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Hood: Investigation gives reason to believe Brandon Rep. McGee violated ethics laws

Mississippi Ethics Commission executive director Tom Hood just confirmed to Magnolia Marketplace that an investigation by that agency has turned up evidence that Rep. Kevin McGee, R-Brandon, violated the rules governing lawmakers having a financial interest in state vendors.

Hood said a hearing on the matter that was scheduled for Friday morning had been continued.

Hood said the Ethics Commission received an anonymous tip a few months ago that McGee’s financial interest in Pearl-based Service Printers Inc. violated the aforementioned rules about lawmakers being involved in entities that did business with state agencies. On the Service Printers website, McGee is listed as the company’s president.

After the investigation turned up probable cause to support charging McGee with a violation, Hood said, the Commission filed a formal complaint, which would have been aired Friday had the hearing been continued. What will most likely happen is that one of McGee’s attorneys will appear before the Commission during its regularly scheduled meeting to make a settlement offer, a few of which have already been rejected, Hood said.

Rep. Jeff Smith, R-Columbus, and Rep. Mark Baker, R-Brandon, are representing McGee. Baker wouldn’t say much when I reached him on his cell phone. McGee, who is unopposed in his re-election bid, did not immediately return a message left on his cell phone. Smith’s cell phone rang unanswered.

I’ll update this throughout the day.

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