Sunday, April 18, 2010

Guilford County Commissioner Linda Shaw Speaks: Is It Illegal or Ethical on What She Said? Video Embedded

During the Guilford County Commissioners meeting on April 15, 2010, Commissioner Linda Shaw had something to say about the upcoming primary, click on the embedded video above.

As you can see from this video, it seems that Guilford County Commissioner Linda Shaw thinks it is OK to say during a commissioner's meeting that if you live in Stokesdale, Summerfield, Oak Ridge and northern part of Greensboro, Linda Shaw would appreciate your vote for her in the upcoming republican primary.

This might not be illegal, but it sure is unethical for a commissioner to say this during a meeting.

The Guilford County Commissioners meeting gets televised all over the area from cable channel 8 on time warner. This is why we see some people talk about the equal time that opponents want in elections because the incumbents have a huge advantage if they are going to do unethical acts like Commissioner Linda Shaw did during the meeting, in telling people in the third district that she would appreciate their vote.

You can also hear the laughing in the background at the end and the videographer panning back to Chairman Skip Alston laughing.

This was not funny and needs to be addressed by the county attorney.

This type of unethical behavior needs to stop, and for the record the county attorney Mark Payne should completely strike what Commissioner Linda Shaw said from the record, and take it off the county web site of video.

If they repeat this meeting on cable access channel 8 then take it off as well. During the next Guilford County Commissioners meeting, Linda Shaw should state that she made a mistake and would also like to say that you can also vote for Sam Spagnola as well in the primary if you live in oak ridge, summerfield, stokesdale and northern parts of Greensboro for equal time to all candidates.

We will see what happens next, but this act by Commissioner Linda Shaw might not be illegal but surely it is unethical.

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George Hartzman said...

Spag's Response:

"North Carolina General Statute 153A-99 includes, inter alia, the following prohibitions against county employees:

No employee while on duty or in the workplace may:

...(c) Use his or her official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the result of an election or nomination for political office;

...(e) No employee may use county funds, supplies, or equipment for partisan purposes, or for political purposes except where such political uses are otherwise permitted by law.

I guess the loophole for Shaw is that she probably does not qualify as an "employee" although the law defines an "employee" as anyone employed by the county in a program or department that is supported in whole or in part by county funds. Certainly, the county pays her Commissioners salary.

There is no doubt the audio and video were county equipment and that Shaw was speaking on county time during an official county meeting."

Anonymous said...

Nothing comes from nothing.......................................................

J. Barker said...

Sounds like several local politicians are stretching the ethical limits these days. Why not ask State Senator Katie Dorsett how Gladys Robinson got on the ballot..... Katie knew that County Commissioner Bruce Davis, among others, wanted to run for her District 28 Senate seat. Bruce had run against her in 2008, but because she was the incumbent, he was unsuccessful. So to keep opposition from her friend Gladys Robinson, Katie, Alma Adams, and Gladys Robinson waltzed into the Board of Elections office 1/2 hour prior to closing for filing to run and removed Katie's name from running and wrote in her friend, Gladys Robinson. Illegal or unethical? Unfortunately, not illegal, but definitely unethical. Don't believe me? Ask Former Mayor Yvonne Johnson who also wanted to run. Or, give County Commissioner Bruce Davis a call. It's no wonder people have a bad taste in their mouths when someone mentions "politics" and why the Tea Party movement is so successful!
My advice: Be an informed citizen and vote accordingly!

triadwatch said...

j barker you are correct and if i was a member of the democrat party of guilford county i would be livid to have the maneuver that Katie Dorsett did in regards to her senate seat.

One aspect of all of this is that this gives a republican in Trudy Wade a real good chance of winning this seat for the republicans.

We know now that Bruce Davis is trying to get his name on the ballot and if he succeeds then it will split the democratic vote and probably let Dr. Wade waltz right on in.

This will be a interesting race to see.

At the end of the day we need to get rid of gerrymandered districts all over this state.