A Pulaski County commissioner who was grilled about her home business during a regular meeting of the commissioners last week may be in full compliance with state statutes. The Pulaski County Clerk’s Office recently sent a copy of Commissioner Tracey Shorter’s most recent conflict of interest disclosure statement to WKVI, and in it, Shorter lists her home business, “Families First,” and describes the service she provides.
In her statement, Shorter said her cases are appointed by the circuit court judge, and as claims are submitted for her services, she said she will abstain when such claims are presented. She also notes that a relative of hers works in the recorder’s office.
The commissioners last week fell into a heated discussion regarding the business run by Shorter. Commissioner Terry Young questioned Shorter about the business after a claim was submitted for $975 from the business run by Shorter out of her home. Young said he had received numerous complaints from taxpayers and he was asked to question her about it.
Young stated that he thought Shorter’s business “doesn’t really exist,” and refused to approve her claim. Commissioner Larry Brady motioned to approve all claims, including the claim from Families First, but Young refused to second and Shorter abstained. Young, however, made a motion to approve all claims with the exception of the Families First claim. The motion passed.
According to the State Board of Accounts, Shorter would be required to disclose her conflict of interest in a public meeting and file a conflict of interest statement with the circuit court clerk and the State Board of Accounts. Tammy White, director of county services with the SBOA, said as long as that statement is on file and all is in order, Shorter is likely in compliance with statute.