Ethics Complaints Against White Sulphur Springs Mayor Resolved - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Ethics Complaints Against White Sulphur Springs Mayor Resolved

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS -

The mayor of White Sulphur Springs admits he should not have used the town's credit card and petty cash fund for personal use, according to a conciliation agreement recently approved by the West Virginia Ethics Commission.

The Sept. 6 agreement resolved ethics complaints against Thomas Taylor, the West Virginia Ethics Commission recently announced.

The complaint alleged Taylor used the credit card buy gasoline for both personal and business use, totaling $25. The complaint further alleged he used the card without authorization to buy meals while conducting town business with town council members and while working alone through dinner time. This totaled $178.74

The complaint also asserted Taylor bought unauthorized meals, totaling $20, for his wife when she accompanied him to the 2012 Municipal League Conference in Charleston.

The ethics complaint additionally alleged Taylor used the town's credit card to make several purchases, including $169.86 for auto parts for his personal vehicle, $124 for a hotel room for his mother and aunt when his uncle was awaiting emergency open heart surgery at Charleston Area Medical Center and a $13 charge to the city's EZ pass for personal use.

The complaint notes Taylor repaid the city for these amounts after charging them and the city did not incur any extra cost.

Taylor could face a fine up to $250, and he also must attend training on the Ethics Act and pay restitution in the amount of $223.74 for personal use of gasoline and unauthorized food purchases, the conciliation agreement states.

City employees and city council members also must attend the training.

 "I now realize that this is wrong and that just because others have done it in the past does not make it appropriate," the conciliation of violation read.

Earlier this year, Taylor successfully challenged city council members and a newly-appointed mayor seeking reinstatement after an unsuccessful attempt to rescind his resignation. 

Taylor filed the suit in November 2011 in Greenbrier Circuit Court saying the city council appointed the new mayor without allowing him to rescind his resignation, WVNS-TV reported.

According to WVNS, Taylor was reinstated in June, and Pocahontas and Greenbrier County Circuit Judge Joseph Pomponio ordered the city to pay his legal fees and court costs incurred seeking reinstatement.