Is he hiding something?

Last week was the deadline for Anchorage officials to disburse $156 million the city received from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act to help businesses and residents survive the pandemic’s economic effects.

Any money left over after Dec. 30 was supposed to be returned to the federal government.

You probably would like to know that all that tax money granted Anchorage went where it was supposed to go; that it all was utilized properly; and, that there was no hanky-panky. Assemblywoman Jamie Allard, who represents Eagle River-Chugiak, was thinking along the same lines. She wanted an independent audit of the CARES Act disbursements.

As chair of the Assembly Audit Committee, she was in a great spot to get the job done.

But, wait, Assembly Chairman Felix Rivera, facing a recall effort, “deplatformed” Allard from her role as head of Audit. That’s right, “deplatformed.” Sacked. Dumped. Booted. Why? He said he doesn’t like her tone. He replaced her with South Anchorage Assemblywoman Suzanne LaFrance, a solid, go-to member of the Assembly’s increasingly left-leaning majority.

Rivera emailed Allard, “I don’t appreciate your tone in replying Mr. Alex Slivka (Chief Fiscal Officer and chief adviser on the Corona Virus Relief Fund,)” reported.

“I believe this committee will be better served by having a more seasoned chair.” Allard remains a regular voting member of the committee.

“A more seasoned chair?” In bureaucratese, we think that means more compliant, more amenable, more loyal. No kidding. Now, we are left to wonder where in all the Assembly rules, regulations and ordinances, Rivera is ordained Tone Master. You would think a guy facing a possible recall would have other things to fret about.

Most of all, it leaves us wondering: What is he hiding?

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