Monday, August 30, 2010

House Ethics Committee on Hart Will Meet in September

Posted By on Mon, Aug 30, 2010 at 11:41 AM

It looks like it will be mid-September before a special House Ethics Committee will reconvene to consider Athol Republican Rep. Phil Hart's tax issues.

Iona Republican Rep. Tom Loertscher, the Committee chairman, told Citydesk, "I've been on the phone all morning, trying to get a hold of the committee members so that we can get together. But I've had zero luck."

Loertscher said he wants to meet "sooner than later, but it will not be happening sooner than the next 10 days."

Earlier this summer, the same committee voted to clear Hart of a conflict-of-interest charge in connection with his failure to pay state and federal income taxes.The ethics committee delayed any decision on a charge of abuse of legislative privilege, pending a ruling from the State Board of Tax Appeals. Last week, the board ruled against Hart in his appeal to delay paying back taxes, saying his appeal was not filed in a timely manner.

That clears the way for the Ethics Committee to gather again to consider Hart's fate.

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