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ELC87-13

TO:    Evelyn R. Lotz, Director, Wood County Board of Elections:

You have requested an opinion on the following questions:

ay campaign funds of a public officeholder be used to pay for:

1.    Gifts for employees of the officeholder, such as for birthdays, weddings and retirements;
2.    Flowers given due to the illness or death of an employee or employee's family member;
3.    Christmas cards sent to the officeholder's staff and campaign contributors;
4.    Christmas parties for the officeholder's staff; and
5.    The officeholder' s inauguration party?

 SYLLABUS : Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code section 3517.13(0), campaign funds may be used to pay for gifts for employees of an officeholder (i.e. birthdays, weddings, and retirements), flowers given due to the illness or death of an employee or employee's family member, Christmas cards sent to an officeholder's staff and campaign contributors, Christmas parties for an officeholder's staff, and an officeholder' s inauguration party, so long as such expenditures would not be made by a candidate or officeholder but-for the fact that he/she is a candidate or officeholder and such expenditures are reasonable in cost and form and relevant to the campaign or duties of the officeholder.