Some state lawmakers want to crack down on public officials who knowingly use public funds for political purposes. Currently, Ohio’s state auditor can find problems like that in an audit and issue a finding for recovery. But this bill would make it a first degree misdemeanor, similar to other violations of campaign finance laws. Secretary of State Jon Husted says that should make people think twice before trying to mix public funds and politics.
Auditor Dave Yost says the issue recently came to light in an audit of the Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority. Findings of recovery were issued after it was discovered that agency loaned money to the organization that was in charge of the regional transit authority’s levy campaign.