It appears that Jay Blossman, the outgoing chairman of the Louisiana Public Service Commission (PSC), broke a public service commission rule when he recently held a fundraiser for Eric Skrmetta, a Metairie Republican who is hoping to replace Blossman.
Blossman hosted the fundraiser, which was $1000 per person/per couple, for Skrmetta at the Camelot Club in Baton Rouge on September 9. On September 10, the PSCs regularly scheduled business and executive session took place at the PSC headquarters in Baton Rouge.
According to Louisiana Public Service Commission Special Order 43-2003,Commissioners shall be prohibited from holding any fundraiser within 72 hours before or after a regularly scheduled Business and Executive Session.
There are four other restrictions within the Special Order, which was adopted by the commission on September 10, 2003. The motion to vote on the new ethics rules was made by Commissioner Field and seconded by Commissioner Blossman.
For his part, Blossman says he did host the fundraiser, but he didnt break what he calls the spirit of the rule.
You shouldnt have a dinner (fundraiser) the night before you vote on issues that affect those at the dinner, says Blossman. He says he would have broken the rule if he had been holding the fundraiser for himself, not another candidate.
Eric Skrmetta cant vote on anything coming before the PSC. Not yet, Blossman says.