Complaint filed with Ethics Board over McDonald Business Deal

October 16, 2007

Few examples better illustrate Edwin “Fast Eddie” Edwards / Kathleen “24-hours” Blanco cronyism than this story.

My friend Sam “Sammy” Hanna, Jr. deserves many “kudos” for scooping the local “news giants”. KNOE, KTVE, and the Newsstar are still reeling that they are not the premier news outlet in NELA.
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When asked, Sammy gave full permission to post the article in its entirety.

HOWEVER, Sammy is a friend, and friends give friends their due credit.

Great article, Sam. I enjoy working with you to work for a NEW Louisiana. (I still think it is too bad Paul, did not run for AG)
Complaint filed with Ethics Board over McDonald Business Deal

“The state Ethics Board will investigate whether Rep. Charles McDonald violated any ethics rules or regulations over the sale of his office building to a political supporter, a Monroe attorney said Monday in an e-mail communication with The Ouachita Citizen.”

“The state Ethics Board will investigate whether Rep. Charles McDonald violated any ethics rules or regulations over the sale of his office building to a political supporter, a Monroe attorney said Monday in an e-mail communication with The Ouachita Citizen……….”

“I can confirm that the Ethics Board received this notification and a narrative of the details of the transaction this afternoon,” Hurd continued. “My client has been informed that the Board will conduct an investigation of the payment to Representative McDonald consistent with its established policies……….”

“Rep. Charles McDonald engaged in a real estate transaction with a Morehouse Parish corporation that yielded thousands of dollars for McDonald and produced more than $50,000 in taxpayer-funded rental payments to a longtime political supporter and personal friend.

That’s according to public records at the Morehouse Parish Courthouse, the state House of Representatives and the Secretary of State’s office. McDonald also spoke with The Ouachita Citizen about the matter Wednesday morning.

According to public records at the Morehouse Parish Clerk of Court’s office, McDonald paid $15,500 in 1993 for an office at 303 North Franklin, Bastrop. He used the space to house a local legislative office for his District 14 seat in the House of Representatives. McDonald was first elected to the House in 1991.

On March 20, 2000, McDonald sold his office at 303 North Franklin to Morehouse Rentals Inc. McDonald said Morehouse Rentals is owned by Bastrop attorney Travis Holley.

According to public records, Morehouse Rentals Inc. paid McDonald $42,000 for the office building at 303 North Franklin.

On the same day McDonald sold his office building to Morehouse Rentals, he signed a long-term lease with Morehouse Rentals to continue using the site as his legislative office for $575 a month in rental payments. The lease is valid through Jan. 1, 2008. The House of Representatives makes the monthly rental payments since the office is used as McDonald’s legislative office.

Since 2000, Morehouse Rentals has collected at least $51,000 in rental payments to house McDonald’s legislative office, or some $9,000 more than Morehouse Rentals paid for the property in 2000.

Through the years, Holley has contributed to McDonald’s campaign fund, including a $500 contribution this year, according to campaign finance reports filed with the state Board of Ethics.

McDonald dismissed suggestions the sale of his office building appeared to be a “sweetheart” deal for a political ally or that he made an exorbitant profit on the building…………”

Please read the article in its entirity at http://www.ouachitacitizen.com/news.php?id=1390

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