Secretary of state: Betras not competent to sit on elections board

YOUNGSTOWN — The Ohio secretary of state says Mahoning County Democratic Chairman David Betras is not “competent” to serve as a county board of elections member.

In a three-page letter to Betras, Secretary of State Jon Husted wrote that the chairman’s “wrongful conduct” when he served as treasurer of ex-Attorney General Marc Dann’s transition account disqualified Betras as a board member.

Betras said the decision by Husted, a Republican, “drips with partisanship. It was done to embarrass the Democratic Party.”

Betras was criticized by the state inspector general and the Ohio Ethics Commission for his handling the account.

Betras was never criminally charged for his involvement.

“I was specifically told by the inspector general that I was not the target,” Betras said.

After lengthy investigations, the only conviction related to the account was a misdemeanor against Dann for giving $5,000 from the account to a staff member. Dann resigned May 14, 2008, under pressure after being accused of running an unprofessional office after serving for less than 17 months.

For the complete story, read Tuesday’s Vindicator and

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