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Mayor Mike Rawlings Says Uber Investigation Found Nothing Done Illegally or Unethically

The Dallas City Council’s executive session is over, and Mayor Mike Rawlings just spoke to the press briefly about his report on City Hall’s dealings with Uber.

“I did not hear of or discover any potential illegal or unethical activity or behavior that should be investigated further,” he said. However, “several bad judgments were made throughout this process.”

The mayor believes city staff members demonstrated a lack of understanding of a changing transportation market in Dallas, which led to an unclear legal strategy on how to deal with the changes.

“The small group of city individuals believed they alone could solve this problem. That judgment was naïve,” he said.

When it came to interim city manager A.C. Gonzalez putting the proposed ordinance change on the council’s consent agenda without the need for public discussion, Rawlings was “highly disappointed.” (Gonzalez has apologized already.)

But Rawlings also placed blame on the city attorney’s office, where Uber’s operation was judged to be illegal. This led to the city’s use of vice cops against the car-service app’s operations, though Dallas Police Chief David Brown expressed his opinion at the time that it wasn’t an effective way of dealing with the issue.

Rawlings concluded by emphasizing that all city staff members were acting in what they believed was the best interests of the city, merely demonstrating poor judgment in their actions.

“We love new business in Dallas, and we want to attract all kinds of new business,” Rawlings said.

As for the future of services like Uber, the city council’s transportation committee will take up the matter of any need for ordinance changes.

Now we’ll need to see what the full Uber report says.

UPDATE: Read the whole thing for yourself. Part 1 here. Part 2 here.

  • Luke

    What “problem,” Mayor Mike?

  • Pegaso

    There is NOTHING unethical about deploying vice (VICE!!!) police against a business to appease a political contributor that competes with that business. NOTHING AT ALL.

    Welcome to Dallas.

  • Marcus Cady

    Wasn’t Al Lipscomb’s conviction and incarceration tied to crooked cab dealings?

  • Mavdog

    The Mayor has a very unique (and I might add twisted) definition of the phrase “unethical behavior”.

    It seems to me the actions of City staff in a) pushing Dallas Police to employ undercover vice personnel, b) rewriting the Dallas Code in an attempt to legislate Uber out of business, and c) putting the rewrite of the Dallas code onto the Consent Agenda of the City Council, which was an attempt to pass said rewrite without ANY public discussion, is a clear case of “unethical behavior”.

    The Mayor wishes us to mind him when he says “Nothing to see here, just keep on moving” but we all know what went down. I just thank Kingston and Griggs for exposing the affair. If only we had a Mayor with the ethical strength to bring the hammer to those who tried the gambit….

  • Luke

    You can make these kinds of decisions when you are not running for a second mayoral term.

  • Pegaso

    You can also thank Robert Wilonsky at the Dallas Morning News for being the first to report this.

  • jmckee

    The message in all of this to me is Gonzalez can’t be trusted and should go.

  • Pegaso

    They must think we’re SO dumb! How is what happened not blatantly unethical?

  • Thomas Hooper

    So once again Dallas has postponed the future for the good of its inhabitants.

  • critic

    How about ‘Stinging ‘ Yellow Cab for 2 weeks
    I suggest everyone who loves Uber call Yellow taxi for a ride whether you are on Knox Henderson , McKinney, or Downtown for a lift. When the filthy wheels show up, open the door and say the mayor would not even ride in this vehicle and walk away. The stench of this council, mayor, and taxi cab company are an embarrassment to Dallasites

  • Watcher McWatcherson

    Yeah, yeah, yeah, AC Gonzales, yeah, yeah, yeah. He was a small part in all of this if you read Wilonsky/Bush’s articles. Mayor Suhm – remind me why is she still running our city as a consultant – and her pal, Carol Reed, pushed for this real hard. Meanwhile, most of our city council willingly went along with this because they are receiving money from the cab companies. This how Dallas city politics have operated forever.

    The City Manager form of government is beautiful because it ensures no accountability by the city staff or the hired hands (The Council), and it allows businesses to “hide the salami,” as the Mayor says, when they want funnel money to any of these groups to do their bidding.

    I love the newly found outrage of the corruption by the DMN and other tradition bound publications. Help change it….

  • Watcher McWatcherson

    I’m thinking massive, peaceful civil disobedience at a City Council Meeting in the Arts District or a Citizen’s Council Meeting might get more attention and action. Business runs our town, and you have to show them (us) we’re tired of RL Thornton politics. It’s the 21st century, man.

  • Anonymous

    Rawlings is as corrupt as the rest of them. The emails tell the tale. So do the donations he received from Yellow Cab. Rawlings, Gonzalez, Zapata, Suhm, John Barr, the vice squad commanders, Yellow Cab, Sheffie Kadane, and that coven of money grubbing Reed witches disguised as political consultants. Corrupt swine. Every last one of them.

  • tested

    The message to me is that the Attorney General’s office needs to investigate this issue. The city manager, mayor, police chief, city attorney’s office and several members of the city council need to answer some questions under oath.

  • JtB

    Bring back Laura Miller.

  • Wylie H Dallas

    What about the fact that the City illegally convened in executive session to review the report?

  • Raymond Crawford

    2 Truths:
    1. Mary Suhm had everything to do with this despite AC’s attempts to protect “the Queen”.
    2. 1 Term Mike