the Attorney General to file charges. I think that Attorney General Koster said NO. Its election year, you know?

Furthermore, Fussleman is an individual taxpayer and vote how he wants.

Fusselman has NO CHOICE but to work with the current Attorney General. What is he suppose to say? We are from different parties so we cannot asscociate? I am pretty sure that if the Attorney General says "we are working on this" that you do not say NO! As an Attorney, Fussleman could have his Licensed pulled.

The answer must be that Koster will not do it. Koster has said NO CHARGES and therefore Fusselman cannot file any. Election time and all. Koster should not be our Attorney General if he cannot come in and protect Missouri Citizens from their own inept government.

Koster is just worried about an election. However, if he only knew that people want their locals held accountable and he would send a message to other local Government Officials that hey, you cannot ignore the law and not let people vote on issues and then just claim ignorance when it all goes wrong.

Why would KOSTER let this go? Missouri is watching and Missourians expect the people that visited China and voted on this deal to be held responsible.

Attorney General Koster, I am so disappointed. I feel that by not holding Moberly Officials accountable, you are protecting them and rewarding them for their lackof due dilligence. Even after all the red flags......
POWER TO THE PEOPLE

United States

#15 Sep 26, 2012
Informed Moberly Citizen wrote:
<quoted text>
Personally, I have wondered why Mike Fussleman has not pressed charges or asked the Attorney General to file charges. I think that Attorney General Koster said NO. Its election year, you know?
Furthermore, Fussleman is an individual taxpayer and vote how he wants.
Fusselman has NO CHOICE but to work with the current Attorney General. What is he suppose to say? We are from different parties so we cannot asscociate? I am pretty sure that if the Attorney General says "we are working on this" that you do not say NO! As an Attorney, Fussleman could have his Licensed pulled.
The answer must be that Koster will not do it. Koster has said NO CHARGES and therefore Fusselman cannot file any. Election time and all. Koster should not be our Attorney General if he cannot come in and protect Missouri Citizens from their own inept government.
Koster is just worried about an election. However, if he only knew that people want their locals held accountable and he would send a message to other local Government Officials that hey, you cannot ignore the law and not let people vote on issues and then just claim ignorance when it all goes wrong.
Why would KOSTER let this go? Missouri is watching and Missourians expect the people that visited China and voted on this deal to be held responsible.
Attorney General Koster, I am so disappointed. I feel that by not holding Moberly Officials accountable, you are protecting them and rewarding them for their lackof due dilligence. Even after all the red flags......
City people are going to skate on this. I knew they would.

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