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Ethics Complaint Filed Against Oconee County Commission Chairman Melvin Davis

Photo Credit: Lee Becker

Melvin Davis.

Oconee County Attorney Daniel Haygood has referred to Special Master James C. Warnes an ethics complaint that Sarah Bell has filed against Oconee County Board of Commissioners Chairman Melvin Davis.

Bell contends that Davis violated at least eight sections of the county’s ethics code by “using taxpayer money to pay an employee and to prepare and purchase plans” for the reconnection of Old Mars Hill Road to Mars Hill Road proper “as a special favor for one citizen.”

Bell filed a similar complaint with Attorney General Sam Olens but was informed that the Attorney General’s Office “has no legal authority or jurisdiction” to investigate local governmental “internal operations or procedures.”

Bell also has sent her complaint to District Attorney Ken Mauldin.

Bell argues Davis worked “behind the scenes” to do a favor for a friend. In the process, she wrote, Davis used county employee time and county money inappropriately.

Moreland Altobelli Associates has billed the county for $9,991.60 to cover the design work for the possible reconnection of Old Mars Hill Road to Mars Hill Road, now under reconstruction.

In addition, according to Bell, Public Works Director Emil Beshara worked “multiple days” since February of this year on the project with both Moreland Altobelli and the Georgia Department of Transportation.

For more, visit Oconee County Observations.