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'The council has to move on': St. Louis County Council votes to remove auditor

A state audit found Tucker’s lack of oversight fostered former County Executive Steven Stenger’s corruption

CLAYTON, Mo. — The St. Louis County Council voted to remove embattled St. Louis County Auditor Mark Tucker from office Thursday during a closed session meeting.

St. Louis County Executive Sam Page was the county council chairman when he strongly backed Tucker's hiring in February 2017. A state audit found Tucker’s lack of oversight fostered former County Executive Steven Stenger’s corruption.

RELATED: Audit says loopholes in St. Louis County government that allowed Stenger's pay-to-play scheme remain

Tucker was also criticized for not producing audits. The council opened a search for his replacement in October.

Page's spokesman Doug Moore has not yet returned a request seeking comment. 

County Council Chairwoman Rita Days said she and Councilman Mark Harder met with Tucker ahead of Thursday’s council meeting.

“He was just not performing the duties we felt should be performed and so we met with him to get an idea of what was happening in the office and the kinds of things that were being done and not being done,” Days said. “And it wasn’t a very fruitful meeting.

“We didn’t find out much of anything at all so the next step was to inform the entire council of the meeting. This is hard for me, this is people’s livelihoods. But given the fact that Mark was serving on an expired term in the first place, he did have the opportunity to reapply and he chose not to do that. The council has to move on and take care of the business we have to handle.”

Days and Harder would not reveal the council’s final vote, saying only it was enough to satisfy the two-thirds requirement by charter to remove him from office. The sunshine law gives public officials 72 hours to keep closed session votes sealed before they must be released publicly.

Tucker was invited to Thursday’s closed session but did not attend.

“We’re continuing to solicit for a new auditor and we encourage anyone that is interested to step forward,” Harder said. “We will be conducting interviews soon and we encourage anyone interested to step forward.

“They can send their resume to me directly or there is a link on the county website that describes the job.

“We’re excited about the future and getting to hire someone that will work with the council as an auditor.”