(Las Vegas, NV) Mayor Greg Davis and two aldermen from Southaven, Mississippi, traveled to Las Vegas friday morning to attention a convention of real estate developers.
Joining Davis were aldermen Ronnie Hale and William Brooks.
Davis also brought a personal friend along as they checked into the four star Mandalay Bay resort.
The group made the trip to attend a convention frequented by real estate developers, and attended in the past by Mayor Davis.
This year, after the mayor has been cited for misspending by the Mississippi state auditor, aldermen decided to send two others to keep watch over the mayor’s actions.
“We're not here to follow him around, we're here to make sure the money is being spent right,” said Hale.
The convention began Sunday, but the group arrived Friday as Davis scheduled meetings with developers, but reportedly didn’t invite the aldermen to attend.
Southaven tax payers foot the bill of more than $300 a night for the group to be here, two days early.
The first day of the convention began with music, food, and alcohol.
Organizers said it was an opportunity for people to network, but Mayor Davis and the delegation from Southaven never showed up.
It’s a decision other business and city leaders say they wouldn’t have made.
“It would be a huge mistake not to be here, this is the event to be at," said Pedro Calderon.
“There may be companies that, if you don't work the floor, you're not going to see them outside these doors," said Venus Wahle, an economic development executive from Texas.
Southaven Alderman Ronnie Hale agreed, saying, "We did. We missed a big opportunity Sunday."
Monday, Davis showed up at the convention saying he worked two other functions the first night of the convention.
He tod us they showed up so early because of meetings not conducted inside convention halls.
Alderman Ronnie Hale gives the mayor credit for his spending habits on most of the trip.
They passed up the Marriott right next to the convention center and opted for the Mandalay Bay, more than four miles away.
But they paid $109 a night, a special rate through the convention.
Hale also added that the mayor’s personal friend who went on the trip, had his flight paid for by the mayor and not the city of Southaven.