Watertown ethics board meets to discuss complaint against city council member

Published: Sep. 15, 2023 at 5:28 PM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - Watertown’s board of ethics met Friday to discuss Mayor Jeff Smith’s ethics complaint regarding City Council Member Cliff Olney.

Earlier this week, Smith accused Olney of revealing information from the council’s September 5 executive session to the public and media. On Friday, the board entered an executive session to get legal advice from interim City Attorney Todd Bullard.

Then they deliberated without Bullard for nearly 2 hours. Olney had previously asked Bullard to recuse himself from the meeting due to past disagreements between the two men.

The ethics board will reconvene on Monday when Bullard will share an assessment of the board’s findings.

“We have requested counsel draft an opinion to confirm our findings and recommendations. In that vein, I would like a motion to adjourn this meeting until Monday, September 18 at 1:30 here in council chambers,” said Watertown Board of Ethics Chairman Stephen Jennings.

The board of ethics would not share its findings at this time.