Legislative Ethics Commission Reaches Agreement on Hoover Sexual Harassment Case

04/10/2018 01:31 PM

FRANKFORT- Former House Speaker Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, has reached a settlement with the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission over a sexual harassment case.

The agreement with the ethics commission prosecutor was reached behind closed doors. Under the agreement, Rep. Hoover was required to acknowledge that he violated state ethics laws while text messaging with a female legislative employee, pay a $1,000 fine, and admit his wrongdoing to the commission.

During his statement to the commission, Hoover reiterated his banter with the female staffer was “inappropriate.”

“From day one I have acknowledged, publicly, privately, that the text message banter with the staffer was inappropriate,” he said. “I acknowledge that again here today, I acknowledge that would violate the state ethics statute. This entire situation has been very difficult for me and for my family, physically, emotionally.”

Terms of the settlement required that the text messages and the original settlement become public. The commission approved the settlement with only one member voting nay. John Philips, the attorney for the legislative employee, said she agrees to the terms.

This agreement comes a a week after an ethics complaint against Representatives Brian Linder, Jim DeCesare and Michael Meredith were all dropped by the commission following numerous requests from their lawyers claiming the complaint was not valid.

The complaints stemmed from a secret sexual harassment settlement in which the female staffer received a settlement payment of $110,000, which the four lawmakers paid using no public money.

An order must be signed stating the agreement reached for the case to be “legally over” according to Legislative ethics commissioner prosecutor Michael Malone, which he says must be done within 30 days.

Michon Lindstrom

Michon is a producer for Pure Politics. Michon comes to Kentucky from Springfield, Illinois where she served as the statehouse reporter for the NBC affiliate. During her time in the Land of Lincoln she covered the state’s two year budget impasse and the largest school funding overall in Illinois history. Pure Politics airs weeknights at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Michon on Twitter at @MichonLindstrom or reach her by email at michon.lindstrom@charter.com

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