Press Release Ohio Auditor of State

Conflict of Interest Involving Payments to Trustee-Owned Business Cited During Audit of Hopewell Township in Perry County

For Immediate Release

Thursday, June 27, 2024

COLUMBUS — Auditors identified a conflict of interest during a review of Hopewell Township’s finances, after a trustee approved payments totaling $16,631 for services provided by a business he owned.

The issue was noted in a management letter as part of an audit of the Perry County township’s finances from Jan. 1, 2020, through Dec. 31, 2021. 

The full audit report, released Thursday, is available online via Search Audits (ohioauditor.gov/auditsearch/search.aspx). Copies of the accompanying management letter are available on request from the Auditor of State’s Office.

State law prohibits trustees from having an interest in the profits or benefits of public contracts entered by the boards they serve. 

Auditors determined Hopewell Township made payments totaling $10,754 and $5,877 in 2020 and 2021, respectively, for repairs and maintenance on township vehicles to a business owned by then-Trustee David Ours.

Ours approved the payments and signed the checks to his business from the township.

The Auditor of State’s Office referred the issue to the Ohio Ethics Commission.


The Auditor of State’s Office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,900 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Keith Faber, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies, and promotes transparency in government. 

Public Affairs
Contact: Marc Kovac