Tough job

Phil Alfano of Modesto says he wants to clear his sister’s name. His sister was Kathy Augustine, the Nevada state controller who was murdered on July 11, 2006.

Alfano told the Las Vegas Sun he filed a federal Freedom of Information request for records of a federal investigation into her conduct, which was called off after Augustine’s murder. The probe was being conducted by the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, a little-known agency that deals with veteran reemployment rights, protection of whistleblowers, Hatch Act allegations and a few other matters.

Clearing Augustine’s name could be a difficult task. Before her murder, she admitted violating state ethics laws and accepted a $15,000 fine by the Nevada Ethics Commission, she was impeached by the state Assembly and convicted by the Senate (no penalty was imposed) after a trial in which state employees testified that they were forced to work on her campaign, and she was the subject of the federal inquiry.