- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Montgomery County officials announced Wednesday that Chief Administrative Officer Andrew Kleine has resigned after admitting he violated the county’s ethics policy.

County Executive Marc Elrich, who appointed Mr. Kleine to the position in 2018, on Tuesday accepted his resignation, which takes effect Saturday, according to Bethesda Magazine.

Mr. Elrich nominated Budget Director Rich Madaleno to fill the vacancy, beginning Sunday.

Last month, Mr. Kleine admitted violating the county’s ethics policy by using taxpayer dollars to promote his book “City on the Line” and maintaining business relationships with two private companies while in his county position.

Both companies had received county contracts after Mr. Kleine assumed office.

He has agreed to pay a $5,000 fine for the violations.

The county’s ethics commission last year began investigating ethics allegations against Mr. Kleine.

“Chief Administrative Officer Andrew Kleine’s decision to resign is the right thing to do, given the ethics violations found by the Montgomery County Ethics Commission. This change in leadership is an essential step to restoring confidence among county government employees and residents. Our system of representative government depends on the people maintaining the highest trust in their elected officials and government employees,” county council President Sidney Katz said Wednesday.

Mr. Elrich thanked Mr. Kleine for his contributions to the county Wednesday in a statement.

“During his time as CAO, Andrew Kleine led the County Government’s effort to reorganize services ranging from public safety to technology services,” Mr. Elrich said. “He championed a Turn the Curve initiative to empower County employees to rethink and improve the delivery of services to our million-plus residents. Over the past five months, he has played a critical role in our community’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. I thank him for his many contributions and wish him well in future endeavors.”

Mr. Madeleno has served as an elected representative for Montgomery County in the General Assembly, in the state House of Delegates and as a state senator.

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