Hoover still House Speaker, Osborne gavels into opening day

01/03/2018 01:17 AM

FRANKFORT — The beginning of the 2018 60-day budget writing session started with questions over leadership as Speaker Pro Tem David Osborne graveled into session, and Rep. Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, asserted his position as Speaker of the House.

Hoover, who publicly resigned as House Speaker Nov. 5 amid reports of an alleged sexual harassment settlement, sent a letter to the body allowing Osborne to lead the chamber until further notice. The new House clerk, who assumed the role on Tuesday after Brad Metcalf was fired on Monday, read the letter to the House of Representatives.

The Legislative Ethics Commission is investigating the settlement.

After the opening day of the session, Osborne confirmed that Hoover was indeed still the Speaker of the House.

“According to the memorandum that was filed with the House, Jeff Hoover is still the Speaker of the House,” Osborne told reporters. “As Speaker Pro Tem, I am the presiding officer of the House, so I am controlling the operations of the House.”

The House Republicans also passed new rules which allow Hoover to pass his duties to Osborne. The rule change, and refusal to resign his position to the body comes in lock-step with a move first reported by Pure Politics in December to keep Hoover in his position as House Speaker.

House Majority Floor Leader Jonathan Shell, R-Lancaster, also read a list of new rules for the House — including a process to deal with disciplining members of the body.

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