"In the event that Loraine finds that the cost of the investigation will exceed the amounts listed herein, he shall first request authority from the Council of the City of Joplin." That's the language from the contract between investigator Tom Loraine and the Joplin City Council for an investigation that was supposed to cost $45,000 but ended up costing $82,000. The Council
"My original thought was this is ridiculous."
Joplin City Councilwoman Trisha Raney told the KZRG Morning Newswatch Wednesday that was her first reaction to holding an investigation into allegations of wrongdoing against two City Council members. That investigation ended with the firing of City Manager Mark Rohr.
"Essentially we were paying $45,000 to show that rumors that were being spread were not true."
Raney adds that while she can't speak for the whole Council, she's fine with releasing the full itemized bill of the investigation to the public... as long as it doesn't violate confidentiality agreements. Investigator Tom Loraine's bill came to almost $82,000. She adds she had problems with the difference between the amount on Loraine's bill and his original fee.
"I thought we capped him. Maybe it wasn't as clear as we thought it was. And in all of the records we got from the city attorney last week, it looked like that wasn't clear. It wasn't completely clear whether he had authority to go on or not."
Still, Raney voted to pay Tom Loraine's bill, telling us she was worried about a possible legal fight with Loraine over the situation that could've ended up costing much more.