"If there were a smell test, we would all need some serious gas masks."
Cintra consultant turned Governor Perry's legislative aide, turned Cintra lobbyist. It's hard to keep up with who is working for who. Or is it?
Austin lobbyist Dan Shelley has been one of Governor Perry's aides and Cintra's inside man.
Shelley worked for Cintra making introductions to TxDOT just in time to see them get a winning proposal submitted for the Trans Texas Corridor. Then he worked for Governor Perry just in time to lobby the Legislature to protect and strengthen laws benefiting Cintra. Now he's back working for Cintra again planning all expense paid trips to Canada for TxDOT and Texas law makers.
The Dallas Morning News reports this morning, "Mr. Shelley resigned his state job in September and struck a lobbying deal with Cintra worth between $50,000 and $100,000 to work from March through the end of this year. In addition, his daughter and lobbying partner, Jennifer Shelley-Rodriguez, will earn between $25,000 and $50,000 from the company over the same period, state records show."
The four-day, three-night, trip to Canada would have put key Texas legislators and senior TxDOT officials together with Cintra well out of the view of Texans. CorridorWatch.org has learned that rooms were already booked for the group at the luxurious Le Royal Meridian King Edward Hotel in Toronto.
The Dallas Morning News reported that the lawmakers invited by Cintra included
TxDOT had their bags packed too. Here's the list obtained by CorridorWatch.org: Mary Ann Griss (Aide to Chairman Ric Williamson); Steve Simmons (Deputy Director); James Bass (Director of Finance); Amadeo Saenz (Asst Executive Director for Engineering Operations); Jefferson Grimes (Manager State Legislative Affairs); John Munoz (Deputy Director of Finance); and, Jeremiah Kuntz (former policy analyst for Sen. Staples’ Senate Infrastructure Development and Security Committee, and now a TxDOT employee).
And don't forget the TxDOT TTC Citizen's Advisory Committee. While most members of the committee (including Linda Stall of CorridorWatch.org) were apparently unaware about the all-expense-paid trip to Canada, select members were indeed invited.
"If there were a smell test, we would all need some serious gas masks," says David Stall, co-founder of CorridorWatch.org.
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