Complaint: Councilwoman Tamaya Dennard violated state law by paying herself from campaign fund

Updated: Feb. 11, 2020 at 5:06 PM EST
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CINCINNATI (FOX19/CINCINNATI ENQUIRER) - A Republican lawyer has filed a complaint with the Ohio Elections Commission against Democratic Cincinnati City Councilwoman Tamaya Dennard.

The complaint, filed Monday by Mark Miller, makes allegations against Dennard, her campaign committee, Friends of Tamaya Dennard, and her campaign treasurer, Kevin Tighe.

Miller states in the complaint that two payments totaling $2,700 listed in her 2019 campaign finance report were paid to Dennard for “consulting".

The complaint says that there were no documents to support or justify the payments.

Miller sites a Cincinnati Enquirer article in which Tighe described the payments as essentially “kind of drawing a salary”.

According to the Enquirer, Tighe later said he misspoke and would file an amended report to list the payments as reimbursement for campaign expenses.

Miller says in the complaint that Dennard, Tighe and Dennard’s campaign committee violated a section of the Ohio Revised Code that, “specifically prohibits a beneficiary of a campaign fund or other person from converting for person use anything of value from the campaign fund, including payments to a beneficiary for services the beneficiary personally performs, except as reimbursement for certain campaign-related expenses.”

A hearing date has been set for April 9 at 10 a.m. at the Ohio Election Commission office in Columbus.

The only way Dennard would not have to appear is if Miller withdrew his complaint.

If the commission determines Dennard violated state election law, she could face a fine or another penalty.

We have reached out to Tamaya Dennard and Kevin Tighe for comment. We’ll update this story when we do.

Copyright 2020 WXIX. All rights reserved. The Cincinnati Enquirer contributed to this report.