PORTLAND, ORE., SEPT. 24 -- While he was secretary of energy, Donald P. Hodel asked a utility executive to help Hodel's son and six friends pay tour expenses of their rock and roll band, a published report said today.
Hodel, now secretary of the interior, asked for help in 1984 from the chief executive officer of Portland General Electric Co., which has dealings with the Department of Energy, The Oregonian said.
Robert H. Short, the chief executive officer, said he arranged for the band to receive $5,500 from a $34,000 donation the utility had promised for building construction at Warner Pacific College, a Christian liberal arts college in Portland.
Hodel's son, Dave, 26, taught for nine months in an unpaid position at the college during the 1983-84 school year.
There has been no allegation that Short's favor to Hodel was related to any specific transaction between the utility and the Energy Department, the newspaper said. However, federal regulations generally prohibit Cabinet officers from using their positions to benefit themselves or their families.
Jay A. Barber Jr., Warner Pacific's vice president for college advancement, said he had authorized paying the money to the Christian rock and roll band, known as Rushing Wind Ministries.
Barber said he thought the action was proper because the band included students and staff members of Warner Pacific and planned to promote the college on its tour.
Through his chief spokesman, Hodel acknowledged asking Short, a longtime friend, to introduce his son to people who might be willing to donate money to the band.