KCI contract selection delayed by conflict of interest complaint

An ethics complaint against a member of the Kansas City International Airport selection committee has delayed plans to publicly reveal the recommended choice to build and finance a new single terminal at the airport, which the committee previously said it would announce Thursday afternoon.

The complaint, which surfaced Tuesday, alleges that Kansas City councilwoman Jolie Justus had a conflict of interest because she works at Kansas City law firm Shook, Hardy & Bacon, which represented Burns & McDonnell in a commercial litigation dispute that settled in 2016. Burns & McDonnell is one of four teams that have submitted proposals for the $1 billion terminal project.

The delay represents another setback in picking a proposal and starting a campaign for a November vote on the KCI project by the public.

The ethics complaint came about during a tumultuous day at City Hall. Mayor Sly James accused an aide of councilwoman Katheryn Shields of having improper contact with a representative of AECOM-led KCI Partnership, another proposer seeking the $1 billion contract.

During last Thursday’s council session, aide Le-Shyeka Roland was seen sitting next to Monti Valrie, a consultant with the AECOM-led KCI Partnership. James said Valrie had his arm around Roland, while she rested her head on his shoulder.

Read more: Kansas City Star

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