Mitchell stays on message on own investigation, focuses on trans - CBS46 News

Mitchell stays on message on own investigation, focuses on transparency in bid for mayor

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ATLANTA (CBS46) -

Atlanta City Council President Ceasar Mitchell spoke publicly for the first time about the ongoing bribery and corruption scandal at city hall, stopping short of any criticism of the handling so far.

"We find ourselves, in our city, at a cross roads" Mitchell said. "The unfortunate events of the past few weeks have shaken the confidence of city hall and risked tearing further at the fabric of trust"

Friday's press conference however, focused on the ongoing investigation in the building he hopes to head soon. Two contractors have already pleaded guilty to bribing a yet unnamed city employee for lucrative bids — the procurement office, just this week was raided and Adam Smith, who works in that office was dismissed.

Mitchell outright denied he had any involvement in the growing scandal.

"I have had no role and I'm certainly not aware of who may have a role," Mitchell said.

Mitchell has announced that he is running to succeed Mayor Kasim Reed in the upcoming election. He is also embroiled in an investigation of his own after the FBI said they were looking into some discrepancies in his campaign finances.

Cloud of investigation hangs over campaign

Georgia's Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission has been investigating Mitchell for months for what his office downplayed as a computer glitch.

In a letter obtained by CBS46, a complaint alleges roughly $300,000 raised by Mitchell's campaign were not properly disclosed. 

Mitchell didn't say much about the allegations, pointing to the open investigation, but said none of the money raised has been spent outside of what the law allows. He also said he "respects the process."

"I will say it hasn't been used, I respect and embrace their role in asking questions," he said.

Bringing the discussion back around to his own campaign platform, Mitchell said, should he become mayor he hopes to make it easier for the public to access records helping to move the process away from Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.

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