City Hall

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon's Lack Of Transparency, Accountability Should Be On List of Story Ideas City Suggests to Media

Every month the city of Phoenix Public Information Office sends out a blast to media with story ideas reporters might consider covering on a slow news day.

Some of the June story ideas include covering the fire ban the Phoenix parks department has instituted in the city's desert preserves or the city-employee suggestions that have improved city operations and services and produced nearly $6 million in savings, or the need to keep swimming pools safe and clean.

New Times would like to add some story ideas to the list that would go a long way in restoring accountability and transparency to the Office of the Mayor:

Why does Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon continue to evade questions from New Times about who paid for the Super Bowl tickets that he and his girlfriend and former political fundraiser, Elissa Mullany, used to attend the 2008 game in Glendale and the 2010 game in Miami Gardens, Florida.

Or why won't Gordon come clean about how many times he and his girlfriend have been Phoenix developer Steve Ellman's guests on a private jet or in suites at sporting events, including the Super Bowl.

Or why won't Gordon offer any explanation about various expenses from the State of Downtown fund, an account that receives donations from private and public sources to market and improve downtown Phoenix.

Or about who was reimbursed (and why) more than $3,000 from that fund for "NFL charges."

Or why Gordon, even in the face of a lawsuit from Washington, D.C.-based think tank Judicial Watch against the cash-strapped City of Phoenix, won't release logs kept by his security detail that would reveal how he spends his time during the day and whether those publicly funded police officers were used appropriately or as a personal shuttle service.

Or why he won't reveal how many more companies engaged in business before the city have hired his girlfriend.

New Times already has written about Mullany's employment ties to Ellman and Veolia, a company that manages the city's bus services. Gordon refuses to say whether there are others.

Now these are story ideas to go after.

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Monica Alonzo
Contact: Monica Alonzo