Letter to the Editor – Roger Wall 2.5.2015

By writing this letter, I offer no direct or indirect criticism to anyone.

Upon the appointment of Vernon Johnson to the Ava School board in August of 2014, I immediately began to receive complaints from the public.

As a former duck hunter, I go by the old adage that if it flies like a duck, swims like a duck and smells like a duck, then it’s a Duck. In other word it just didn’t pass the “smell test.”

Before filing the State’s petition, I conducted several hours of research on the issue of nepotism, as well as the doctrine of quo Warranto. I then referred the matter to the office of the Attorney General.

After 60 days, I personally conversed with the Solicitor General, whom is in charge of issuing Attorney General Opinion. Attorney General Opinions are offered as a courtesy to governmental officials in determining whether there are any state laws or legal opinions which may provide guidance. They carry no legal weight and cannot even be quoted in Appellate briefs.

I was informed that the issue of a “step-son or step-parent” was a question of first impression. There were no cases to establish a legal precedent one way or the other. The Petition in Quo Warranto was then filed and I figured that the courts could sort out this somewhat complicated legal issue.

Finally the remaining question here is whether public funds or public-based insurance premiums have been utilized in order to defend an individually-named school board member who allegedly acted outside of his constitutional authority.

However, all’s well that ends well. Due to a change in recent legislation enacted by the Missouri General Assembly and signed by the Governor into law; apparently the school board member in question will be disqualified in the future from ever filing again as a candidate for any school board vacancy.

Roger Wall