Saturday, February 13, 2010

KESPOHL FIB? Council email sparks controversial forum denial

A Columbia Heart Beat Exclusive Report

COLUMBIA, 2/14/10  (Beat Byte) --  Is Third Ward Columbia City Council candidate Gary Kespohl (left) fibbing about an email he allegedly sent to city council members in 2008?
The controversy started with a question from Con-Agg's Larry Moore at last Thursday's Columbia Chamber of Commerce candidate forum:  Why did Third Ward Councilman Karl Skala vote against the Landmark Hospital on old 63, at the edge of the Columbia Country Club?   And how would his challenger, Gary Kespohl -- a long-time Columbia Country Club resident -- have voted himself?

Mr. Skala explained a well-known fact:  Mr. Kespohl's neighbors around the hospital -- including former councilman Bob Hutton -- fervently opposed the new facility.  These neighbors are Mr. Skala's constituents; they live in the Third Ward.

Then Mr. Skala explained a little-known fact, likely because the same question had come up at a previous forum:  Mr. Kespohl himself expressed grave reservations about Landmark Hospital in a May 5, 2008 email to the entire city council.  

But wait!  Mr. Kespohl has been telling voters at forums that he supported the hospital and would have voted for it!  In fact, he's made support of that hospital a key part of his economic development platform! 

"Karl -- I don't -- I don't remember an email like that," Mr. Kespohl said at the Chamber forum.  "Matter of fact, I didn't send it."  


"I've got it right here," said Skala, who is obliged to save all emails to his city council address for potential Sunshine Law requests.

To prove his case, Mr. Skala read the email, then forwarded the email to reporters.  In it, Mr. Kespohl says he is "very concerned about future development" on the land, and even worries that Crawford Construction Company -- the hospital builder -- might make money! 

We provide the disputed email here -- unedited -- along with special tech geek bonus information:  source code headers that allow easy tracking back to the source.   

The email Gary Kespohl denies:

----- Original Message -----
From: Gary Kespohl
To: ; ; ; ; ; ;
Sent: Monday, May 05, 2008 1:39 PM
Subject: Long term hospital proposal

Dear Mayor and Council members,

     I am writing to give you some additional facts which may help in your decision at tonight's council meeting concerning the proposal of the long term hospital care facility. In 1994 I inquired about an R1 lot of about 1.5 acres to build a new home on for my wife and I. I offered $100,000 for the building lot and was told that if I let Crawfoerd Construction build the home I could buy the lot. I already had a builder in mind so we never came to agreement. In 2004 I inquired about purchasing the southern 8.9 acres bordered by Country Club Drive on the north and 763 on the west. We were interested in building a Lutheran School on that peice of ground and were given a price for the land. Again the conditions were that Crawford Construction would have to be the builder, so we declined. The neighborhood was in agreement, that a school would be a perfect neighbor. Only open during the day with little activity in the evenings and none on the weekends. I now understand that the northern tract is to be sold from the McAlester Trust to Elizabeth and Mark Crawford, with the conditions that the hospital be located there and that Crawford Construction be the builder. I am very concerned about future development on these tracts of land because of the conditions under which they are sold. My concern is that if the Construction Company sees a way to make money that the Trust and family will go along with any proposal. If you pass this rezoning request I would hope that it does not set a standard for the use of the remaining land. I think you must consider this possibility very carefully in making your decision.I have asked Elizabeth Crawford directly to consider some sort of promise to not allow more commercial development on the tracts and she has refused. I am very concerned.

Gary Kespohl   

The email Gary Kespohl denies.  Special tech geek bonus information!   

Return-path: <>
Received: from ([])
 by with ESMTP (TLS encrypted); Mon, 05 May 2008 14:32:49 -0500
X-ASG-Debug-ID: 1210015952-11a6002f0000-FoDZz2
Received: from (localhost [])
 by (Spam Firewall) with ESMTP
 id CAA18158FF7; Mon,  5 May 2008 14:32:34 -0500 (CDT)
Received: from ( []) by with ESMTP id Rl4gbFrfZpygfuoS (version=TLSv1 cipher=AES256-SHA bits=256 verify=NO); Mon, 05 May 2008 14:32:32 -0500 (CDT)
Received: from reception ( [])
 (authenticated bits=0)
 by ( with ESMTP id m45JWOYw017200;
 Mon, 5 May 2008 19:32:26 GMT
Message-ID: <000801c8aee7$cb3adcd0$7700a8c0@reception>
From: "Gary Kespohl" <>
To: <>, <>,
        <>, <>,
        <>, <>,
X-ASG-Orig-Subj: Long term hospital proposal
Subject: Long term hospital proposal
Date: Mon, 5 May 2008 14:39:51 -0500
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: multipart/alternative;
X-Priority: 3
X-MSMail-Priority: Normal
X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2800.1914
X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.00.2800.1914
X-Barracuda-Start-Time: 1210015967
X-Barracuda-Encrypted: AES256-SHA
X-Barracuda-Bayes: INNOCENT GLOBAL 0.5194 1.0000 0.7500
X-Barracuda-Virus-Scanned: by City of Columbia Spam Firewall at
X-Barracuda-Spam-Score: 1.60
X-Barracuda-Spam-Status: No, SCORE=1.60 using per-user scores of TAG_LEVEL=3.5 QUARANTINE_LEVEL=1000.0 KILL_LEVEL=6.0 tests=BSF_SC0_TG035a, HTML_MESSAGE, SUSPICIOUS_RECIPS
X-Barracuda-Spam-Report: Code version 3.1, rules version 3.1.49749
 Rule breakdown below
  pts rule name              description
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 0.85 SUSPICIOUS_RECIPS      Similar addresses in recipient list
 0.00 HTML_MESSAGE           BODY: HTML included in message
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  1. Kespohl is a puppet. Vote for the vest man!

  2. Puppet Kespohl has allowed his family members and cronies to run Daniel Boone LL for years for their bennefit. I can only imagine what he would do to Columbia.

  3. Woooo! Columbia is just brimming with intrigue and scandal... not.

  4. I find this very interesting. I had to deal with a Kespohl issue regarding DBLL several summers ago. After watching the video he does come accross as an honest man. I guess this is what we need in our politicians.

  5. Kespohl lied, you don't need that kind of politician.

  6. Do you really want the filth and noise of chickens in your neighbor's back yard? Do you want your property value to go down? Karl Scala does! He voted FOR the chickens! Get him OUT!