Nominees for Clark County Ethics Commission approved

Published 4:00 pm Thursday, February 15, 2024

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Meetings often find the Clark County Fiscal Court at the Clark County Courthouse dealing with community concerns. 

However, the meeting that took place at 6:00 p.m. on Monday, February 12th, was an exception. 

The Clark County Ethics Commission met for a special meeting. 

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“Nobody had really thought about it until it came before the fiscal xourt a couple of weeks ago, when [Clark County Executive-Judge Les Yates] had some folks he wanted to appoint,” said Clark County Attorney William Elkins, who serves as legal counsel. 

This is the first meeting of the group since approximately January of 2022, when previous appointees were made by then Clark County Judge-Executive Les Yates. 

Four people who needed to be chosen; Chris Clem, Melissa Fish, Jason Hall, and James Harrison were named members of the commission. 

Regarding its purpose, according to, “Pursuant to the authority granted by KRS Chapter 65, the county hereby establishes a code of ethics to guide the conduct of elected and appointed county offices and employees, including members of the Fiscal Court, Sheriff, County Attorney, County Clerk, Jailer, Coroner, Surveyor, and Constable…It is the purpose of this chapter to provide a method of assuring that standards of ethical conduct for local government officers and employees shall be clear, consistent, and uniform in their application, and to provide local officers and employees with advice and information concerning possible conflicts of interest which might arise in the conduct of their public duties.” 

Because 2024 is an election year, with Winchester City Commissioners, among others, to be voted on this upcoming fall, the presence of an ethics commission is all the more worthwhile. 

At Monday’s meeting, featuring Clem as chairperson and Fish as Secretary, the main agenda item was to nominate and appoint three members to vacancies on the Ethics Commission pursuant to the Clark County Code of Ordinances. 

The three members nominated were Pete Kovalic, Davae Jones, and Theresa Salvatare. 

While Kovalic is a contractor and Jones’ work includes formerly serving in the United States military, Salvatare has done work throughout the community and is the wife of a local pastor. 

“She’s also said that she would be very excited.” said Hall, who put forth the nomination. 

All three were approved unanimously. 

Next, another special called meeting will take place on Tuesday, March 12th, at 6:00 p.m. in the fiscal courtroom to consider proper filing and compliance with financial disclosure requirements.