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A former top aide to Gov. Gray Davis — who’s now a partner at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips — told a legislative committee late Wednesday night that although his firm represented Oracle in a $100 million license agreement with the state, no conflict existed.

Steven Nissen, former director of the state’s Office of Planning and Research, told lawmakers investigating a $97 million Oracle software purchase that he was unaware Manatt was representing Oracle when he had a deputy sign off on a “Governor’s Action Request” last year that let the deal proceed. He added that he had little knowledge of the Oracle deal while working for the state.

Nissen, a former executive director of the California State Bar, said he first found out about Manatt’s role in January, a few days after he left the Davis administration and rejoined Manatt in its Los Angeles office.

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