Tuesday, February 5th, 2013
By Amy Kronenberger
Board member cleared of ethics violation
St. Marys schools
  ST. MARYS - An investigation into a possible ethics violation for school board member Brian Little has been dismissed.
The Ohio Ethics Commission in November began an investigation over conflict of interest after Little recommended the higher of two bids for snow plow services from a company he had worked for part time.
The ethics commission recently sent a letter to county prosecutor Ed Pierce, saying its investigation did not find a violation. Pierce said he agreed with the finding and would not pursue the matter further.
In August, board members hired Whitney Painting and Sandblasting, St. Marys, at $947 per event to handle snow plow services for the district per Little's recommendation. After some board members objected to choosing the higher of two bids, Little argued for Whitney, saying the company was the more responsible choice and had worked for the school previously and he knew they could handle the job.
The other bidder was HDL Property Services, St. Marys, at $789 per event.
Resident Bob Valentine in November accused Little of the ethics violation, saying he should have abstained from voting since he worked for the company. Little initially denied working for the company but later admitted he had worked for Whitney on a part-time basis the last two years.
Little said he was on-call for snow events in February 2011 while on leave from work as an Auglaize County sheriff's deputy. He helped with three snow events during that month. He also worked for the company in April for a little over a week cleaning out propane tanks.
The law states a board member needs to abstain from discussion when he or she either currently works for or plans to work for that company in the future.
"Neither is true, so I didn't think it was a conflict of interest," Little had said. "I know the Whitneys, but I wouldn't get anything for recommending them. I just believed they were the more responsible choice."
Little on Monday refused to comment.
Superintendent Shawn Brown said he was glad the ordeal was over.
"I'm glad we have it behind us," he said. "We have bigger issues to take care of."
Additional online stories for this date
Print and E-Edition only stories for this date
• Local response to plan
• BOE approves 2013 employee retirements
• Committee learns ideas for improvement projects
• Four men charged after troopers seize pills, gun
• MILC payments to resume
• St. Marys defeated by Greenville
a_d
Saturday
66°
Chance Rain Showers
40%
Saturday Night
53°
Chance Rain Showers
30%
Sunday
70°
Chance Rain Showers
26%
Sunday Night
54°
Mostly Cloudy
9%
Monday
70°
Mostly Cloudy
7%
Monday Night
54°
Partly Cloudy
3%
Tuesday
74°
Partly Sunny
3%
Tuesday Night
56°
Mostly Clear
5%
Wednesday
78°
Mostly Sunny
7%
Wednesday Night
58°
Partly Cloudy
17%
Thursday
76°
Chance Rain Showers
31%
Thursday Night
56°
Chance Rain Showers
34%
3 Day
Extended
a_d
a_da_da_d
video_logoOnline Video
Tuesday, September 27
index pict
Arrest in child death
camera_logo Photo Albums
Friday, September 30
index pict
Friday, September 30
index pict
Friday, September 30
index pict