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Commission to Stamey – Resign or Be Suspended

ravalli county commission
The Ravalli County Commission in session Friday. (Fullerton Photo)
Listing over two dozen findings based on an investigative audit, the Ravalli County Commissioners voted to ask for Treasurer Valerie Stamey’s immediate resignation.

The board also voted to direct Ravalli County Attorney Bill Fulbright to file an official misconduct charge against Stamey, who was appointed by that same commission late last year.

The commission set a Tuesday, June 24, 2:30 p.m. meeting, where, if Stamey has not resigned, they’ll discuss suspension of the county treasurer. She has been on paid administrative leave since problems came to light in January. The votes Friday followed acceptance of a final report from an independent auditing firm which found major problems in the treasurer’s office, but no evidence of fraud or corruption.

At the meeting, Fulbright asked County Clerk and Recorder Regina Plettenberg to detail what she found when asked to get the treasurer’s office up and running again after Stamey was placed on leave. Plettenberg showed photos of receipts, undeposited checks and cash that were in piles in Stamey’s locked office. The total of undeposited money as of January 24 was over $950,000.

Stamey has consistently accused commissioners and staff of corruption, but the audit and an investigation by retired judge Nels Swandal showed no signs of corruption or fraud. Stamey had been invited to the Friday meeting but did not attend.

The commission then went through the audit report, listing reasons to file an official misconduct charge. Those reasons included:

  • Standard cash management and security practices not followed.
  • Many of the general duties of a county treasurer were not fulfulled.
  • Lack of various monthly reports.
  • State payments to Department of Revenue and Justice not made.
  • Refusal to make reports at county commission’s request.
  • Monthly reconciliation of investment accounts not done.
  • Voting for the resignation request and the filing of official misconduct were commissioners Greg Chilcott, J.R. Iman, Jeff Burrows and Suzy Foss. Ron Stoltz was absent.

    The letter requesting Valerie Stamey’s resignation were to be sent by the commission to Stamey and her attorney Friday, June 20.

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