Did a Dallas Council Member Benefit From a Zoning Change He Pushed? An Ethics Panel Wants to Talk About It

With less than a week away from the start of early voting in Dallas, a preliminary panel of the city’s Ethics Advisory Commission has moved to investigate a complaint against City Council member Philip Kingston for possibly benefiting from a zoning change in his own neighborhood in East Dallas.The allegation, made anonymously through the City Auditor’s office, states that Kingston shouldn’t have pushed to allow Accessory Dwelling Units -- often known as mother-in-law suites or granny flats -- in the Belmont Addition Conservation District.Kingston challenged the complaint’s validity and disputed that he received any economic benefit from the zoning case.But shortly after a City Council vote on Jan. 9 approving those changes -- in which Kingston voted in favor -- he and his wife Melissa pulled a permit for a second-floor addition of a detached garage at his home near Lower Greenville.Months before, Melissa Kingston had filed a conservation district work review form with the city’s Department of Sustainable Development and Construction, proposing to remodel their kitchen and “expand [their] existing garage loft.”The complaint claimed that Kingston knew that this vote and his promotion of ADUs “would that would affect his own economic interests” since they could be rented out, yet he chose to proceed anyway.  Continue reading...

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