Councilmember Bingle files complaint against Continuum of Care Board Chair

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SPOKANE, Wash. — Spokane City Councilmember Jonathan Bingle filed a formal ethics complaint against Continuum of Care Board Chair Ben Stuckart for delaying the city’s selection process for the provider of a new shelter.

The complaint states that Stuckart participated in a board discussion on April 15 about which proposal to recommend. The complaint alleges that these actions violated the Continuum of Care’s conflict of interest policy.

“The appearance of impropriety by elected or appointed officials’ casts doubt on the fairness of government. The citizens of Spokane deserve to know that the process to select a new shelter has integrity and that their hard-earned taxpayer dollars are being stewarded appropriately,” Councilmember Bingle said.

Stuckart has past allegations of conflict of interest, as in 2021, the Washington State Auditor reported that Stuckart allegedly helped steer a city contract to Jewels Helping Hands when he was Spokane City Council President in 2019.

Stuckart was also fined $250 by the City’s Ethics Commission in 2014 for forwarding confidential information to the Spokane Firefighters Union amid a pending legal matter between the City and a union official.

“It is deeply troubling that the Chair of the Board, who stands to benefit from a six-figure salary as a project manager for one of the providers who has submitted a proposal for review, was a part of discussions about which proposal should be recommended. This gives an appearance of impropriety at best and corruption at worst,” Bingle said. “I hope that all governing agencies thoroughly and swiftly review this matter. To restore the public’s trust, immediate and appropriate action must be taken to address these severe allegations of conflicts of interest and potentially unethical actions of Ben Stuckart.”

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