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New Frontiers In Political Ethics

FRANKFORT, Ky. (CN) - Nepotism is legal in Kentucky, property valuation administrators in 10 counties say. The officials say the Kentucky Executive Branch Ethics Commission put them at risk of fines and losing their jobs by investigating them for hiring relatives.

The county officials do not deny hiring spouses, parents or children. But they say, "There is no constitutional, statutory, or regulatory prohibition against members of a family within any degree of sanguinity from being employed in the same workplace in Kentucky State government. Attorney General Opinion 88-15 state '(n)either the Personnel (Secretary) nor the Personnel Board has authority to promulgate a regulation concerning 'nepotism.'"

They add: "(N)o other public official has been, or is being prosecuted by the Commission for personnel decisions related to a family member, other than the plaintiffs."

Plaintiffs are represented in Franklin County Court by Luke Morgan with McBrayer, McGinnis, Leslie of Lexington.

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