Democratic State Representative Charlie Brown of Gary has filed an ethics complaint against Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels with the State’s Inspector General’s Office. However the Governor’s spokesperson, Jane Jankowski calls the complaint “nonsense”.
In the letter, printed below in its entirety, Brown accuses the Governor of using staff and government e-mails for work not related to his office. He also questions Daniels request that renovation work at the Purdue President’s office be halted rises to the level of “ghost employment”. And Brown also questions whether the Governor is violating state ethics rules by “lobbying” the legislature while going to work for Purdue.
However Jankowski tells the AP the Governor was trying to set the record straight when he called on Purdue to halt the work in the President’s office.
September 12, 2012
Office of Inspector General
315 West Ohio Street, Room 104
Indianapolis, Indiana 46202
Dear Inspector General Thomas:
Please consider this letter an official ethics complaint and request for an investigation concerning the inappropriate actions of Governor Mitch Daniels in relation to his recent appointment as future President of Purdue University.
The source of this ethics complaint and the need for an investigation stems from three sources:
1) Governor Daniels clearly misused state property for personal reasons by directing his staff use the state media advisory network and email system to disseminate information clearly unrelated and outside his official duties as Governor (attached exhibit 1) in violation of ethics code 42 IAC 1-5-12;
2) Governor Daniels was quoted (attached exhibit 1) in the aforementioned media advisory as saying he “asked that any work” on the President’s office at Purdue University be cancelled which is clearly inappropriate, and warrants investigation to reveal if these directions and conversations with Purdue rise to the level of ghost employment in violation of ethics code 42 IAC 1-5-13;
3) Finally, despite a publicly circulated informal opinion from your office, any attempt by Governor Daniels’ to lobby the legislature would be a clear violation of Executive Order 05-12, section 8(a) which specifically prohibits any state officer from engaging in lobbying the executive or legislative branches of Indiana for one year after leaving government employment (attached exhibit 2).
Considering the impending end of Governor Daniels’ term of office, the taxpayers of Indiana deserve swift action and investigation into these complaints and alleged violations of the state ethics code.
Please do not in any way consider this letter a criticism of Governor Daniels’ attempt to stop extravagant spending on Purdue’s campus. To let this matter degenerate into a debate about university spending cuts would be a distraction that would disservice the citizens of Indiana who expect and deserve better from our Governor.
I thank you in advance for your attention to this important matter. I would respectfully request a written response reporting the results of your investigation on or before September 25, 2012, and whether you will file a formal ethics complaint with the State Ethics Commission for a hearing.
House District 3
Photo: Evansville Courier Press