Next week the North Carolina State Board of Elections & Ethics enforcement is set to hold a hearing on alleged campaign finance violations by N.C. Sen. Ralph Hise (R-Mitchell).
Though the case has been winding its way toward a hearing for nearly two years, Hise’s campaign last week wrote a letter looking to push it back further. In the letter to board chair Andy Penry, attorney Steven B. Long wrote that Hise’s mother – who was also his campaign treasurer from 2009 until last year – would not be able to attend the hearing due to her cancer treatment and recent hospitalization. Long argues that her testimony will be key to the hearing.
In his reply, Penry said the board will hear the request at its Oct. 17 meeting but that he is “not inclined to delay the entire matter to an unknown date.”
Further, Penry wrote:
“I have directed staff to place your clients’ request for delay on The Board’s agenda for October 17, 2018. The Board will hear the request on that day prior to any merits hearing. As you know, this matter, along with several of the other matters scheduled on October 17, have been pending for quite some time. Scheduling a hearing on this matter has been delayed on several occasions. And, as you know, our statutes contemplate that matters such as this be resolved expeditiously. See N.C. Gen. Stat. 163A – 1440 (7).
To assist you in preparing for the motion and the merits proceeding, please consider the following:
- Provide the Board with evidence, including a verified statement from a treating physician, that Ms. Hise is unable to participate in the proceeding;
- Provide evidence as to when Ms. Hise will reasonably be able to participate;
- Provide evidence that all forms of participation, including written statements, telephonic or web participation, or depositions have been considered and are not possible;
- Provide evidence that your clients will be unfairly prejudiced if Ms. Hise cannot participate;
- Provide evidence that the information anticipated to be provided by Ms. Hise cannot be provided by others or by documentary evidence, including the affidavit previously submitted on August 21, 2018.
You should be prepared to proceed with all portions of your presentation other than the testimony of Ms. Hise, assuming she remains unavailable, on October 17, 2018.”