The Memphis Police Union has filed an ethical complaint against City Council attorney Allan Wade. The union alleges millions in payouts from the city means Wade cannot be impartial.
Wade says he is impartial when representing the city and city council and defends the millions he's received.
It's a complaint to the city of Memphis Board of Ethics asking for a formal opinion on the impartiality of Wade.
"Am I worried about this? No I am not," says Wade
Wade is employed by the city council, but he also is paid through several contracts to represent the city of Memphis in various lawsuits.
Mike Williams, President of the Memphis Police Union, says representing both the executive and legislative branch of city government is a conflict of interest.
"If he has to provide them with legal counsel, that many contradict what the city says, he's supposed to be in a position to be able to do that," Williams said. "But you can't do that when the city is paying you millions of dollars a year."
Wade's annual salary is nearly $92,000 a year. Since 2012, the Wade Firm has earned more than $2.3 million in legal contracts.
But, Wade defends every cent.
"The city has benefited immensely from my representation," he said. "I have a list of 50 cases we've won for the city and saved them millions of dollars. So whatever I've been paid, I feel I deserved every penny of it."
Wade says his job description permits him to represent both the city and city council.
"I'm not being biased in any way," he said. "I am protecting my primary client's interests, which is to protect the budget powers of the city council. The mayor does not disagree with that, so there is no conflict."
The unions are suing the city right now over the 4.6 percent pay cut and what they say are other violation of their agreement with the city. The administration and the unions are also stalled in current contract negotiations and city councilmen are supposed to be the impartial officiators in the impasse.
"We want to get a final answer on this whether this is ethical or not. If we don't get the answers we want here, we'll take it a little bit higher," says Williams.
Williams adds he'll appeal to the state or Department of Justice next.
WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
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