“In this instance, we believe there’s a prima facie case that Mr. Alcantar met (via telephone) with members of the Plan Commission in number more thana quorum to discuss public business in private,
the letter reads
. “We believethis may constitute a criminal violation of the Open Meetings Act.”
The letter asks Mayor Rawlings to join the group in requesting a fullinvestigation by the District Attorney’s office of the circumstancessurrounding the January 10
“As a result of our concerns, an official complaint, enclosed, has been filedwith the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office. We want this matter fully investigated by an objective and independent third party. We ask that you join us in that call for a full investigation by the District Attorney.”
Members of the groups said that while they don’t know for certain if illegalactivity took place, the allegations fit the profile of a City Hall that’s twistingthe machinery of municipal government in order to get the result it wants.
“There’s no question that someone at City Hall has been tightening thescrews on the City Plan Commission,”
said Jim Schermbeck of the local cleanair group Downwinders at Risk.
“Whether that degenerated into the criminalbehavior outlined in our complaint is for the District Attorney to discover.”
Besides Schermbeck, Zac Trahan of the Texas Campaign for theEnvironment, Raymond Crawford of Dallas Residents for Responsible Drilling,and Marc McCord of FracDallas all signed the complaint and the letter. Theyalso all criticized the lack of transparency that has marked Dallas City Hall’spush for gas permits.
“Ever since the original gas leases were signed in Dallas, City officialshave retreated behind closed doors,”
said Molly Rooke of the Dallas SierraClub.
“This is just another example of a
back-room deal’ that affectsevery Dallas resident, but that no one sees until after the fact.”
Others in the group cited recent legal backflips by the City in what to calla proposed gas processing and compressor station facility just a fewhundred feet from the new Elm Fork Soccer Complex. Last year it was aprocessing plant that would have required a special zoning district. Thisyear, city attorneys say it’s only routine drilling equipment.
“The City is desperately pulling out all the stops in trying to get Trinity East’s gas permits approved,”
said Zac Trahan of Texas Campaign for the