Governor Requests Recusal of Senator Roger Katz
October 6, 2015
For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531
AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage has requested that Senator Roger Katz recuse himself as co-chair of the Government Oversight Committee (GOC) because statements made by the Senator clearly showed his bias against the Governor prior to an investigation led by the Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability (OPEGA).
Senator Katz’s statements are public and well documented. Sen. Katz has said the Governor is “trying to ruin” Speaker of the House Mark Eves. His statement was published in several newspapers and blogs and reflect likely communication between Chairman Katz and Speaker Eves about the facts of the investigation. In fact, the Senator’s statements are also quoted in the Speaker’s lawsuit against the Governor.
“I request Sen. Katz to step down from the this specific case because he has a clear conflict of interest,” said Governor LePage. “He has already drawn factual conclusions and announced them publicly, and from the beginning this has been nothing but a political witch hunt.”
Meanwhile, the Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability (OPEGA) indicated in its report that Good-Will Hinckley ultimately decided to terminate the Speaker’s employment because of the concerns expressed by the Harold Alfond Foundation Board Chair, not because of the Governor’s objections.
As the co-chair of the Government Oversight Committee, Sen. Katz is charged with reviewing OPEGA’s “fact finding” report. The GOC will hold a public hearing Oct. 15.