P. 1
Rosenberg, Benjamin | Testimony transcript

Rosenberg, Benjamin | Testimony transcript

|Views: 2,513|Likes:
Testimony given to Thomas Loraine by Benjamin Rosenberg.
Testimony given to Thomas Loraine by Benjamin Rosenberg.

More info:

Published by: Alexandra Nicolas, joplinglobe.com on Apr 04, 2014
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

Availability:

Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less

04/05/2014

pdf

text

original

Transcript of the Testimony of Benjamin Rosenberg

Date: November 6, 2013 Volume: I Case: In Re: Joplin Critical Investigation

Printed On: November 13, 2013

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. Phone: 417-358-4078 Fax: 417-451-1114 Email:daholliday@hotmail.com Internet:

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 1

IN RE:

JOPLIN CRITICAL INVESTIGATION

SWORN STATEMENT OF

BENJAMIN ROSENBERG

Taken on Wednesday, November 6, 2013, from 6:07 p.m. to 6:46 p.m., at the law offices of Juddson H. McPherson, LLC, 626 S. Byers, in the City of Joplin, County of Jasper, State of Missouri, before SHARON K. ROGERS, C.C.R.650, a Certified Court Reporter and a Notary Public within and for the County of Jasper, and State of Missouri.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 2

APPEARANCES

MR. THOMAS E. LORAINE Loraine & Associates, LLC 4075 Osage Beach Pkwy., Suite 300 Osage Beach, MO 65065

tellaw@loraineandassociates.com

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 3

S T I P U L A T I O N

IT IS HEREBY STIPULATED that this Sworn Statement may be taken by steno-mask type recording by SHARON K. ROGERS, a Certified Court Reporter, and afterwards reduced into typewriting. It is further stipulated that the signature of the witness is hereby waived, and that said Sworn Statement of said witness shall be of the same force and effect as though said witness had read and signed Sworn Statement.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 4 I N D E X Page/Line DIRECT EXAMINATION BY MR. LORAINE . . . 5-4

E X H I B I T S

Exhibit #A.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

5-9

Advice of Rights

Note:

Exhibits in separate binder

(sic) - typed as spoken (ph.) - phonetic

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 5 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. BENJAMIN ROSENBERG Having been first duly sworn and examined, testified as follows: DIRECT EXAMINATION BY MR. LORAINE: Q. Doctor, would you please state your name and your occupation for me? Benjamin Rosenberg, I'm a pediatric dentist. Dr. Rosenberg, for our purposes you've read Exhibit #A? I have. And agreed to abide by its contents? I have. And you understand that you're giving this statement to us under oath and of your own free will? I do. Dr. Rosenberg, you have read my contract? Yes. And you know what I'm investigating here? Yes. And to remind you I'm talking about three things primarily, although some other things have come up, the conduct of Mayor Pro Tem Scearce involving renting a building of bookmaking, and of course that's some 20

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 6 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. A. Q. A. Q. years ago and something about an FBI investigation, number two was fact and circumstance surrounding the release of information and the taking of something, a note off Manager Rohr's desk, and the third thing is Mr. Woolston's or Four State Homes' or Charlie Kuehn's or any of the related entities, and/or the master developer Wallace-Bajjali in respect to the purchase, sale, or leasing of real estate for current or future developments. Correct. And to that end your name has come up and I've been told that I should talk with you. So I am trying to take everybody that will walk through this door and try to get as complete and thorough as I can, trying to get rid of some of these issues for the City. All right. And that's what we're doing here. So to that Those are my tasks.

extent tell me when you were elected to the board? Approximately six years - six years ago in April. I can't remember what year it was,

but April will be my sixth year.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 7 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. A. Q. Q. A. Q. A. Q. Q. A. Is that more than one term? Yes, I'm almost midway through my second term. So they're four year terms? Yes. And you've not been Mayor yet? No, nor will I ever be. Okay. that. I don't want to be Mayor. Okay. To the extent that you have requested I don't want to go any further with

as one of my employers to have these matters run what, if anything, do you know about any of these issues? Pro Tem Scearce. that? I know very little. You've heard interviews, I suppose, I guess? Yeah, Bill and I are close personal friends. I was in his wedding, we've remained close personal friends since the mid 70's. Until And let's start with Mayor What can you contribute to

this all came up I didn't know he even rented to anybody. But since then obviously I've

heard that he rented a space on 15th Street when he had a building over there to some

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. A. Q. A. Q. Q. people who turned out to be local bookies. Do I know they were local bookies? Not until

I read it in the paper. I thought other people were the local bookies. I don't bet

so it wouldn't make me any difference, but that's all I know. it? Would Bill participate in

I don't think so.

But nevertheless you do understand this was a separate building, it was not where he was at the time? Correct. It was its own building? Yes. And I have interviewed Bill and I have interviewed Mr. Woolston and -I would tell you that it's something that happened a long time ago and I don't see how it's germane to the ethics on the Council. Now that's my opinion, but I want to wait on your report. All right. I'm trying to be fair. Having said that let's talk a The

little bit about the second issue.

second issue is this release of information on Mr. - I'm having a little trouble pronouncing that.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 9 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. A. Q. Scearce. Like it's scarce.

Yeah, Mr. Scearce having a handwritten note and it being stolen off Manager Rohr's desk and it's in his handwriting, what do you know about that? I know there was a note. I've been told that

Mr. Scearce is protecting the whistle blower, that he did not take it off his desk. I

don't believe Bill would do something like that. I know there's bad blood between the Mr. Scearce

City Manager and Mr. Scearce.

tends to check up on the City Manager all of the time. In other words if you don't dot your I's and cross your T's Bill will catch you. He's the type of Council person that

pays a lot of attention, spends a lot of time looking up things, making phone calls, and Mr. Rohr is not the type person that wants anyone to check up on him. dominant figure. He's a very

He rules - and I'm one of He

the ones that wanted him fired, too. rules by intimidation and fear.

I think if

the truth were known and there were confidentiality most of the City employees would like to see him gone. But anyway,

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 10 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. Q. Billy speaks his peace. And I'll quote what

I said in the paper, every Council needs a Bill Scearce, you don't need two. All right. In regards to the third item

there's been a request for some kind of investigation on -Mr. Woolston. -- Mr. Woolston. That's my request. Okay. That is your request? I made the motion. That includes comments about

Yes, sir. All right.

Wallace-Bajjali? Yes. It includes Four State Homes? Yes. It includes Charlie Kuehn? Yes, he owns Four State Homes. And I guess any items that are collateral to that I feel are within my purview. All right. May I make a statement?

Make a statement. Mr. Woolston was a Mayor, he was Mayor during our tornado. He's very close to Mark Rohr.

If I look at the votes he always votes with

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 11 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Mark Rohr. If Mark wants something Woolston He was a real estate agent,

is always there.

worked for a real estate company here as a salesman, and he possesses knowledge that even I don't know about what's going to happen in the real estate business and certain properties. I was asked to come to a

meeting one Sunday about a year ago, maybe a little longer. A group in the neighborhood

wanted to form a neighborhood group, they told me. They asked me to come. I can't

remember the lady's name, they own a company called Twister Safe here in Joplin. went. So I

I thought they were going to be

interested in forming what we call a CID, Community Improvement District, or an NID, Neighborhood Improvement District, and I was going to tell them the steps they would go through and I thought it was a good idea to meet with the neighbors and have this. Well,

it deteriorated and it wasn't long - Woolston and I were both there and it wasn't long before they were jumping all over Woolston. They were very angry, many at the neighbors, and I defended Mr. Woolston. He had every

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 12 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 right to buy property, he's a real estate agent. Well, then things began to take another turn. All of a sudden Mr. Woolston

is now representing Charlie Kuehn, purchasing property for Charlie in this disaster area. I can't prove it, but what I think was happening from the complaints I'm getting was Woolston is buying the property as distressed residential property for his employer, Mr. Kuehn. Mr. Kuehn then flips it, and we all

knew this was going to happen, flips it into commercial property and turns it over to Wallace-Bajjali for ten or twenty times the profit. So you lose your house, I go say I'm

Benji Rosenberg and I work for Pro 100 Real Estate Agency and I would like to buy your property. You're not moving back to town,

you've left Joplin, God knows where you went, but I'd like to buy your property from you. It's a distress lot, you know. Normally lots

are going for $7,000.00 to $10,000.00 to $15,000.00, but I'm going to give you $25,000.00. They sell the property only to

find out that Charlie Kuehn flipped it for $100,000.00 or $150,000.00. Now these are

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 13 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. Q. A. Q. A. Q. the complaints I'm getting from people, concerned citizens. I've heard from real

estate agents, I've heard from fellow Councilmen, I've heard from citizens who sold the property. And since Mr. Woolston was

kind enough to bring Mr. Scearce up we might as well since we're paying you, we might as well pay you to investigate Mr. Woolston, too, and I also volunteered myself if anyone wanted to investigate me. Nobody wanted to investigate you. Nobody wanted to investigate me. I guess you're not very controversial. I'm sort of (inaudible) and controversial. Well, you mentioned other real estate agents. A. Yes.

You mentioned sellers. Yes. And you mentioned -Other Council people. Yes, other Council people. And former Council people. Okay. names? The former Council person is a former Mayor Can you provide me with any of these

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 14 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. A. Q. Q. A. Q. A. named Dandridge. Cheryl Dandridge, I've got her scheduled. She's pretty fired up. She called me and I

said you need to talk to the investigator. You don't need to tell me anymore. And I

said if you really have a gripe then anybody who is licensed in the State of Missouri, you can file a complaint with that licensing agent and the law requires them to investigate it. that. So I said I would suggest

The complaint, it has to do with her

daughter, and I can't remember if whether it's Andrea or -Wilson or something? I can't remember what his name is. find out tomorrow. I can

He's a manager for like a

Snak-Atak out on East 32nd almost to I-49. Cheryl will tell you his name. Well, I'll be talking with Dandridge, not tomorrow, but soon. And that was one. Then that whole

neighborhood group was sort of fired up. Who was in that neighborhood group? Well, let's see, what the hell is his name? He used to own Allgeier-Martin, but it's not

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 15 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Allgeier-Martin, and he lives over on Murphy Boulevard now. minute. It will come to me in a

I spoke with Morris Glaze, a fellow

Councilman, and he's had several complaints. Morris? Morris Glaze. And he told me he, too, has And

had complaints from mostly realtors.

some of that may be just jealousy, I have no idea, but Woolston now has left his employment, he has his own company in cahoots with Charlie Kuehn. Now Woolston has made a

statement that said since I didn't take a commission I made no violation. true, Mike. Well, not

If you used the influence of

your office and knowledge that you have that wasn't general knowledge to the public you furthered yourself by now you own your own real estate agency. Whether you took a But again

commission or not is immaterial.

these are all accusations and I have no proof. Anyway Gary Garvin talked to me.

Who is that? He's a real estate agent here. Gary Garvin? Garvin.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 16 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Is he available for me to talk to? Sure, he owns a bar and a restaurant named Fat & Happy's. All right, Gary was

interested in a property on I want to say 1801 or 1804 and it's this street - what the hell is the name of that street? off this 20th Street corridor. It's right And what they

wanted to do was extend this property for a grocery store and some other stuff so that's why they were interested in it. to close the street off. name of the street. They wanted

Can't remember the

But anyway there was a

Mrs. Marble or Marvel, and he was interested in that property, and she left. anyway, but she left town. She was nuts

But all that

corridor he's been trying to buy property up and down there. And the people right behind

that are the people who I went to their house one day to listen to their complaints, because there was some argument, rumors floating around, of Woolston threatening use of imminent domain. totally false. It turned out to be No one.

He never did that.

You know how things just sort of pop up. Because only the City can take imminent

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 17 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. Q. A. Q. A. A. Q. domain. Yeah, I mean he certainly knows that is available. Well, but he also ought to know it's against the law in the State of Missouri to use imminent domain for economic gain. In other

words I can't take your property and sell it to her so she can make money on it for economics. If we need it for the common

good, streets, sewers, blah, blah, blah, yeah, we use it all the time, but it turned out that was definitely not true. How did you determine it was not true? I traced every lead that I could find. Nobody had ever heard of it. No sense telling me that then? No, no. So anyway that's the accusations,

that he used the influence of his office to gain an advantage in the real estate market for himself and his employer. Have you noticed him abstaining from votes? Just recently. He claims to have been doing that continuously. No, just recently continuously. I've been

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 18 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. obviously recently. So I need to go back and look. honest with you and I -Everything he provided. I mean he brought I'll be

that up at a Council meeting, I'm providing all this, but I don't think he abstained on Dandridge's daughter property if that came before us, you know, and I'm not sure - I don't think he abstained before because he would say since I have no financial interest I'm not going to abstain, but then all of a sudden he does have interest and he is abstaining on everything that has to do with Four State. Well, he told me in an interview here today that he's been abstaining regularly on anything and he's talking about historically before any of these 19 pieces of property came up. I don't think so. So I need to check that out? Yes. Brian can give you a lot of He's got a good mind and he'll

information.

remember some of that, but it also can be looked up. You're going to kill the clerks

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 19 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. with all your requests. I already am. I already am. Now can you sit

down in all your leisure time and provide me any names and numbers and addresses? That

would be greatly helpful. I mean it's going to be hard to dig these - it was hard for you and you know everybody, and it's going to be damn hard for me. Yeah, I can't remember the name of that street. You're from Joplin.

We got somebody that's not from Joplin because we don't want anybody from Joplin. We can ask -Is any of this -Yeah, let me see. just a second. I can tell you here in What you want to

Delaware.

look at are all these properties on Delaware, okay? coming. This is where the complaints are See, look, this is 18th right here,

and the lady that owns the house right there was the one that invited me to come, okay? But it's these properties that are the most interesting. See, those are all part of what he's handed out and given to you guys.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 20 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. A. A. Q. A. Q. Q. A. And then this property is interesting. And

then this is Murphy Boulevard should cut in right here and it's this guy. is his name? What the hell

I'd have to call Councilman

Golden because he and I went to that together. Do you want me to call him? If

If you want to call him now that's fine.

you want to think about some of these things and try to get me some of this information I can follow-up on I'll -I'll get it for you tomorrow. No hurry. I'll get all the names I can. No hurry because I'm going to be here for a little while yet. But Dandridge's property is in one of these right here, Cheryl Dandridge's daughter. They bought a house here. But what I think was happening - there's no question on this property on here, none whatsoever. No question about what? About any improprieties. Everybody knew But over

exactly what was happening here.

here I think a lot of these people felt like they were selling residential property when

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 21 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. Q. A. Q. A. just a very short time it became commercial and went for lots of money. The interesting

thing to find out would be what they paid for these lots and what Charlie Kuehn got for these lots. And I'm working on that very allegation. Charlie is going to be slick because, see, now all of a sudden -Charlie just refused to testify. Yeah, all of a sudden we find out that Charlie now has a relationship with Wallace-Bajjali, he's procuring property for them. That's the problem, you know. But I

will get you the names of -I think before you work a lot I want you to take a look at this and this because these are the fires, this is one of the instruments he had, these are the lot numbers that are numbered on here. Well, look, let me show you something. Jennings-Brown, this they already knew, okay? All Four State Homes, anything that went to Four State Homes and then what happened to it after that, or Kuehn, that would be the key to whether Woolston was acting unethically or

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 22 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. Q. A. A. Q. A. Q. not. Cheryl will come loaded. pretty angry. I mean she's

I didn't get into it any

deeper because I said it's already been handled, you know, it will be investigated, Cheryl. What is Cheryl? Other than a former Mayor

what does she do for a living? I'm not sure if she does anything now. Retired now? Yeah, she was with like the Chamber of Commerce in different places. So she was not a realtor? No, she was married to a doctor for awhile. No, she was never a realtor. Then she probably made her living off of divorcing the doctor. I think he had to pay, you know. That's a good method. It's not bad. I mean she probably put her

days in, had a couple of kids and stuff. Anyway I think they're good friends now. What they want to do is they want to close this street right here, I'm told, and then they want to extend all this over. couldn't buy this property. And they

These people

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 23 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. A. Q. Q. Q. A. Q. A. were putting up a fuss. What's the purpose of all this property? This is supposed to become the library/theater, then retail locks, you know what I mean when I say locks over retail, and then grocery store and shopping. See, and

I'm not sure if we - when I say we there's a corporation called the JRC. with it? Yes. Whether they have picked up any of this property yet or not. My understanding that's all been conveyed to JRC. To JRC. Then there's a paper trail. Are you familiar

And I think, you know, I've talked with the auditor and I think that some of those fears are not shown on the transcript to the JRC. I think. I'm still trying to get all of that But you see some of what you're I don't

information.

complaining about may not be there. know yet.

But what does bother me is the

Wallace-Bajjali connection. Well, Wallace-Bajjali has a relationship with Kuehn, and we know this because Kuehn

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 24 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Q. announced it. And that may well be in the What his

City Council minutes somewhere. relationship is I don't know.

Wallace-Bajjali is going around, they're paying three times what the property is worth in my opinion. They've got property so

inflated in this town that, God bless them, I wish I was in on the deal, but to me when you sit on the City Council you can't be doing things like that. things like that. Has anyone in the Council talked about terminating Wallace-Bajjali? Would cost too much. just let it guide. Wallace-Bajjali. What we need to do is Don't give in to He's a hell of a salesman. You don't want to do

He'll remind you if you ever - and he'll talk to you. He'll remind you of somebody with

blue suede shoes that just got off a Greyhound bus to sell aluminum siding and when he sells all he can he's getting back on the Greyhound bus. always thought. Well, of course your City Manager claims that he did all of the due diligence on these Now that's what I've

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 25 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Q. A. A. guys. Do you know who did the due diligence? Woolston. Is that right? Yeah, Woolston. I mean I was the only one

that voted against it and, man, I started getting stuff on Wallace-Bajjali that just scares the pants off of you. They're very litigious, they form LLCs like they're going out of style, they've got more litigation against them and filing lawsuits. I would be

scared to just cancel the contract right now because of Council. What I'm not scared to

do - because every one of these projects can't stand alone. He's got to have - like

the one he's got off the board which we approved required a 35 percent investment by the citizens of the City of Joplin, so the citizens of Joplin put up 35 percent so he could build these housing units. And then you've got to pay him a commission? Well, yeah, but that included the - I mean this guy is so smooth I'm telling you he's like Teflon. behind him. But the City Manager stands

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 26 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. Q. A. That's exactly where we're going. All right. Here's the problem. The City

Manager is not controlled by the City Council in my opinion. The City Manager tries to No matter what we tell But there's

control the Council.

him he does what he wants to do. not enough votes to fire him.

I thought we

had enough votes when I moved to fire him one night, but I was one short. I understand the Mayor changed her mind several times? Several times. I'll be talking to her probably tomorrow. And I was asked on the TV why did she change her mind and I said I don't know, I guess it's just a woman's prerogative. wouldn't put that in there. Well, they

But anyway that That's what

would have solved the problem. broke this thing up.

That's what really

brought everything to a head with Scearce and everything. And the rumor is, might as well

hear rumors, that Mark has been feeding the Joplin Globe with information that makes Scearce look bad because he can't stand Scearce. And I called him on it in a meeting

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 27 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. A. Q. Q. A. and he said, he admitted he didn't have anything, he just was mad at Bill for Bill criticizing him all the time. Now he says he

didn't say that, but goddamnit, it's on tape. We've got the tape of that meeting. Can you have that tape provided to me? Sure, you can. It's City Council. You just

ask for the tape of the last budget session. Not the transcription? Do I need the tape?

I'm having them transcribed. You might just want the tape. Ask the clerk. I don't

You know, you can say I said it. care.

Say Benji said that Mark admitted that He never

he didn't have anything on Bill.

admitted he went to the Globe, but I think that piece of paper is what probably - and I don't know where that piece of paper is now. Have you ever seen that piece of paper? No, I've never seen the piece of paper. I've got it. Okay. Never seen it.

It's not very much. No, but, you know, I'm telling you really I'm trying to help the City Manager become successful until I can fire his ass, to be

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 28 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. A. Q. Q. Q. A. quite frank with you. be fired? Yes. Do I think he should

Do I think it's time for him Yes. Period. No. You know,

to leave our city?

do I have enough votes?

Will I make the

motion again and catch hell in the paper? No. Will I vote to fire hi? Yes.

So who will make the motion? I don't know. So far we don't have enough,

anyone with any guts as far as I'm concerned. It should be the Mayor. Let her do it.

She's the one that's screwing everything up in the beginning, you know. I think there I

are six votes there now, but I'm not sure. can't speak for anybody but myself. Well, you've given me some ground. I would

like you to do your homework a little bit tonight, if you would. Okay. And don't think you have to do it tonight because I'll be back here for several weeks yet. Okay. So I mean this is not -I'll get it for you and I won't trouble you, but I will give it to Brian.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 29 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. A. Q. A. Q. A. Brian would be good. I'll give it to Brian the information. why I can't remember, you know, you get senior moments after awhile. I can't remember what you said. Yeah, that's why you've got to transcribe it. Q. That's why I've got a transcriptionist. I can't tell you He My And

That's really all I know.

much about Bill Scearce and gambling. goes back into what, 1991, '91, '95.

opinion is they're just being disparaging and that it doesn't make a hill of beans because he wasn't on the Council. Why is the Globe interested in it? I don't know. Well, because they want to

sell papers and they can't sell many papers anymore. I would guess. Yeah, but they seem They

to be attacking Scearce pretty hard.

get on me a little bit, but I'm just trying to say, you know, maybe it's just I don't want to be paranoid about this whole thing. And Jesus Christ, we don't get paid anything. I mean this is my civic duty. I was on the

School Board for nine years and I'll tell you a little story. Before I ran for City

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 30 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. A. Q. Council somebody came up to me and said, they heard I was going to run, they said, you know, I knew they always persecuted the Jews. I didn't know you liked it better. You

should stay on the School Board. Better people. I kind of figured that's probably true, you probably should have stayed. And, you know, as I look back on my - I served three terms, I was President of the School Board twice, it was more fun. But

since I get my dander up I don't quit and I don't give up easily. where it is. But anyway that's

And you might as well know that

Golden, Scearce, and I are very close personal friends. We were close personal

friends long before we thought about being on the Council and we'll be personal friends long after our Council days are over. And

I've got two years and a few months and then sayonara to the Council. I'll be too old to

serve another term as far as I'm concerned. Blood pressure won't take it probably. Blood pressure is doing pretty good. Hell,

I'm 74 now. I'll be 77 when my term is over,

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 31 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. almost 77. Why do you want to be an 80 year Let other people have We get paid $5.00

old City Councilman?

the joy of doing this job. a meeting. bad.

All right, now, that's not so

I lost one check and I've laundered

another so now I'm paying more taxes than I get the money back. So I asked them to

please not pay me anymore, I can't afford it. So anyway -All right. I hope that this investigation

will lead to some conclusions, and I think it will. I hope it leads to, in all honesty in the end I hope it leads to the conclusion that everyone has acted ethically and honestly and that we've spent our $45,000.00 to prove it. I don't think it will, but -Well, you know, I mean there will be some recommendations made, I can tell you that already, but whether those recommendations will be followed who knows. control. The Council, we're the elected officials, we're the ones that make the decision. And I don't have any

like I've tried to explain to the others,

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 32 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Q. A. it's a game we play. votes. game. It's called get five

Whoever gets five votes wins the We used to play four votes. Okay, the

City Council operates on a charter, we're a charter city. We formed the charter in the

mid 50's, we got rid of the Mayor council for of government which was beneficial for my father and a few others, but not beneficial to the citizens of the City. We hired

professional managers and we have a Council that develops policy and should not interfere in the operation of the City. The School

Board on the other hand operates by state statute and at the pleasure of the state who can dissolve the School Board any time they so choose. No. At any time they so choose. They've jerked Did you know that?

one out of the St. Louis area and they have told that district that their students can go anywhere they want as long as they stay in that -I've heard that. Well, the state Department of Education has the right to do that, just tell the School

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 33 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Q. A. Board you're done. Kansas City is just about But with the

to get the same treatment. City, no.

We had the distasteful benefits of

recalling the Councilmen when I was first on the Council for doing what I think was probably less than some of the stuff that's going on now. All right. Anyway I will get you the information of the names of the people I've talked to, but why in the hell - Vernon Lawson. Which one is that? Vernon Lawson owned property on Murphy Boulevard and it would back up to this area right in here. And it was him and his family

- Vernon is getting pretty old and infirmed, but his family members, and I don't know their names, they were at this meeting I was at and they were some of the ones that weren't very happy either. Give me any names you can later. Okay. And I can get them. Are you going to

interview Jack Golden? Yes. He might even know more. He might remember

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 34 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. their names. It was at that meeting that I can get you - well, we I'm really If

Sunday afternoon.

know this is Dandridge.

interested in Mrs. Marvel's property.

you've got a minute I'll tell you about Mrs. Marvel. She was an instructor in English at

the college, somewhat quaint, and she shows up at my office one day after I was elected to the Council and she tells me she's being tracked electronically by people from outer space and they're doing it with microwaves, she thinks. I'm looking at her like this And she had

can't be real, but it was real. been to others and stuff.

I suggested that

the City government couldn't help her and she needed to talk to the FBI. I almost said she

ought to wrap herself in aluminum foil, but I didn't. Anyway Mrs. Marvel owned a very nice

home, it was hidden by a high wall, and when the tornado hit it was totally wiped. Maybe she was right, maybe somebody from outer space was watching her. Maybe. She also threw kids out of her class

because they wore perfume and she couldn't stand perfume. She was pretty corny. That

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 35 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 A. Q. A. Q. A. A. Q. A. Q. Q. was my only dealing with Mrs. Marvel. wondered about that property. But I

I guess not

enough that I wanted to do an investigation, but that's what we're paying you for. All I

right, I'll get you any other names I can. assume you want to get the heck out of here. No, I need to try to - I've gone through

quite a few people today and I want to try to wrap people up as quickly as I can because we got a little bit behind with the Manager being sick and I had to postpone a week there. Our Manager is sick? He was sick with something, the flu or something. When? It was two weeks ago. Last week. Last week.

We were trying to start last week. No, he was out of town last week. Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Well, I was told he was sick. He's not sick this week. No, he's been in here and he's talked with me. And don't think that everything he's done is He went to

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 36 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 (SWORN STATEMENT CONCLUDED) Q. totally bad. Mark has some remarkable traits

that this Council has been totally unable to control, you know. Okay. I think we're done.

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

Benjamin Rosenberg

In Re:

Joplin Critical Investigation

Page 37

REPORTER'S CERTIFICATE

STATE OF MISSOURI ss. COUNTY OF JASPER I, SHARON K. ROGERS, Certified Court Reporter in the State of Missouri, do certify that pursuant to the foregoing Stipulation the witness came before me on the 6th day of November, 2013, was duly sworn by me, and was examined. That examination was then taken by me by

steno-mask recording and afterwards transcribed; said Sworn Statement is subscribed by the witness as hereinbefore set out on the day in that behalf aforesaid and is herewith returned. I further certify that I am not counsel, attorney, or relative of either party, or clerk, or stenographer of either party or of the attorney of either party, or otherwise interested in the event of this suit.

_______________________ SHARON K. ROGERS, CCR-650

Holliday Reporting Service, Inc. 417-358-4078

You're Reading a Free Preview

Download
scribd
/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->