Thursday, January 22, 2004

Westwood foe claims he took from her Web

Around Northern Kentucky

Pat Crowley

When state senate candidate Kathy Groob clicked on the Web site of her opponent - Republican Sen. Jack Westwood of Crescent Springs - she thought something looked familiar.

So familiar, in fact, she's accused Westwood - a retired high school journalism teacher - of copying features and lifting codes off of her Web site,

"I imagine Sen. Westwood has taught many a student about avoiding plagiarism," said Groob, a Fort Mitchell Democrat. "Perhaps he missed the lesson."

Groob's campaign even had Cincinnati lawyer Gregory Lunn write Westwood to accuse him of copyright infringement.

"If you remove all matter from your Web site which was generated by this infringing code, we will consider this matter resolved," Lunn wrote.

Scott Sedmak, Westwood's spokesman, said the charges are baseless.

The section of that Groob disputes is a listing of Kenton County precincts in the 23rd Senate District. The links are similar on both sites. Groob and Democratic Party officials allege that Westwood's camp lifted the codes for the precinct links.

Some minor coding mistakes made by Groob's Web designer even show up on Westwood's site, the Groob campaign has charged.

But Sedmak said the information and the links came from the Northern Kentucky Area Planning Commission, not from Groob's campaign site.

"We didn't copy it, we didn't paste it," Sedmak said. "On Jack's old Web site from the last campaign, he also listed precincts.

"She is attacking Jack's character, and that is wrong," he said. "But it's typical of a candidate who has no issues to stand on."

Dems say they will be logging on, however, to see if Westwood makes any changes.

THE COMMISH CANDIDATES: Tuesday's deadline to file for most offices on the November ballot could bring out some interesting candidates in the Covington City Commission race.

City Hall sources say former commissioner Jim Eggemeier and criminal defense lawyer Rob Sanders, a former assistant Kenton County Commonwealth Attorney, may run.

LEFT OUT: Last week's Around Northern Kentucky item on the $10 million condominium community, which is being developed in Florence by Racon Development LLC, should have mentioned that The Villas of Southfork project was designed by the Kentucky division of CDS Associates Inc., a Cincinnati architecture and engineering firm.

THEY SAID IT: "Major, major changes in the way everything is approached in the Senate as far as Kentucky is concerned." - U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Southgate, on the impact if fellow Kentuckian Mitch McConnell becomes Senate Majority Leader in 2006. Bunning may also run for leadership.


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