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Wichita Council Member Fined Over Ethics Violation

By: KAKE News/Associated Press
By: KAKE News/Associated Press

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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A spokeswoman for the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission says Wichita City Council member Michael O'Donnell was found to have committed an ethics violation.

Last year, O'Donnell used his city email address to send out solicitations for an event for Sen. Garrett Love. Some of the emails were sent while O'Donnell was sitting at the bench during a city council meeting.

O'Donnell issued the following statement after the hearing:

"I'm just relieved that it's over so I can get back to work on important city business. I take full responsibilty of my actions and I'm grateful for the commissions's work and being able to look forward."

O'Donnell was fined $500 for the violation. He calls the incident a mistake and has accused Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer and other council members of leaking information about the ethics investigation to the media in an attempt to smear his name.

Monday, March 19, 2012

The state ethics panel will hear a complaint this week about a Wichita City Council member's email use.

Wichita City Council member Michael O'Donnell has admitted using his city e-mail to send out 39 solicitations for financial sponsors for an Oct. 30 meet-and-greet for his friend, state Sen. Garrett Love, a Republican from Montezuma. Some of the emails were sent from the
bench during a council meeting.

O'Donnell said it was a mistake and he wants to put it behind him.

State law prohibits the use of public resources for any campaign for elective office. O'Donnell faces a hearing Wednesday before the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission, a nine-member commission appointed by the governor, Legislature and state officials.


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