County employee responds to Knebel’s letter to the editor

I offer this as a direct rebuttal to your last “Letter to the Editor,” from the former County Board chairman, Mr. Knebel. I was one of the topics of his long letter of half-truths. So here is the rest of the story as it relates to me and only me. Please keep in mind, Mr. Knebel was in my wedding and was someone I considered a friend. However, obviously friendship means nothing when you are trying to defend yourself from the allegation of criminal activity.
I was not a “new hire” into the State’s Attorney’s Office when the victim witness coordinator resigned. Her full-time position was offered to the office staff by Mr. Morrison, but nobody wanted it, so it was offered to me.
I worked at the Fayette County Health Department for 10 years before I transferred to the State’s Attorney’s Office. For 10 years, my paychecks were issued by the County Treasurer’s office. Mr. Knebel tried his hardest to force the State’s Attorney to drop my pay to $9 an hour, saying I was a “new hire.” I refuse to go into further detail here because it involves a mutual friend, and I am not that type of person.  
This position is a grant position, paid for by the state. The money the Fayette County taxpayers pay toward my salary was (at the time) less than $1.40 per hour. I now cost the taxpayers a whopping $1.83 per hour. His entire argument was over that tiny amount, which ironically was $5 per hour less than the previous victim witness coordinator was paid.
I also save the taxpayers money, because I do not require insurance benefits (the previous person received them) and the county does not pay me extra for refusing them.
There’s the rest of the story. I took a grant position, and Mr. Knebel insisted that I be paid less than the grant, which is illegal. Mr. Knebel’s whole argument was to distract from the facts, and if you read his statement, it is actually an admission of guilt. He encouraged the county clerk to hire his friend. The county board chairman  “encouraged,” and when it didn’t happen, the entire county budget was frozen. Coincidence? Not likely.
And why is Mr. Knebel so insistent to have Mr. Friedel elected? Mr. Friedel represented him during his criminal investigation, as well as letting the Knebels live in his house while the Knebels were having their new home built.
I’ve had several people ask me this also – Why did Mr. Morrison have Mr. Knebel investigated?  I can tell you this much – any time allegations are made or charges are filed and it involves someone Josh Morrison is a friend of or works with, Mr. Morrison immediately refers the case to a special prosecutor. I’ve seen it multiple times. It’s required by law and could cost him his law license if he didn’t.
Here’s the real question – Why did Mr. Knebel quit the county board? Do innocent people quit for no reason? I sure wouldn’t! Of course, his monthly $8,069.58 state retirement check was on the line.
If you know me, you know I’m not a big fan of writing letters to the editor. But those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.
Kira Palmer


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