Former City Rep. Claudia Lizette Rodriguez has been under fire for using her City gas card to purchase 1,459 gallons of gas in 2022 totaling $5,294. She purchased both regular and supreme unleaded, and as far away as Van Horn and Carlsbad.
On August 28, District 6 resident Tom Laign filed an ethics complaint against Rodriguez, who told the press “I did nothing wrong and will not be participating in this kangaroo court process.”
On September 18, outside counsel Frank Garza confirmed the City Ethics Commission has jurisdiction over the matter, and one day later Rodriguez reversed her stance, issuing a press release stating “I plan to vigorously defend myself, my reputation and the actions I took while in office.”
Rodriguez had 14 days to submit a response, until October 2, but that deadline passed three days ago.
So much for her vigorous defense!
On October 3, Garza wrote to Laign: “Ms. Rodriguez did not file a response. We will move forward with scheduling the hearing. As soon as the Commission has a quorum, I will notify you of the date and time of the hearing.”
Soon Rodriguez will be asked to appear before the “Kangaroo Court” to explain her conduct and answer to the charges.
Will she subpoenaed by the City and compelled to appear?
Nosotros no sabemos.
Claudia Lizette Rodriguez may have been voted out of office in December but she is still subject to our laws.
We just learned that Phillip’s Laign’s August 28 complaint against her is going before the Ethics Review Commission, since the City’s outside counsel has determined that his complaint lies within their purview.
When she first learned about the complaint last month, she responded by declaring “I did nothing wrong and will not be participating in this kangaroo court process.”
But today she changed her tune, stating “I plan to vigorously defend myself, my reputation and the actions I took while in office.”
It will be interesting to watch her explain how she consumed 1,459 gallons of City fuel in a single year (both regular and supreme unleaded) and why she purchased fuel in Pecos, Fort Stockton, Van Horn, and across state lines, in Carlsbad, New Mexico.
SHE DID IT FOR DURANGUITO!
On June 23, Andrew Polk of Talk El Paso, citing the fuel card audit by Chief Internal Auditor Edmundo Calderon, asked Rodriguez why she purchased City gas so far out of town.
She responded (starting at the 33:00 mark): “I have no idea who Edmundo is […]. I know that I was traveling to go look at historical places like the Stockyards in Fort Worth. I was looking at the Toyota Music Factory [in Irving, Texas]. I was going to Marfa. I was going to ‘Old Town’ in Las Cruces. I was doing a lot of this travel for research that I was doing for the Duranguito project.”
So, you see, she did it for Duranguito!
Wait. Wasn’t she in favor of mass demolition in the barrio so that the City could build it’s arena there?
Did she file expense reports for this “official” travel?
Does she know that the Stockyards are in Fort Worth and not in Fort Stockton?
Rodriguez has 13 more days to respond and then a hearing date will be set.
Bring popcorn and a six-pack.
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