- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 15, 2015

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The North Slope Borough Assembly voted to investigate allegations of ethics violations made against Mayor Charlotte Brower.

The Assembly’s unanimous vote on Monday was made at Brower’s request and comes after a disclosure by Brower that borough staff had procured goods from members of her family.

“It came to my attention that staff was approving the purchase of goods from my family members without my knowledge or approval,” Brower wrote in a July 7 memo to Assembly members. “When I learned this, I looked into it, found that it was true, and issued a memorandum changing Borough purchasing policy so it does not happen again.”

Details about the purchases paid for by the borough and which members of the mayor’s family received payments was not immediately known.

According to the mayor’s memo, a law firm, Holland & Knight, requested documents relating to the payments. That request prompted Brower to ask for an independent investigation into whether the purchases violated the borough code of ethics.

A spokesman, Kristine Hilderbrand, said Brower was traveling and was not available for comment Tuesday. Hilderbrand released the mayor’s memo to the Assembly to the media as well as a prepared statement on Brower’s behalf.

“I take public concerns and allegations about any department very seriously and I felt that it was in the best interest of our residents for an independent investigation to occur to promote transparency and accountability within the borough,” the statement quoted Brower as saying.

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