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WEDNESDAY, JULY 18, 2007
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Official facing ethics probe watches baseball in Alabama Power's box

BIRMINGHAM (AP) — State environmental chief Trey Glenn, already the target of an ethics investigation about whether he improperly accepted gifts, watched a Montgomery Biscuits baseball game from the private box of Alabama Power Co.

The Birmingham News reported Tuesday that Glenn attended Sunday's game in Montgomery.

Alabama Power considers invitations to public officials ethical and legal and routinely invites public officials on such outings to keep communication open and friendly, said company spokeswoman Carrie Kurlander.

Invitation

Company officials and Glenn said he wasn't the public official actually invited to sit in the box Sunday. His mother, Wetumpka Mayor Jo Glenn, was invited by an employee in the power company's Wetumpka office, and the mayor invited her son, his wife and three children along.

Trey Glenn, director of the Alabama Department of Environmental Management, said he accepted the seats in the Alabama Power box because his family likes baseball.

He said he didn't ask his mother whose box he would be sitting in before arriving at the game. He said sitting with an Alabama Power lobbyist and other employees did not give the utility special access to him.

"Anybody who wants to meet with me and talk to me, I have an open-door policy," said Glenn, whose agency regulates Alabama Power on environmental issues.

In April, the State Ethics Commission found probable cause to believe Glenn may have violated the state ethics law by accepting gifts.

The Ethics Commission acted on a complaint filed by Bill Johnson, director of the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs, where Glenn worked before getting the ADEM job.

The complaint accused Glenn of using his position at ADEM's Office of Water Resources to obtain personal trips.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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