COLUMBUS — A top aide to Ohio's lieutenant governor has resigned after irregularities were found in her timesheets, a spokesman for the office said Friday.
Laura Johnson, chief of staff to Republican Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor, stepped down Thursday at Taylor's request, said Taylor's spokesman Chris Brock. Johnson's administrative assistant also resigned Wednesday.
Records indicate their working hours and parking records do not match, according to Taylor's office. There were days when both women reported work hours either before entering or after leaving the garage.
Taylor's office became aware of Johnson's timesheet irregularities several weeks ago while responding to a public records request made in April by the Democratic-leaning blog Plunderbund, Brock said. The blog asked for payroll records, timesheets and parking logs for Johnson and the assistant.
The matter has been referred to the Ohio inspector general and State Highway Patrol to review. In a memo to those agencies, Taylor's office said the hours the women's cars were recorded as being in the office's parking garage was “significantly less” than the hours they said they had worked in the four-month time period.
Johnson did not immediately respond to messages sent to her Facebook page. A phone number for her was not immediately available.
Johnson had been given some flexibility to work from home when needed after she had a baby in 2011, Brock said.
Taylor said in a written statement Friday that she was disappointed by the discovery of the irregularities.
“As a working mom, I know it's hard to juggle both family and a job so I've tried to be supportive of my own staff as they juggle those demands,” Taylor said. “Unfortunately, the flexibility I've tried to show the chief of staff of my personal office hasn't been appropriately respected and the workings of the office have suffered.”
Taylor, a former state lawmaker from suburban Akron, has served as lieutenant governor since 2011. She and Gov. John Kasich are running for re-election this fall.