From Mat-Su editor Joseph Ditzler:
An investigation by Denali Law Group finds Wasilla Mayor Dianne Keller and the city economic development director, Casey Reynolds, acted improperly in their handling of the Meritage development project.
The report, delivered today to city hall, concludes evidence suggests Keller and Reynolds at worst committed "attempted coercion" when they wrote the owners of businesses neighboring Meritage property and used veiled threats of eminent domain.
"The only reason to conspire to send out letters of this nature would be to motivate the unwilling private sellers to enter into negotiations with the developer," the report states.
Prosecution would be difficult and unlikely, according to the report prepared by former prosecutors.
Six Robblee's, one of the affected businesses, resisted selling property to facilitate rerouting Sun Mountain Road at Hermon Road. Rerouting was meant to ease the increased traffic expected when Meritage completes a commercial development adjacent Six Robblees and the Windbreak Cafe.
The report concludes that no city official acted maliciously or for personal gain. "The administration simply wished to obtain a better and safer frontage road option."
Mat-Su reporter Rindi White is combing the 51-page report. Look for updates here shortly.