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Taxpayers footed the bill for Bentley’s investigation

The investigation into former governor Robert Bentley came with a hefty price tag for Alabama taxpayers.
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — The investigation into former governor Robert Bentley came with a hefty price tag for Alabama taxpayers. According to the Alabama State Auditor’s Office, an estimated $1 million dollars was spent during the investigation.

Lawmakers are calling for Bentley to pay the money back.

State Auditor Jim Zeigler says the Ethics Commission’s investigation lasted more than a year. They interviewed 33 witnesses and processed 45 thousand pages of documented evidence.

“The taxpayers paid for both sides,” said Zeigler. “We paid to prosecute Robert Bentley and we paid to defend Robert Bentley – something is wrong with this picture.”

Zeigler says they are looking into new legislation where the state doesn’t have to pay for the defense cost if a public official is being criminally investigated or being investigated on impeachment.