- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 21, 2015

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The head of the Rhode Island State Police can keep the cuff links, plaque and desk clock he received as gifts from his alma mater.

Col. Steven O’Donnell received the gifts with a distinguished alumni award from the University of New Haven in April. He graduated from the Connecticut school in 1982.

Public officials in Rhode Island can’t accept gifts worth more than $25 from someone with a financial interest in the official’s decisions.

He says out of an abundance of caution he asked the Rhode Island Ethics Commission for its opinion. The commission found Tuesday that O’Donnell isn’t prohibited by the ethics code from keeping the gifts.

The commission’s opinion says the university doesn’t have an interest in any decision O’Donnell is authorized to make.

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