The West Virginia Ethics Commission will hire a new attorney to represent it during an upcoming ethics case against Beckley Mayor Emmett Pugh.

The four-day hearing, which alleges Pugh violated the state Ethics Act, was scheduled to get underway Monday in Beckley but it’s been postponed.

West Virginia Ethics Commission Executive Director Theresa Kirk says attorney Martin J. Wright, who was handling the case for the commission, has taken a job with new state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey. The commission will hire a new attorney and then a status conference will be held to set a new hearing date.

Mayor Pugh was charged by the ethics commission last March after a review board found probable cause that he violated the Ethics Act nine times.

The charges center on a relationship Pugh had with the Burning Rock Outdoor Adventure Park. He allegedly used city services in exchange for personal gain.

Pugh, who was first elected mayor in Beckley in 1988, denies the charges.


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