Opinion From the School of Government Concerning Conflict of Interest Question (1)
The above ruling from the UNC School of Government is right on Zack Matheny and completely wrong on Robbie Perkins.
Let's take a closer look at Greensboro City Council Member Robbie Perkins
"Council member Robbie Perkins is President and 50% part owner of Piedmont Triad Commercial Properties, Inc. Piedmont Triad Commercial Properties, Inc. has contracted with Henry Carrison. Mr. Carrison is a former employee of D.H. Griffin Companies and is currently an independent contractor for Mr. Perkins. Mr. Carrison performs property sales, leasing and management services for Piedmont Triad Commercial Properties, Inc. Mr. Carrison receives a commission for performing these services. Mr. Carrison performs these services for D.H. Griffin Companies among others. Piedmont Triad Commercial Properties, Inc. receives the remainder of the payments for work performed by Mr. Carrison.
In 2010, the total payments received by Piedmont Triad Commercial Properties, Inc. were less than $400.Neither Council member Perkins, his spouse, nor Piedmont Triad Commercial Properties, Inc. is an investor or does business with Gate City Waste Services, MRR Southern, LLC. There are currently multiple signs for D.H. Griffin properties listed by Piedmont Triad. Carrison anticipates an ongoing relationship with D. H. Griffin. Mr. Perkins when asked states that any financial interest that may exist is neither a detrimental or persuasive one."
From the above facts provided from the city attorney Mr. Perkins when asked states that any financial interest that may exist is neither a detrimental or persuasive one. To me and plenty of others this statement is proof that there is a financial interest and it doesn't matter if it is $400 or $1 it is still a financial interest. We also see that only looked at last year 2010 because i am sure there is plenty of other financial transactions in the past the need to be brought to the forefront. Then we see that Henry Carrison worked for DH Griffin, oh how convenient.
This is a complete conflict of interest and the City Attorney needs to overrule the school of government because as we have seen in past in regards to Greensboro politics , there was the infamous plane trip to Washington D.C that got cancelled. Our local developer wanted to fly the mayor and chairman of county commissioners on a plane ride to the nations capital. Then city attorney Terry Wood got a ruling from Fleming Bell at UNC School of Government and completely did not see the same facts in the case and decided it was a conflict and the local elected officials did not fly to D.C.
Here is a link to that post from July 4, 2009 titled "Developer Roy Carroll's Plane will sit on tarmac while mayor and chairman ponder ethical standards" CLICKHERE
News and Record article: "Perkins can vote Matheny should abstain" CLICKHERE