Letter: Lima: Home of nepotism

Lima recently hired five police officers, three who have relatives working for the city. An ordinance is needed to curtail nepotism. Because of this, I will not support David Berger in the election this year. Twenty-eight years in office is enough.

The Ohio Ethics Law and related statutes in the Ohio Revised Code (Chapter 102 and Sections 2921.42 and 2921.43) generally prohibit public officials and employees from misusing their official positions for their own personal benefit or the benefit of their family members. This Ethics Law applies to all people who serve as officials and employees for public agencies in Ohio. Public Agencies include state departments, boards, and commissions, counties, cities, villages, townships, school districts, public universities, public libraries, port authorities and all other public entities.

While the Ethics Law does not absolutely prohibit relatives from working for the same public agency, questions of fairness and impartiality may arise in such situations. Further, such hires may present the appearance of impropriety to the public, even where the public official fully and completely removes herself from participating in the hiring process. The Ethics laws and related statues are criminal laws. If a person is convicted or violating an ethics law, that person may receive a jail sentence and / or have a fine levied against them up to 18 months in prison and/or a $5000 fine.

These are hard times for all people. With the employment of relatives by the city, others do not have the opportunity to obtain steady employment. I believe that an amendment should be applied to the charter that would totally eliminate this practice.

Diane Sharp, Delphos

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