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Alabama Elections Directory 2006

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Friday, December 16, 2005

Feds Harass Grantland

After a year long probe into a potential conflict between his state job and role as a legislator, federal officials have forced State Rep Ronald Grantland (D - Hartselle) to leave his job at the state Department of Public Health.

A federal judge ruled that holding both positions put Grantland in violation of the Hatch Act. Thus Grantland decided to retire, instead of leaving the legislature. The Hatch Act prohibits government employees from participating in partisan elections, but is usually only applied to those at the federal level. I haven't seen a specific reason why the judge applied it to Grantland, a state employee, in this situation. Indeed, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel only notified Grantland of a potential violation in the middle of his second term.

Grantland's decision to leave his state job lets the matter drop and it is unlikely the issue will be a major factor in his upcoming race for re-election. But with all the potential conflicts of interest brewing in the state legislature, it's odd that the Feds would choose Grantland, a healthcare worker, to make an example of.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

he will win again.

10:22:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, why doesnt it apply to all those AEA members who are in the legislator, and all those jr college employees in the legislature. Seems like if a federal law will apply at the state level it would apply to public health and any other agency such as schools or colleges. public health receives federal funds as do schools.
Maybe some enterprising young turk can file a complaint with the proper federal authorities that would result in a mass exodus from our legislature????

10:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reason the feds came after him under the Hatch Act is because part of his salary was paid with federal dollars. That is why the federal Hatch Act applied. Had he been paid solely with state or local monies the feds would not have had a case.

3:17:00 PM  
Blogger PoliSciZac said...

Good info by the last poster. That seems to explain it. The Decatur Daily didn't delve into the details.

Also to the second poster, educators are exempt from the Hatch act.

4:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, lets start an alabama version of the hatch act that prohibits state employees from obtaining lobbying fees and contracts. lets also prohibit those who work for the government (teachers etc) from serving in elected office. that is a jumpstart to making our government ethical

3:01:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excuse me, all those rocket scientist teachers from AEA and the JUCO's are paid with federal dollars. they are no different than Grantland. Where is the outrage?

9:34:00 AM  
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