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Published: Thursday, 1/26/2012

Ohio treasurer continues missing deposit board meetings

Campaign fundraiser held same day


COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel was in Washington on Thursday to attend a $500-a-plate breakfast fundraiser for his U.S. Senate campaign, continuing his trend of skipping meetings of a board he chairs that handles billions of Ohio's deposits.

The Board of Deposit, which determines which banks hold state money, met Thursday in Columbus, two hours after the start time of the fundraiser. The first-term Republican has not attended any of the monthly meetings of the group, which also includes Auditor Dave Yost and Attorney General Mike DeWine.

The Associated Press first reported Wednesday that Mandel hasn't attended the meetings. Office spokesman Seth Unger said then that Mandel sends a top-notch chief financial officer to the meetings in his place.

Sending a designee has been common practice among his modern-day predecessors, but Mandel is unique for not attending a single meeting.

Unger and campaign spokesman Joe Aquilino did not return voice and e-mail messages left Thursday seeking further information. Messages seeking comment from Yost's spokeswoman were not immediately returned after business hours, and DeWine's office said he declined to comment on the matter.

The fundraiser for Mandel's bid to unseat Ohio's Democratic U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown was given by the state's Republican U.S. Sen. Rob Portman.

Individuals attending the event at Charlie Palmer Steak were asked to donate $500, with political action committees donating $1,000. Hosts of the event were asked to donate $1,000, while hosting PACs were asked for $2,000.

The Associated Press first reported Wednesday that Mandel hasn't attended the Board of Deposit meetings.

Mandel works with a team of proven financial professionals who "share his vision of putting the safety and security of Ohio tax dollars first and foremost," the spokesman for his U.S. Senate campaign, Joe Aquilino, said Wednesday.

"Josh has cleaned up the scandals left by the previous administration, slashed $1.2 million in general revenue fund operating expenses and has demonstrated a strong command over the financial management of the office and the business of the Board of Deposit," he said.


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