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Ethics commission report alleges LAX officials got gifts, trips from airline group

Los Angeles ethics commission investigators are recommending that civil charges be brought against six current and former managers at Los Angeles World Airports who allegedly took thousands of dollars worth of trips to China and Europe provided by an association that represents dozens of international airlines that use LAX.

According to records obtained by The Times, investigators found 22 alleged gift violations involving the six officials, including an airport engineer, planner and at least one assistant city attorney. Each official could be fined as much as $5,000 per violation or three times the value of the gifts.

The trips -- which involved weeklong cruises along the New England and Canadian coast last year, as well as previous visits to Beijing and Shanghai with stays in five-star hotels -- appear to violate state and municipal ordinances that limit the value of gifts government officials can receive to a few hundred dollars a year.

Several officials also failed to disclose the trips on their statements of economic interest, a public accounting required by state law and the city’s administrative code.

LAX Terminal Equity Corp. or LAXTEC, which represents about 40 international carriers at LAX, provided the trips at a substantial discount to LAX officials as a way to improve and maintain relationships with airport staff, records show. LAXTEC represents the interests of its member airlines before local, state and federal agencies and maintains facilities for its members that are tenants at the Tom Bradley International Terminal.

A staff representative of the City Ethics Commission said agency policy is not to confirm or deny any investigation before it is submitted to the full ethics commission.

A spokesman for LAXTEC also declined to comment.

A full story will follow soon.

-- Dan Weikel
Comments () | Archives (6)

Give me one good reason why these corrupted officers don't deserve to be fired from their job ? Are they above the law ? They are paid by our tax dollars - are they not ?

anybody who gets in touch with tax dollars is corrupt, these people, local...state and national elected officials!

Robin Yap: yes, they are above the law. Welcome to L.A. politics.

Have you people not read the story? "A full story to follow soon". This is a one-sided story from someone with an agenda who leaked it to the press. You need to read the full story and/or let the people defend the allegations before you pass judgment.

Actually no, they're not paid by our tax dollars. Los Angeles World Airports is a proprietary Department and is funded by airline fees, concessions, etc. That being said, there is a culture of corruption there where the senior management rewards its overpaid cronies with lucrative contracts, then leaves after a few years to high-paying jobs with those same companies. Why doesn't someone look into THAT?

just to clarify...LAWA is a proprietary, self-sustaining department (like the Port of LA and LADWP), but it is still a city agency, and as such, all LAWA employees are city employees, paid with public funds. Deputy city attorneys may be assigned to LAWA business, but they remain accountable to the City Attorney and they ARE paid directly from the general fund (taxpayer $). So if LAWA is misusing revenues, they're misusing OUR money, just as if it were tax money we were paying into public coffers...


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