Complaint filed against Mayor Wilkerson and candidate Todd Alcott

Mayor Wilkerson and Todd Alcott
Mayor Wilkerson and Todd Alcott(WBKO)
Published: Oct. 9, 2020 at 10:06 AM CDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - 13 News anonymously received a letter which stated an ethics complaint had been sent to the Ethics Commission. The complaint stems from the announcement Wilkerson made that he was not running for re-election, and then endorsed Todd Alcott.

“While the mayor has every right to endorse whomever he likes, he does not have the right to use city property or city resources to do so,” the letter states.

In September, Mayor Wilkerson invited press and announced he was taking his name off the ballot for the upcoming election and would not be running. Wilkerson said the reason is reoccurring health conditions.

“Mayor Wilkerson overstepped his bounds in announcing his endorsement. Upon announcing his endorsement, Wilkerson used his official position to secure special privileges for himself and for candidate Alcott (Code of Ethics 25-4-6),” the letter says. “Further, Wilkerson and Alcott violated 25-9-1 of the city code of ethics which states that ‘no city-owned or city-supported property, vehicle, equipment, labor or service will be used by a public official or employee... in his private use."

Wilkerson said he is aware of the ethics complaint, among others against him and sent 13 News the following:

“The interpretation of the ethics ordinance about using city property for a private event is an inaccurate review of the section. As the city commission chambers is a public venue and available for use by the public, it would be inappropriate to deny a member of the public use of the chambers based on the content of the meeting. The city commission chambers has been used over the past forty years of my recollection for events, announcements, meetings, and celebrations. Some of those include: election forums, business announcements, community organization meetings, receptions, and candidate announcements. Many of the public facilities are used in a similar manner, both reserved and spontaneous, such as: parks, city hall lobby, city hall steps, and other meeting spaces in the city."

“With regard to the section of the complaint being filed against the candidate being endorsed, I believe it to be invalid in that he would not be subject to the ethics ordinance until taking office.”

Wilkerson has been the mayor of Bowling Green for the last 9 years.

Alcott is the only mayor candidate officially on the ballot, but Chris Page and Tom Morris are running as ‘write-in candidates.’

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