CONFLICT OF INTEREST: CASE STUDY
Former Governor Murkowski repeatedly told the legislature and the public that a 30-year lock-in on oil taxes and a 45-year lock-in on gas taxes were absolutely essential for the “fiscal stability” needed for his proposed gas pipeline contract. Now we learn that the governor’s own consultant told him otherwise.
In a letter to the governor dated February 1, 2006, Pedro van Meurs, the governor’s highly paid gas pipeline guru consultant, stated that such a tax lock-in was not necessary. Yet the same Pedro van Meurs briefed the legislature that the tax lock-in was critical for a successful pipeline contract. Apparently that’s how some consultants make the big bucks.
It’s a good thing that ethics bills and ethics training has been at the top of the legislative agenda since we gaveled in on January 16th.