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Updated Feb 21, 2012 - 6:54 pm

Tempe mayoral candidate calls out coucilman

Tempe business owner and candidate for mayor Michael Monti wants opposing candidate, Tempe Councilman Mark Mitchell, to disclose his expenses for taxpayer-funded travel.

A new policy was recently proposed at a news conference held by Monti along with Mayor Hugh Hallman and Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. Their proposal stated that officials would be forced to report their taxpayer funded travel expenses.

A gift ban for the city of Tempe was also proposed.

The ban would require officials to report gifts of more than $15 and prevent elected officials from accepting gifts worth more than $50.

"I hope these rules will not only keep elected officials honest, but will also discourage those seeking perks and privileges from running for office in the future in our city," Monti said in a press release.

Monti said Mitchell has received meals, trips and gifts throughout his nearly 12 years on the council, but none of them have been disclosed.

"If Mitchell does not release these, it begs the question what he is hiding in those travel records and what gifts he has received over the years he has failed to report," Monti said in the release.

Bill Scheel, a spokesman for Mitchell, said that the councilman files a disclosure report every January.

"In fact, [Mitchell's] travel is public record and anyone can go to City Hall and see those records," said Scheel.

Scheel went on to say that Monti could be focusing on things that are more important to the city.

"It's unfortunate that Mr. Monti is drawing up false accusations instead of the issues that should concern Tempe residents," he said.


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