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Swallow probe panel seeks crackdown on data destruction
Swallow scandal » Bipartisan committee unveils proposed ethics and election reforms.

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Committee members received a draft of their special counsel’s final report. Under law, that report will not be publicly released for 21 days so revisions and corrections can occur.

Dunnigan said the panel has spent $3.8 million on its probe, including $1 million trying to recover data missing from Swallow’s digital devices and litigating subpoena fights.

At a glance

Reyes responds to fleet audit

Attorney General Sean Reyes renewed a commitment to holding his office accountable in its use and documentation of its 54-vehicle fleet, according to a statement released Wednesday.

Reyes, who cited the results of a state audit, said he has “already taken certain actions related to the report.”

The audit examined how the attorney general’s office was using and managing its vehicles, 16 of which were shared and 38 of which were assigned to staffers with “commute privileges,” meaning the cars can be taken home.

Among the actions Reyes has already taken is stripping vehicle privileges from two non-investigator employees, who the audit found were not documenting their vehicle use correctly. Auditors raised questions about the necessity of the assigned cars to these workers in the first place.

The audit examined car use from July 1, 2012, through 2013 and did not include any information or analysis of how embattled ex-Attorney General John Swallow used his state car, which was given to him as part of his compensation package.

Reyes stated if the office finds it has a surplus of vehicles, he will return the extra to the state.

“Where we find inadequate rules, we will replace them with higher standards,” Reyes said in the statement. “Where there are adequate rules laxly or inconsistently applied, we will be consistent.”

He also said employees will undergo training to better clarify ethics protocols and practices.

Marissa Lang

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Additionally, legislation stemming from the Swallow investigation would tighten some requirements for candidates to disclose financial information on their conflict-of-interest forms. More specifically, it would define an officer of a company and require a candidate to disclose involvement with a company in the year before the filing.

Swallow did not disclose his role in some companies because he removed his name as an officer the day he filed his financial-disclosure form.

It would be a class B misdemeanor for a candidate not to file a conflict-of-interest form or to file false information on it. There are no penalties under current law.


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