Report: 2 ethics attorneys ran private practice on state’s time
Two attorneys for the State Ethics Commission improperly used public resources to operate their private law practice, Inspector General Elizabeth Archer says.
Attorneys Yasha Heidari, who resigned in April, and Tom Plank used state-issued computers to research clients’ cases and abused sick leave, Archer said in a report released today after a nine-month investigation.
They also created a potential conflict by representing a business operated by Champ Walker, who offers his services as a lobbyist, a profession regulated by the ethics commission. Walker is the son of former Senate Majority Leader Charles Walker.
More to come after I get off deadline.
UPDATE: The Ethics Commission released this statement Friday morning:
“The Ethics Commission received the report issued by the Inspector General on July 15, 2010 and met late yesterday afternoon to discuss its findings.
“The Ethics Commission appreciates the diligence and thoroughness with which the Inspector General has conducted its investigation.
“The Commission plans on implementing all recommendations made in the report of the Inspector General immediately. Additionally, the Commission will be reviewing the findings with respect to Mr. Plank and will take any appropriate action.”