Jeff Cowan

Elections complaints were dismissed against Keizer Fire Chief Jeff Cowan last week.

The Oregon Secretary of State’s office ruled in Cowan’s favor on two complaints filed by Keizer City Councilor David McKane and local resident Michael Welter. Both sought the Election Division’s opinion as to whether Cowan violated state laws prohibiting public employees from campaigning on work time.

In McKane’s complaint, Deputy Director Brenda Bayes found there was insufficient evidence to show a violation of the law. While campaigning on work time is not legal under state law, that statute does not prohibit simply using public employee email for those purposes.

On the complaint from Welter, Bayes said the measure was not yet certified, so there was no grounds to investigate whether public employee work time was used to promote it.

Keizer Fire District announced the decisions Monday.

“It should not be a surprise to anyone that I advocate for public safety in Keizer,” Cowan said. “I am delighted to be cleared of any wrong doing.”