The City of Denton’s Board of Ethics convened in a “special called” meeting at City Hall on Wednesday evening, where a four-member panel unanimously ruled that Councilwoman Deb Armintor, who represents At Large Place 5, had violated the city’s Ethics Ordinance.
Councilman Paul Meltzer, who represents At Large Place 6, was also scheduled to be at the ethics hearing on Wednesday but was unable to attend due to a family emergency, according to chairman Jesse Davis. Meltzer’s ethics hearing will be rescheduled to a later date, according to the Board of Ethics.
Though Armintor was found to be in violation of the city’s Ethics Ordinance, they ruled not to administer sanctions against Armintor for voting on matters relating to a polling location at UNT in early March, according to the North Texas Daily.
“Last night’s decision made zero sense to me, and whatever deliberations occurred last night by the committee after all the evidence was presented and heard were made behind closed doors,” Armintor said in a Facebook post. “I look forward to the tape recording of that meeting being made public so that everyone can hear what happened for themselves.”
The four-member panel included two new members, Ronnie Mohair, who was appointed by District 1 representative Councilman Gerard Hudspeth, and Rob Rayner, who was appointed by District 4 representative Councilman John Ryan. The remaining members of the panel included temporary chairperson Don Cartwright and board member Karen McDaniels.
Ethics board member, Ron Johnson, who brought forth the ethics complaint against Armintor and Meltzer, noted that while he did not necessarily agree with the Ethics Ordinance in its current form, it needed to be upheld.
Armintor said that she viewed the advisory opinion regarding her ability to deliberate on matters relating to UNT, which was drafted by Davis and delivered by Johnson, as an “ill-informed advisory opinion.”
“I decided not to let a bad opinion get in the way of doing my duty to the public [regarding] voting rights and access,” Armintor said in a Facebook post. “My vote did not violate anything in the ethics ordinance. Not a thing.”
Featured Image: Jesse Davis addresses of the Board of Ethics at the Feb. 20, 2019 meeting. Image by: Trevor Seibert.