CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Kanawha County Commission voted Tuesday to set aside at least $50,000 and as much as $100,000 to pay for the special prosecutor appointed to handle domestic violence related cases in connection with the Mark Plants controversy.

County Circuit Judge Duke Bloom appointed retired prosecutor Don Morris and three assistant prosecutors to form a team to handle the cases while Plants, the elected Kanawha County prosecutor, waits out two misdemeanor charges that have to do with the alleged violation of a protective order and domestic battery.

“The work of the prosecutor’s office has to proceed whether it’s done by Mr. Plants or done on an interim basis by someone else, the work they do is very important,” Kanawha County Commissioner Dave Hardy said.

Judge Bloom ruled that Morris is to be paid $200-an-hour. The assistants are already on the county payroll.

“The cost is expensive,” Hardy said. “We went ahead and set aside at least 50-thousand dollars but we actually have 100-thousand dollars in a contingency fund to use if we need to.”

Plants is fighting the misdemeanor charges. He’s also awaiting a ruling from the state Supreme Court on whether his law license will be suspended for a period of time.

Commissioner Hardy said the county commission is committed to paying the special prosecutor to handle other domestic cases.

“I hope we don’t need to spend that much money on this issue but we will do whatever it takes until we get a clarification from the Supreme Court on the status of Mark Plants,” Hardy said.

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  • Voter

    Fire Plants and replace him. Save the money for important issues. Had any employee pulled a stunt like this in the private sector they would have been long gone.

  • William Glasser

    Do prosecutors have to be bonded or insured ?

    or Does the County recover its money by taking his house ?

  • Mason County Contrarian

    A suggestion for a new motto for Kanawha County "Magna Pecunia Jurisprudensus": roughly translated--there's mucho $$$$$$ in the law.

  • What a waste

    What a waste of desperately needed money. This money could be going towards replenishing these bad roads that's causing serious problems for hard working citizens who depend on there vehicle for just about everything.

  • hondo

    Maybe Judge Bloom doesn't care about spending Kanawha County money; maybe the commissioners should have stood up to him and resisted. Maybe, just maybe, Mark Plants is not guilty. What a waste, just for show.

    • Aaron

      It doesn't matter if he is guility or not. He has compromised his office. He should be fired.

  • Gary Karstens

    And if found guilty, then how much?!?!?!?!