Panel objects to budget review from city attorney

HONOLULU (AP) - The director of the Honolulu Ethics Commission says the municipal attorney is infringing on the commission's turf by taking a hard look at how it plans to increase its budget.

Chuck Totto says Corporation Counsel Donna Leong is undercutting the authority of the quasi-independent group that enforces ethics laws for city employees.

Leong says Totto is wrong.

She says the commission's budget is no different than any other agency budget and it's subject to review.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports the administration has opposed the commission's proposed budget increase, which includes money for another staff attorney to handle a growing caseload.

Leong says many agencies are experiencing heavy workloads with new added responsibilities and with reduced personnel.

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