Yesterday the City Ethics Review Commission convened for the first time in two years in order to review Dora Oaxaca’s complaints against Rep. Brian Kennedy of District 1. Her complaints and Kennedy’s response are posted under agenda item 10. You can view the proceedings on YouTube.
There were six commissioners who reviewed the complaints and, after a marathon session lasting about three hours, they voted 5-1 to dismiss them. Only Mark C. Walker, a local attorney appointed by Rep. Isabel Salcido, felt that the complaints had any merit.
Oaxaca was given ample time to rant against Kennedy, insisting that he had a conflict of interest because of his previous consulting for the non-profit El Paso Sports Commission and his attendance on January 3 at an executive session during which the MPC was discussed.
Yet she could not escape the facts that Kennedy recused himself from the January 3 vote to abandon constructing an arena in Duranguito, did not participate in any related deliberations, and is legally permitted to attend executive sessions, even after a recusal.
Here are some of the highlights from her rant:
- She produced an IRS 990 form, alleging that it proved Kennedy was employed by the Sports Commission longer than he represented; but then it was politely explained to her that the form reported salaries from FY 2021. Oops!
- She claimed that on January 3, Tony Rodriguez, Director of Communications and Events at the El Paso Sports Commission, uttered that Kennedy was presently acting as an attorney for the organization; but Rodriguez appeared as a witness and denied any such statement. Ouch!
- She relentlessly insisted that Kennedy reveal whether he spoke or used “body language” during the January 3 executive session even though (1) there are no deliberations in executive session, and (2) revealing what was said or not said in executive sessions requires a court order.
It is nice to see that Rep. Kennedy has been found innocent of any wrongdoing. He has been under attack since midway through his election campaign, first by Analisa Silverstein, then by Bob Moore, and now by the wife of City Rep. Henry Rivera.
Oaxaca has a chip on her shoulder the size of Mongolia and wasted the time of a committed group of citizen volunteers.
Enjoy your morning.