The FPPC is looking to allegations that an Indio Councilwoman failed to recuse herself from a possible conflict of interest, sparking allegations of cover-ups, fraud, and other wrongdoing.
The case against Lupe Ramos Watson was brought after a former city councilman filed a complaint with the FPPC in November. He claims that not only did the councilwoman fail to disclose her conflict of interest, she gave sworn testimony that attempted to hide her conflict. During the deposition in question, Watson denied voting on the project – even though the minutes from the meeting reflect a unanimous vote. Watson also denied making a motion on the land deal.
According to the Desert Sun article, Watson had financial interests in a parcel of property directly across from the transit center. Such a dealing could be found to be a conflict of interest. The FPPC has the authority to raise a fine of up to $5,000 per violation.
From the Desert Sun:
The Fair Political Practices Commission is investigating a complaint filed against Indio Councilwoman Lupe Ramos Watson that alleges a conflict of interest when she discussed and voted on various issues relating to a proposed $8 million transportation center.
Gene Gilbert, former city councilman and current candidate, filed the complaint in July against Watson, who is up for re-election in November.
Read the full article here.