Mayor wants investigation into LP&L bid process - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Mayor wants investigation into LP&L bid process

Lubbock Mayor Glen Robertson Lubbock Mayor Glen Robertson

Lubbock Mayor Glen Robertson is calling an investigation into Lubbock Power and Light.

"I have been asked to handle this discreetly and quietly and to allow things to naturally work out.  I'm not gonna do it," said Robertson.

The mayor wants to know more about LPL's plans to generate electricity. Not now, but six years from now... starting in 2019.

That's when their current agreement with Xcel Energy runs out.

"There have been numerous allegations made of law breaking, there has been numerous made of bid rigging," Robertson. 

The mayor has questions about LPL's RFP - that stands for "Request for Proposal." That's the process LP&L goes through to get people to provide bids on a project.

Mayor Robertson says he has received information that rules that have to be followed under that process may have been broken.

He did not give us specifics, but says the information is too serious to ignore.

For example, there are certain rules that need to be followed during an RFP.

"During the process, we have what we call the dark period which means nobody involved can talk to one of the vendors. You cannot allow one of your vendors to write or help write specifications for the RFP," he said. 

It is a contract valued at more than $6.5 billion and the mayor says there is a lot at stake.

"We can't have these type of clouds hanging over the biggest contract that anybody in the history of Lubbock and possibly the future of the City of Lubbock will have to sign."

If laws are broken, he says the City of Lubbock could face severe consequences.

"Has there been any laws broken by any City of Lubbock employees?  Has there been any violations of any of these state laws or these procurement laws? And are we in jeopardy as a city of being sued?"

The mayor says no one on the utility board or city council brought this to his attention.

The council is set to talk about starting an investigation at next week's city council meeting.

LP&L's Electric Utility Board Chairman Gail Kring released this statement regarding LP&L's bid process:

"The Electric Utility Board recently learned of the potential issues regarding LP&L's RFP for future generation. The Board will review this matter thoroughly and will take all necessary and appropriate actions based on its findings."

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