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Letter: Clarifies information

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Dear Editor,

I would like to respond to the letter written by Theresa Johnson in The March 22 paper in regard to my husband, Jim Traeger, who currently serves on the St. Joseph Town Board.

Ms. Johnson who was the previous town chair, should tell the truth and state all the facts before misinforming the citizens of St. Joe.

While on a very nice and relaxing family road trip last August, my husband received a phone call from our current Town Chair Dan Gavin. He called Jim to inform him that the town clerk/treasurer at the time, Mary Stanley, had been removed from her position and was currently being investigated for improper handling of the town business and finances. It was also discovered that my husband's personal file, and a couple other board member files, had gone missing. These files contain private and personal information along with social security numbers. In a time when identity theft and fraud is a major problem in this country, I trust that the people of St. Joe would agree that $297 to Lifelock (fraud protection company) is a small price to pay to a serving member of this town since his private information was compromised while under the watch of a town official.

Major companies and banks provide this service free of charge to their employees or customers when their files have been breached. It was also discovered that unauthorized people were given access to the office all hours of the day and night before Mary Stanley had been removed from her position. In addition to that, a background check was done on my husband and another current town board member without their knowledge or authorization, at the town's expense.

My family has also been personally harassed and threatened by another former town clerk/treasurer's husband, Butch Schmidt. A police report was filed and recorded regarding that incident on 11/05/2010.

It is so unfortunate that our current town officials who are sacrificing a lot of their personal time to make this town a better place, continue to be the targets of bullying and childish tactics.

I wish that the citizens of this great town could know all the hours and hard work this current board has had to endure, trying to clean up and fix the messes that were made in this town.

Tammy Traeger, Town of St. Joseph

Editor's note: Parts of this letter were edited last week because of references to the April 3 election. The writer requested that information (some of which was edited last week) be included this week's Star-Observer.

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