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Kooyenga can accept help on theft settlement reimbursement

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin law allows Republican state Rep. Dale Kooyenga to ask family and friends to help him reimburse the state for a $30,000 theft settlement.

Donald Johnson filed a lawsuit last year accusing Kooyenga of stealing an anti-Republican sign Johnson placed in a state Capitol foyer. State attorneys this month agreed to pay $30,000 to settle the lawsuit.

Kooyenga said Wednesday that he plans to fully reimburse taxpayers “with the assistance of family and friends.”

State law prohibits Kooyenga from soliciting money from lobbyists but he can solicit from others as long as whatever he’s soliciting isn’t seen as a reward for legislative action or inaction.

Kooyenga didn’t immediately return messages Thursday. An aide in his Capitol office said he had left the state for a week-long U.S. Army Reserve assignment.

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