Saturday, July 17, 2004

Round 1: Fox cleared by county election board


Records fine, Butler board reports; other charges pending

By John Kiesewetter
Enquirer staff writer

HAMILTON - Butler County Commissioner Michael A. Fox still faces an Ohio Elections Commission hearing next month on his campaign finance reports, even though the county elections board said he has complied with the law.

The Butler County Board of Elections told Fox that "no irregularities were found" in five years of campaign finance reports - 2000 through 2004.

West Chester Township Trustee Catherine Stoker, a Democrat challenging Fox for county commissioner this fall, had questioned $45,280 in Fox's campaign expenses since 2000.

Madge Burton of Oxford, Fox's campaign treasurer, provided boxes of documentation, said Bob Mosketti, elections board director.

Stoker also filed a complaint over Fox's finance reports with the Ohio Elections Commission. The commission has scheduled a review at its Aug. 19 meeting, said Phil Richter, executive director.

At the same time, the state commission will hear a complaint filed against Fox by J. Michael Best, Richter said.

Best, a Fairfield Republican running as an independent against Fox and Stoker, has accused Fox of using an illegal political action committee to help candidates for the Republican Party Central Committee.

Fox also has three pending allegations at the Ohio Ethics Commission. West Chester Township developer Charles Chappell, a fellow Republican, has accused Fox of filing inaccurate travel expense reports in 2001, 2002 and 2003.

E-mail jkiesewetter@enquirer.com




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