FRANKFORT — A former highway official violated the state ethics code by using his position to obtain pit and parking passes for three NASCAR races, according to a state ethics panel.
The Executive Branch Ethics Commission has found Chuck Geveden Jr., former head of Kentucky's Office of Highway Safety, in violation of the state ethics code.
The panel said Tuesday that Geveden has admitted he was in violation and agreed to pay a $4,000 civil penalty, receive a public reprimand and waive any right to appeal.
Geveden was not immediately available for comment.
The ethics panel said its finding was based on allegations that Geveden used his position to obtain pit and parking passes for himself and others to three NASCAR races at Bristol Motor Speedway in 2010.
Geveden solicited the passes through an official of the Kentucky Speedway, which does business with the state's highway safety office, the commission said.
The panel also said Geveden let the state pick up the tab for lodging on a personal trip to attend a NASCAR race last year.
On March 20, 2010, the panel said, Geveden and three personal guests stayed in a two-bedroom cottage at Pine Mountain State Park on the night before the race in Bristol.
"The next morning, prior to traveling on to Bristol for the NASCAR race, Geveden did stop at the Cumberland Gap Tunnel Operations Center for a brief prearranged official visit," the commission said.
"However, at the time Geveden reserved the cottage at Pine Mountain State Resort Park, there was no apparent business purpose for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet to pay for the lodging and, further, Geveden did not report any work time for March 20, 2010, through March 21, 2010."
Geveden resigned from his state job last November. He was reprimanded in August by Transportation Secretary Mike Hancock for filing a false time sheet.