Controversy continues in Cumberland

By: Katie Roach Email
By: Katie Roach Email

An eastern Kentucky mayor has filed an ethics complaint against a council member.

The mayor of Cumberland said council member Charles Raleigh violated an ethics ordinance by knowingly giving the media false information which could be grounds for removal.

The controversy has been stirring for several weeks in the City of Cumberland.

Mayor Carl Hatfield recently fired the police chief, and now Hatfield has filed an ethics complaint against the police chief's brother and Cumberland Council Member Charles Raleigh.

In the complaint, Hatfield alleges that Raleigh gave the news media false information.

"99 percent of what he put in the paper is false, and I have concrete evidence to substantiate that it is false," said Hatfield.

But Raleigh says he has evidence to back up all of the allegations. He says he is just trying to serve his city.

"I want the people to be informed. They have a right to be informed and the way he has been conducting meetings and avoiding meetings, it's taking away the public's right to have a say," said Raleigh.

In a response from the Cumberland Valley Regional Board of Ethics, a staff level review says that Raleigh did not violate the cited provision.

If the ethics committee would have agreed with Hatfield, local ordinances to remove Raleigh could have been taken.

But, both Mayor Hatfield and Raleigh say they have the city's interest at heart and this controversy is taking a toll.

"It has a terrible effect of our ability to run the city as we should be doing," said Hatfield.

"The city can't take three more years of this man there is just no way. He has got to work with us instead of against us," said Raleigh.

Other council members expressed their desire for all officials to work together and to put personal agendas aside.

Hatfield has until February 6th to file an appeal.

Their last council meeting on January 10th was postponed due to all the controversy. It has been rescheduled with a special called meeting for tomorrow at 5:00 p.m.

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