Conflict of Interest? Council Members vs. Oil Company 01/07/13
CBS 7 News
January 7, 2013
MIDLAND, TX - Several permits to drill within the city limits are going before Midland City Council at tomorrow's meeting. Several council members may be in business with the company making the request. A source tells us that council members Scott Dufford and Jeff Sparks are involved in a lawsuit with Endeavor Energy Resources on personal business.
The company is requesting to drill within the city limits tomorrow and the question is raised whether or not this is a conflict of interest. We contacted the City and the City Attorney has released the following statement.
"It is not necessary for council members Dufford and Sparks to abstain from tomorrow’s vote in this case, as there is no conflict that we have found regarding the specific permit going before the council tomorrow.”
City officials also tell CBS 7 that if a lawsuit is grounds for a conflict of interest, requiring a council member to abstain from a vote, oil companies could simply file a lawsuit with council members they feel would oppose their request.
We left several messages with Endeavor Energy but our calls were not returned. The requests will go before council at tomorrow morning's meeting.