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Statement Regarding Ethics Complaints

Date: 
February 24, 2011

MADISON, WI – Kevin J. Kennedy, director and general counsel of the Government Accountability Board, issued the following statement:

“We are living and working in historic political times.  The Government Accountability Board recognizes that many Wisconsinites have passionate views regarding the budget repair bill now before the Legislature, as well as actions taken by elected officials on both sides of the issue.

“As a result, the G.A.B. is now receiving many complaints asking the Board to investigate or become involved in what is, in essence, a political controversy.  Board members and staff of the G.A.B. read and watch the same news accounts as everyone else.  Not every action of a public officeholder that a citizen may disagree with constitutes a violation of the Ethics Code for State Public Officials or of campaign finance laws.

“The G.A.B. is an independent, non-partisan agency.  The public can be assured the G.A.B. will investigate the activities of public officials where there is a reasonable basis to do so.  However, the G.A.B. has no authority over procedural rules of the Legislature, and cannot insert itself into the political and legislative debate regarding the budget repair bill. 

“The public can find additional information about the G.A.B.’s complaint process at http://gab.wi.gov/complaints.  Complaints will not be taken by telephone.

“We are prohibited by law from acknowledging or talking about any investigation.  We are also prohibited by law from disclosing what advice we have given to specific public officeholders, unless that advice is made public by the official.”

 

For more information, contact: 

Reid Magney, public information officer, 608-267-7887

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