FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE by Americans for John Mitchel 2010, www.reformcongress.com

What are they hiding at Nextedge?

Springfield, Ohio, April 26, 2010: On returning from a Veteran’s Forum in Columbus, Congressional Candidate John Mitchel stopped at Nextedge Development Corporation in Springfield to follow up on an investigation into allegations that Mrs. Austria used Nextedge as a platform to raise money for her husband’s congressional campaign.  One day after Mrs. Austria left her job as District Director for Dave Hobson, Steve Austria’s predecessor, she took a job with Nextedge.  Mitchel claims that it was not illegal for Mrs. Austria to work for Nextedge, but it violates federal election statutes if Mrs. Austria used Nextedge resources for political purposes.  Furthermore, Mitchel claims that Mr. Austria concealed his spouse’s employment with Nextedge on his 2009 federal Financial Disclosure Statement, which also would be a violation of federal campaign finance law.

Mitchel commented, “There are a lot of unanswered questions related to Mrs. Austria’s transition from Dave Hobson’s District Director to her employment with Nextedge, not the least of which deals with her last two months in a $100,000-a-year tax-payer funded job with Mr. Hobson. In late October 2007, Steve Austria announced his candidacy simultaneously with Dave Hobson’s retirement announcement, but Mrs. Austria stayed in that job until December 31st.  During that two month period the Austria campaign committee raised over $220,000 ( Austria’s Campaign Contributions for the period of Oct. through Dec. 2007 – Original source: www.fec.gov ). If Mrs. Austria made even one phone call from Dave Hobson’s Springfield office to those contributors that resulted in a campaign contribution, she broke the law.  It’s important that the Federal Election Commission subpoena those phone records.  Furthermore, many of the contributors on this list had direct ties to Nextedge such as John Landess (Turner Foundation), Lawrence Janning (SAIC, Nextedge tenant), Ray Hagerman (Turner Foundation), and Janet and Willard Pardue and numerous other Qbase associates (Qbase is also a Nextedge tenant).  Moving forward, Mrs. Austria worked for Nextedge as Director of Sales and Marketing from January 1, 2008 until at least October, coinciding directly with the 2008 election cycle.  During that period, to my knowledge no tenants were added by Nextedge, however the Austria campaign raised nearly $1 million, which begs the question, “Was Mrs. Austria marketing for Nextedge or dialing for campaign cash?”  My visit to Nextedge on Monday, April 26th raised even more questions. Apparently Avetec, a Nextedge tenant, is leasing space to Nextedge, which seems strange in and of itself, but when I asked the name of the two Nextedge employees, one Avetec employee said he didn’t know, and the other said he didn’t want to get involved.  Since Nextedge was 60-70% funded by tax payer dollars, we believe it’s well past the time Mr.  Austria brings into the bright sunshine Mrs. Austria’s activities while she worked at Nextedge from January 1st, 2008 until well into the fall.”

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