Monday, June 23, 2014

Foster County Commissioner Straley Authorized Phone Calls To Be Recorded

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Foster County Commissioner Chairman Paul Straley admitted that he set up a device to record phone calls which come in to Sheriff Tufte's office (which also includes Auditor Risovi's office) at the courthouse. According to ND state law, it is legal to record phone calls without telling both parties as long as one party agrees to it. (Many states do not allow this, saying that it is illegal to record phone calls without all parties knowing they are being recorded. Personally, I support this viewpoint. Ethically speaking, I think it is only right to let someone know that he/she is being recorded.)

Nevertheless, whether it is legal, illegal or unethical to record a person's phone calls without telling them, some of the recorded calls at the auditor's office document some interesting facts about Teresa Risovi's performance as auditor of Foster County.

The recorded phone call which Commissioner Jim Carr wanted to be played for the public to hear, was vehemently objected to by Chairman Straley at two different times during the meeting. The phone call in question recorded Auditor Risovi using profanity against State's Attorney Paul Murphy, as well as a very rude, unkind description of his secretary. Also, Risovi threatened Murphy that if he didn't show her some respect, she would immediately go to the sheriff's office (and do what, you might wonder.). 

You might also wonder why Auditor Risovi would say the things she did, knowing that her call was being recorded. Apparently the recording device had a technical aspect to it that Straley and Risovi weren't aware of. You see, after the main phone call message was done, the machine kept quietly recording and minutes later recorded the conversation that was going on in the background - apparently unbeknownst to Risovi and the person who was helping her with the recording device. It should also be noted that in the phone tape Auditor Risovi is angrily complaining about the "mousy little secretary's" husband who has been upstairs recording her; yet she is recording the calls of every single citizen/person who makes a call to her office without telling them. What a hypocrite!!

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