Republican Fort Wayne mayoral nominee Matt Kelty correctly reported $158,000 in loans to his campaign, according to a party-line vote by the Allen County Election Board. The board voted 2-1 on a motion saying Kelty did not violate campaign finance laws.
Allen County Clerk of Courts Therese Brown and member David Wright, both Republicans, voted to clear Kelty. Andy Downs, Democratic member, said he believed Kelty did violate the law and the matter should be investigated by a prosecutor.
According to campaign finance forms, Kelty reported giving himself loans of $140,000 and $8,000 on Dec. 27. He also reported lending himself another $8,000
in April and delinquently reported a $2,000 loan in late May.After winning the primary election, Kelty revealed the source of the loans were personal loans made to him from campaign staffers.
Fred Rost, a campaign advisor and president of Allen County Right to Life, loaned Kelty $150,000. Kelty also received a $10,000 loan from Glenna and Steve Jehl. Glenna Jehl is Kelty’s campaign manager.
James Bopp, Kelty’s attorney, argued Kelty was correct in how he reported the loans. He said state law does not require disclosing the source of personal loans.
This is a very sad day for the Allen Co. Republicans. Today's decision forfeits any right they have to reclaim the mayor's office in Fort Wayne. If this is the kind of corrupt leadership they have to offer for the people of Fort Wayne, then they don't deserve to run the city for the next four years.