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Concert 'Badges' Raise Ethics Issues For Scranton County Commissioners

SCRANTON, PA (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Lackawanna County commissioners were faced with some tough questions about their access to concerts at the Toyota Pavilion at Montage Mountain, which a commissioner candidate suggested might represent a conflict of interest.

According to the Scranton Times-Tribune William T. Jones II, a Republican nominee for commissioner questioned Commissioner Corey O'Brien, a Democrat, about his use of an "unrestricted pass" at a Live Nation concert earlier this year. Jones suggested that this was a violation of the county's ethics code, which restricts employees from accepting gifts of any value from county vendors.

According to O'Brien and fellow majority Commissioner Mike Washo, commissioners do not get free tickets, but instead a badge that provide them with special access to venues owned, operated by, or affiliated with the county.

O'Brien went on to note that the badge doesn't entitle him to a seat and that he visited the Pavilion to inspect Live Nation's operation.

"That is just the way it works," The Times-Tribune reported him as saying. "If you want to sit down, if you want to get a seat there, you are going to pay for it."

Live Nation is nearing the end of a 10-year management contract with the county over the venue and is expected to submit a bid to continue in that capacity. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers