The latest in a series of posts on City government
Stephen F. Thode is Professor Emeritus, Department of Finance and Law, Lehigh University.
Let me frame this as a simple question:
Do Members of Bethlehem City Council believe it is ethical for a Council Member to participate in a decision to grant public money (taxpayer dollars) to an entity for which that Council Member is an owner, and, therefore, has a financial interest in the outcome?
In a previous communication, Steve advises that “owner” is “the word the Co-Op itself uses.” Gadfly had been wondering how membership in BFC differs from membership in, say, the YMCA/YWCA, of which, it is conceivable, some or all Councilpersons are members, and which has been awarded funding too. Should membership in the Y trigger recusal as well? But the idea of ownership, that BFC members benefit financially (discounts, sales, etc.), probably answers Gadfly’s question.