The House Ethics Committee this morning heard testimony from several witnesses as it continues its investigation into Governor Nikki Haley. Specifically, the committee is listening to accusations that Haley illegally lobbied while she was a still member of the Legislature.
Part of the allegation filed by Republican activist John Rainey focuses on Haley’s work as a fundraiser for the Lexington Medical Center Foundation.
AUDIO: House attorney Ben Mustian said that work may be considered unethical under state law.
AUDIO: However, Haley’s attorney Butch Bowers said Rainey’s accusations were just that– accusations.
The committee, for the first half of the day, also focused on Haley’s consultant work with the engineering group Wilbur Smith Associates. The vice president of that company, Robert Ferrell, told the committee under oath that he hired then-representative Haley because of her connections, but not to lobby.
AUDIO: Ferrell on hiring Haley
However, under questioning by Columbia Republican legislator Joan Brady, Ferrell admitted that Haley did not bring in any new work for the company.
AUDIO: Brady questions Ferrell
Haley’s work there is under scrutiny because Wilbur Smith was involved in construction of a new State Farmers Market at the time. Ferrell said he never talked with Haley about that project.
Questioning of subpoenaed witnesses continues this afternoon and can be followed online via ETV.