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Controversy surrounding Lansing mayor’s leadership fund continues, outside investigation put on pause

Posted at 11:57 AM, Aug 25, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-25 11:57:47-04

LANSING, Mich. — Community activist and resident Erica Lynn said she doesn’t understand why an ethics complaint she brought forward about Mayor Andy Schor’s leadership fund in July is back to square one.

“I sent the potential complaint to the City Council, and City Council then referred it to the ethics board,” Lynn said.

You may remember, City Attorney Jim Smiertka responded to council saying Schor did nothing wrong by creating the leadership fund.

Council then unanimously voted to have a third party come in to review the complaint. But on Monday, Smiertka told council that cannot happen because the complaint wasn’t signed, which means it wasn’t officially filed.

“That was the first time council had heard about that, so why didn’t somebody tell us that,” said Councilwoman Patricia Spitzley.

Spitzley said the communication between the city attorney could’ve been a lot better.

“He could’ve said this complaint wasn’t properly submitted from the beginning or he could’ve said when we submitted it to the ethics board, 'hey this needs to be signed,'” Spitzley said.

We talked to Smiertka who said he was just trying to follow city rules. On Monday, City Council signed off on the complaint, and Lynn says she plans to resubmit, but it will have to go through the process all over again.

“City Council will give it to the clerk, the clerk will give it to the ethics board and the process will go on,” Smiertka said.

While the process has to start over, Lynn said she’s willing to do it because accountability is needed in Lansing.

“At this moment, it's up to a citizen to hold a very high-level elected official accountable for doing wrong,” she said.

We reached out to Schor to get his response to this, and his team stated “as far as we know, there is no investigation. No complaint has been filed. So there’s nothing there.”

Tianna Jenkins

12:23 PM, Jan 12, 2021

Your Neighborhood Reporter

Tianna Jenkins

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