Mayor's new frac sand job ignites debate in Red Wing

  • Article by: TONY KENNEDY , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 11, 2013 - 11:45 PM

Residents swarmed into City Hall with conflict-of-interest concerns; he said he won't quit.

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arspartzFeb. 11, 1310:27 PM

Would it be a conflict if he were on the board of a non-profit that pushed for the environment?

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snarkattackFeb. 11, 1311:42 PM

If he were a paid lobbyist for an anti- frac sand environmental group, such as Save the Bluffs, the same conflict of interest and ethics analysis would apply. Politically it might be viewed differently.

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gmamatFeb. 12, 13 7:59 AM

Can you expect someone to have no opinion and be totally objective when they serve the public? I think not. But to be a decision maker and have influence in a commercial enterprise does seem to cross the line. Expecting some objectvity...especially when money is involved seems dicey. Congratulations to the community who cares enough to come forward and speak up for the good of humankind. We all need to step up when called upon.

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julio57Feb. 12, 13 8:23 AM

While it is clear that could certainly be a conflict of interest with Egan being mayor and head of a Frac Sand group, is there any job that does not create a conflict of interest? What if he was general contractor? What is the difference between this job and being the head of a business group? Or a wind-turbine manufacturer? Or a union delegate? Or a farm association representative? A MNDOT employee? Would there be outrage if this guy was heading up an anti-frac sand group? The modern answer to any controversy is to demand resignation, which is absurd. Also, as mayor, he does not have sweeping power. The council as a whole still does the legislating. If the public thinks this is too much of a conflict of interest they will have an opportunity to vote him out of office.

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asmithe2Feb. 12, 13 8:46 AM

Nearly all of our elected officials have real jobs as well. It is part of the great bargain we make. We don't want politics to be a profession, so we hope regular people will take time from their daily lives to do the job. If we want pure thinkers in politics, then we should pay them in a manner that will allow them to have politician be their only job. Otherwise, we should hope that public servants will not be scared off by tactics like this, and will continue to step forward and add public service to their already full schedules.

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deadbovineFeb. 12, 1311:46 AM

This guy does not pass the Ethics 101 stink test.

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sandrafraFeb. 12, 13 2:19 PM

He was obviously hired for his frac position because he was elected mayor, he didn't have the position when the people elected him. The type of damage done to the city and surrounding area is very costly to repair and this man is in a position to change how the city negotiates with the mining company, he is not just a person with an opinion or an employee with no real say.

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