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Quick read: A breakdown of the Breidenthal controversy

Here's what you need to know about the controversy swirling around Doug Breidenthal, Jackson County commissioner, who's facing an ethics probe regarding $73,000 in travel expenses and a separate $10,500 account paid by private donors:

• Breidenthal's travel expenses since he became commissioner in 2013 have topped $73,000. Former Commissioners Don Skundrick and John Rachor had $3,500 and $9,500 in expenses, respectively, in their last two years of office.

• Breidenthal set up a separate account, called Friends of Breidenthal, in 2014 with the Association of Oregon Counties. He said it was to fund his campaign for a spot on the board of the Western Interstate Region, an affiliate of the National Association of Counties. Breidenthal raised $10,500 for the account, which included contributions from Indian tribes and trucking, lumber and energy companies — all of whom have requested various actions from the Board of Commissioners.

• Breidenthal obtained a debit card for his Friends of Breidenthal account, which he said is owned and managed by the AOC. AOC spokeswoman Laura Cleland confirmed the AOC manages the account but did not have receipts for Breidenthal's debit card withdrawals. "We didn't maintain control well enough," she said. "That's on us."

• Breidenthal's run for the WIR board seat included a hospitality suite at the Hilton Hotel during the WIR's meeting in Anchorage, Alaska, that cost $3,441. The suite was for 30 people and included seafood platters and a bar tab of $1,000.

• Other expenses paid by the AOC account were $547.90 for airfare to Alaska for Breidenthal’s wife; a $1,000 campaign contribution to Rick Dyer, who was running for commissioner, on Aug. 14, 2014; and a reimbursement to pay travel expenses for Gilbert Riddell, an employee of the AOC, for $821.90 on May 13, 2014. 

• Breidenthal was elected to the WIR board in May 2014. More than a year later, in September 2015, he received a $2,400 donation from Murphy Lumber Co. to the Friends of Breidenthal account.

• The president of the WIR board, Gordon Cruikshank, told the Mail Tribune he paid for his campaign on the board out of his own pocket and does not have a separate account to pay for WIR business-related expenses.

• Breidenthal, who makes $93,309 a year as county commissioner but will see an increase to $99,674 in January, has missed 30 meetings so far this year because of his travel to WIR and AOC meetings. 

• The Oregon Ethics Commission is set to decide soon whether to investigate Breidenthal after Jackson County sent an ethics complaint to the commission in October. See the ethics complaint at http://ow.ly/VlFbf.

• On Dec. 1, Breidenthal was stripped of his chairmanship on the Board of Commissioners by the other two board members, Rick Dyer and Colleen Roberts. See story and videos here

• At the same Dec. 1 meeting, Dyer and Roberts criticized Breidenthal for using his wife's personal email account to send his response to the ethics complaint to Dyer's and Roberts' personal accounts. See story here.

• Jackson County Sheriff Corey Falls sent an email to the Oregon Department of Justice to look into "allegations regarding a County Commissioner in Jackson County." Breidenthal says he went to Falls after a meeting with Jackson County Administrator Danny Jordan, County Counsel Joel Benton and County Auditor Erick Spivak on Oct. 19 in which Breidenthal described Jordan as "hostile" and "insubordinate."