Sunday, February 03, 2013

Encore for Furnituregate Star?

Former Assistant City Manager Elizabeth Grindstaff played a major role in the unauthorized purchase of over $100,000 in furniture for the Water Department.

City Councilwoman Charlotte Farmer nominated Grindstaff to serve on the City's Airport Advisory Board for a term ending October 2016.  Do citizens want someone deeply involved in an illegal purchase, one which ruined Daniel Valenzuela's debut as City Manager, to serve on an important public board? 

Grindstaff misrepresented her role in the Furniture Fiasco in that very meeting. I chronicled her statement to Council (which can be verified by video recording):

The furniture budget Council approved for the project was over $200,000.   At some time "they" decided to change the furniture in their suite.  At no time did Mr. Wilde and I have a discussion over new furniture for the Water Department.  Another city employee worked with Will on this.
City e-mails tell a different story.  New furniture for the Water Department arose in early March.  Interim City Manager Michael Dane and Grindstaff chose not to present this item to Council in March.

Grindstaff cheered the order in May in an e-mail discussion with Water Chief Will Wilde.

The public got a series of "they's" from Grindstaff and Will Wilde.  Neither made clear who "they" were.  As there has been no release of the internal investigation, one can only go off the e-mail record obtained by the Standard Times

Charlotte Farmer's nomination of Elizabeth Grindstaff is troubling.  Surely another representative from Texas Pacifico can be found to serve, one who didn't undermine public trust with her actions..

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