KAILUA-KONA >> The Hawaii County ethics board has found that Deputy County Clerk Maile David can keep her job while she runs for a County Council seat.
The West Hawaii Today newspaper reports that the board voted Wednesday to send her an advisory opinion stating that her running for office doesn’t violate ethics standards so long as she and the clerk’s office take steps to protect the integrity of the election.
Those measures include her staying away from the Division of Elections, which is under the county clerk’s office. David also is no longer clerking County Council sessions, giving her a lower profile.
She’s running for the District 6 seat being vacated by Councilwoman Brenda Ford. David ran unsuccessfully for council in 2010 and 2012 before becoming deputy clerk.
The ethics board also wants David to ask the state Office of Elections for assurance that her campaign won’t affect the integrity of the election. County Clerk Steward Maeda said he spoke with Chief Elections Officer Scott Nago and agreed there was no conflict.
But Nago told West Hawaii Today that he has yet to offer clearance.
“We’re not going to give them our blessing, if that’s what they’re asking for,” Nago said.
In a separate hearing, the County Council mulled cutting David’s salary while she runs, because her campaign will curtail her duties. The council unanimously killed a budget amendment that would have cut her $89,796 salary in half and would have distributed the balance to council aides.