PARIS, TX -- Last night's council meeting left citizens shocked as Mayor AJ Hashmi's presentation questioned the Paris Economic Development Corporations expenses.
PEDC Director Steve Gilbert says the mayor's presentation was taken out of context.
"I'm very confident that everything that we did, all the expenditures that we made were within the law and were within our policies." said Gilbert. "We wouldn't of done them had we not thought that they were."
During the 30-minute presentation the mayor presented receipts showing purchases of meals, alcohol and airline tickets by the PEDC, questioning whether the purchases were necessary.
Gilbert says the controversy affects how businesses look at Paris.
"When it looks as though we have internal strife and controversy in our community it really hurts our ability to be competitive."
Our calls to Hashmi seeking comment were not returned.
The PEDC was not given a chance to respond last night, but will have a presentation explaining the charges at the next council meeting.
"At some point we all need to act like grown ups and professionals and come together and find a way to resolve this, as opposed to continuing for it to play out in the public meetings." said Gilbert.