DA asked to review CM Jones ethics allegations; Review panel suspends work
Last week, Marc Campos noted that Councilmember Jones had seemingly begun to fight back, giving the city attorney grief in Council proceedings and making it clear she could stack chambers with supporters and activists.
The Harris County District Attorney has been asked to review for possible criminal prosecution allegations that Councilwoman Jolanda Jones used city resources to support her private law practice, Mayor Annise Parker confirmed this afternoon.
Shortly after the Office of Inspector General released a report last month summarizing its findings that Jones had used a city phone number, fax machine and employee time to run her practice, Parker said she did not believe Jones should face criminal prosecution. The alleged crimes are misdemeanors.
Since then, Parker has chaired numerous meetings of a three-member review panel advised by City Attorney David Feldman to determine whether Jones should face the judgment of her fellow council members. If the panel sends the matter to council, Jones could face penalties ranging from reprimand to removal.
One can't help but suspect that the folks who originally thought the review panel sounded like a grand idea suddenly decided they didn't really want much to do with it.
So the matter gets passed on to the DA. Lykos probably isn't going to bring criminal charges. The review panel will use that decision as justification not to do anything. And that will be that.
That's how I see it playing out, anyway. What do you think?