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Bob Good Denies ‘Any Knowledge’ of Past Investments

Bob Good speaks on a stage
Bob Good speaks at an event in Greene County on Saturday, flanked by conservative talk show host John Fredricks. (Crixell Matthews/VPM News)

Republican Congressional hopeful Bob Good said he lacks “any knowledge” of which stocks he held while he took key votes on the Campbell Board of Supervisors. In an interview on Saturday, he also downplayed questions over why his assets weren’t reported to Virginia’s ethics board from 2016 through 2019, as required by state law.

“I don’t think this question is of any concern to the voters of the fifth district,” Good said. “But that said, every financial disclosure that I have filed was filed with the intent and understanding to file it accurately and completely.” 

The former financial services manager, who unseated Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-5th) in a nominating convention in June, is locked in a tight Congressional race with Democrat Cameron Webb.

Good’s previous political experience came in his tenure on the Board of Supervisors in Campbell County, where he served as Liberty University’s athletic director. Good took several votes as a supervisor that involved two healthcare companies that are listed in his most recent federal financial disclosures. At least one of those votes occurred during the reporting period for his most recent filing, which covered January 2018 through November 2019.

Good, who managed 10 Citigroup Bank branches through 2005, said he didn’t directly manage his retirement account.

“I don't direct the specific stock holdings in any retirement portfolios that I have -- and everything that's been disclosed there is retirement portfolios, not direct individual stocks -- and frankly, don't have any knowledge of individual stocks that I may or may not have owned going back to my time on the board of supervisors,” Good said.

Stock brokers and financial consultants are required to keep records of transactions for six years. Those rules apply to Merrill Lynch, which Good listed as the holder for an IRA fund containing between $1,001 and $15,000 worth of investments in Abbott Laboratories and McKesson Corporation.

In June of 2016, Good voted with the rest of the board in favor of negotiating a contract with McKesson to handle the county’s ambulance billing and collection. The next month, he voted with all but one member of the board in granting a $567,000 incentive package to Abbott Laboratories to expand a facility in Altavista. In November 2018, Good and the other members of the Board voted to allow McKesson to place liens on the state tax returns and real estate of patients with unpaid ambulance bills.

Webb’s campaign manager, Ben Young, disputed Good’s sentiment that voters weren’t interested in the records. 

“Mr. Good’s reported conflicts of interest with two big pharma companies who had business before the Board of Supervisors during his tenure, and his failure to disclose those interests, is certainly relevant for voters,” Young said in a statement. “It’s time he stop dismissing these concerns and start actually answering for them.”

State code requires local officials to recuse themselves from votes if they have a “personal interest” in the transaction. Good would have had to earn at least $5,000 a year from the stocks for them to be classified as personal interests under state law. The law also creates a broad exemption for a transaction that “affects the public generally.”

Good did not list any assets on his Virginia Statement of Economic Interest forms from 2016 through 2019. His federal financial statement, by contrast, shows he owned between $257,000 and $1.8 million in retirement accounts. A portion of those assets may be worth less than $5,000, in which case they did not have to be reported on state ethics filings.

Ben Paviour covers courts and criminal justice for VPM News with a focus on accountability.
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