Former Hustonville mayor, current councilman apologizes for use of city employees, equipment
Published 6:38 am Thursday, May 18, 2017
HUSTONVILLE – During the May city council meeting, former mayor and current Councilman Cecil Maddox apologized for using city employees and equipment for personal use during his term in 2012.
The issue was resurrected during the council’s May 2 meeting – one that Mayor David Peyton said needed to be resolved once and for all.
According to a June 6, 2012 letter to former Mayor Mark Spivey, also a current council member, from the state’s Auditor of Public Accounts, citizens contacted the office with concerns about the Maddox.
“The concerns, as expressed by the complainant, are regarding the use of city personnel and equipment by the now former Mayor, Cecil Maddox, and the accounting for funds related to the city’s police department,” the letter states.
The letter said complainants stated that Maddox used city employees and equipment to haul gravel and feed to his personal farm located 15 miles outside of city limits.
Peyton asked Maddox if he ever paid restitution for the employee time and use of equipment.
“I would have to look back on my records to see what I have paid and what I haven’t paid,” Maddox said. “I doubt if I paid any man hours. I’ve had four or five loads of gravel hauled out there (to) the farm. I paid for all the gravel. I paid for fuel to put in that truck.”
When asked about any other use of city employees, Maddox said “I believe they pulled a tractor out for me once.”
One of the former city employees involved, Floyd Southerland, was present at the May meeting and asked Maddox if he remembers asking Southerland to go to his farm and fix a lawn mower.
“I don’t remember it,” Maddox said.
Peyton said after he received the letter, which called for a response that he said was never received by the office, he contacted Kentucky State Police and detective Rodney Wren was assigned to the case.
“He scheduled and met with former employees here at city hall,” Peyton said. “I don’t remember all the details but I do remember that after the interview, the detective stood right here and told myself, Rita and Chief (Fred) McCoy that this was an open and shut case, that he had five felony charges against Mayor Maddox for actions taken during his time in office.
Somehow, somewhere, the case got buried. It just went nowhere.”
The letter also stated concerns related to a motorcyle used by the city police chief stating that the motorcycle had a salvage title and was not allowed to be used. The complainants said the motorcycle was sold by the police chief and questioned who received the proceeds but the portion of the letter was not discussed by the council during the recent May meeting.
Councilman Jimmy Evans asked where the evidence was for the concerns about Maddox’s actions and accused Peyton of not wanting Maddox to serve on the council. McCoy confirmed that he heard the statement of it being an “open and shut case” that was made by the detective.
“I think that you don’t want Mr. Maddox on the council, is what I think. I think that’s what the bottom line is,” Evans said.
“The bottom line is Mr. Maddox used city equipment and employees for personal use without paying for them,” Peyton said.
Maddox said Peyton had used city equpiment for personal use as well when his lawn mower stopped working and Peyton used the city’s backhoe to move the mower.
“I forgot about that and yes sir I did,” Peyton said. “City employees never step foot on my property to do anything for me.”
“But you have used city equipment,” Maddox said.
“I used a backhoe for 15 minutes and I will gladly pay for it,” Peyton said.
Evans said there were three people on the council – himself, Dudley Hardin and Maddox – whom the mayor dislikes.
“I think there are three of us on the city council you don’t like and I think you’ve done everything you can this against us,” Evans said.
Peyton denied it saying “I’m just aking for accountability and I forgot about that day.
I have no issue paying for it.”
The council agreed an apology from Maddox would be sufficient to resolve the issue.
“I mean, Jesus, it’s five years old,” Hardin said.
“It’s still unresolved,” Peyton said.
“I apologize for anything I’ve done but I’m here to help you,” Maddox said.