Hearing for former Rendell aid in “Bonusgate”

    A District Judge has ordered a former member of the Rendell Administration to stand trial for allegedly doing campaign work on state time. The ruling came after Stephen Stetler’s preliminary hearing in Dauphin County.

    A one-time York County Representative, Stetler ran the House Democratic Campaign Committee before working as Governor Rendell’s Revenue Secretary.

    He’s facing six counts of theft, conspiracy and conflict of interest for allegedly ordering legislative employees to raise money, conduct opposition research and do other campaign work, while on the clock at their publicly-funded jobs.

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    Early witnesses at the hearings testified about making fund-raising calls from the state Capitol, using legislative staffers to do background checks on Republican opponents, and coming in early and staying late in order to rack up “comp time,” so they could go campaign for Democrats.

    Stetler is one of six current or former lawmakers to face charges in the ongoing legislative corruption probe. Two have gone to trial already. One was found “not guilty.” The other – former House Democratic Whip Mike Veon – has been sentenced to up to 14 years in prison.

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