Growth committee will follow bylaws to ensure integrity

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer

An advisory panel for growth issues related to the new mission at Cannon Air Force Base will be governed by disclosure and ethics bylaws, its overseeing committee decided Wednesday.

To mitigate conflicts of interest, the Local Growth Management Committee unanimously agreed to adopt the bylaws for its subcommittee — the Local Growth Management Organization — during a meeting Wednesday.

Committee member Clovis Mayor David Lansford said the bylaws will “protect the integrity” of the committee and the subcommittee.

The bylaws will instruct subcommittee members to reveal conflicts of interest that may arise in discussions and uphold ethical standards, Lansford said.

“We need to make sure the people (on the subcommittee) are here for the right things and not for profit,” committee member and Clovis City Commissioner Juan Garza said.

Subcommittee members are community volunteers and serve as advisors to the committee on growth issues related to the 16th Air Force Special Operations Wing.
The 16th SOW assumes ownership of Cannon in October 2007.

Anticipated growth issues related to the new mission mainly involve infrastructure needs, civic leaders have said. Subcommittee members will likely consult with Air Force officials, the Office of Economic Adjustment (an arm of the Department of Defense that helps communities affected by department decisions), and go on field trips to obtain relevant information about the needs of the 16th SOW, civic leaders have said.

Conflicts tied to real estate, such as the creation of subdivisions, or expansion of services, such as health care, could arise within the subcommittee, committee members said Wednesday.

Additional bylaws for the subcommittee dictate it will not be subject to open meeting laws, and therefore, may meet in private. Because the committee has policy-making power, it will be subject to open meeting laws, in accordance with state laws.

The Local Growth Management Committee is slated to vote on by-laws for itself and its subcommittee at its next meeting, scheduled for 9 a.m. Dec. 6 at Clovis City Hall.