June 15, 2011 2:21 PM
VICTORVILLE • Conflict of interest charges continue popping up in the city of Victorville, this time lodged against Councilwoman Angela Valles and one of the largest law firms in Southern California.
Mayor Ryan McEachron sent a letter to Best, Best & Krieger asking whether anyone associated with the Riverside-based firm had helped Valles draft several letters she’s sent over the last few months to her fellow council members and to the city manager.
The letters occasionally cited government code and case law, as Valles requested information and expressed concerned about the way Victorville was being run. She questioned the legality of how the City Council has handled closed session items, the adequacy of financial reporting from staff, the lack of an interfund loan policy and more. (Click here, here and here to read a sample of letters sent by Valles.)
If BBK helped Valles, McEachron said it would present a potential conflict of interest under the California State Bar Rules of Professional Conduct since the firm represents Victorville as employment and special grand jury counsel, plus as a member of the Victor Valley Wastewater Reclamation Authority.
Both Valles, who is VVWRA’s finance director, and Eric Garner, managing partner of BBK, have denied the charge.
“BBK and its attorneys did not advise Ms. Valles or assist her in any way with respect to either of the letters you referenced,” Garner replied to McEachron.
To read more about the possible conflict of interest, see the full story in Thursday’s Daily Press. Get complete stories every day with the “exactly as printed” Daily Press E-edition, only $5 per month! Click here to try it free for 7 days. To subscribe to the Daily Press in print or online, call (760) 241-7755, 1-800-553-2006 or click here.
Brooke Edwards may be reached at (760) 955-5358 or at bedwards@VVDailyPress.com.