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Complaint triggers inquiry into Adams’ work on Measure 74

Of the Keizertimes

A complaint regarding Keizer Police Chief Marc Adams’ advocacy against a state ballot measure that would allow medical marijuana dispensaries is under investigation by the Oregon Secretary of State’s office.

Adams is accused by Laird Funk of Williams, Ore. of violating an Oregon statute prohibiting public employees “from promoting or opposing candidates, election petitions, measures or political committees, while on the job during working hours,” according to a Sept. 22 letter from Carla Corbin, a compliance specialist for the Secretary of State’s Elections Division.

Funk’s complaint stems from an opinion piece Adams penned that was published in the Sept. 17 edition of the Keizertimes opposing Measure 74, a state ballot measure that would allow medical marijuana dispensaries in the state.

Corbin told the Keizertimes that the penalty for first offense is $75, and is considered civil, i.e. it is not a criminal offense.

“The statute says as a public employee you shall not campaign on the job during work hours, and no one can make you do that,” Corbin said.

Adams has until Oct. 6 to answer Corbin’s questions, including whether it was written in Adams’ official capacity as chief of Keizer Police, whom determined the article’s content and whether “public employee, work time, supplies or equipment” was used “in the production or distribution of the article in question.”

Adams was out of town and had yet to see the complaint when contacted by the Keizertimes.