By Julie Carr SmythAP Statehouse Correspondent


COLUMBUS (AP) — The chief of staff to Ohio Senate majority Republicans says he’s stepping down but the move is unrelated to allegations of inappropriate conduct roiling the chamber.

Jason Mauk is a seven-year Senate veteran. He tells The Associated Press his last day will be Dec. 1.

GOP state Sen. Clifford Hite resigned last month after a female state employee complained Hite had engaged in inappropriate conversations and physical contact with her over a two-month period. Senate Democrats’ chief of staff, Michael Premo, resigned last week over undisclosed inappropriate behavior.

Mauk says Senate President Larry Obhof has known of his interest to pursue new career opportunities for nearly a year. Mauk says Obhof asked him to stay to finalize the state budget, which took longer than usual this session.