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Ethics Codes

Robert Wechsler
This week, Seattle's expanded Whistleblower Protection Code became effective (attached; see below). As what appears to be the most extensive local whistleblower code, it deserves a look from any local government seeking to draft or improve whistleblower provisions.

The major changes to the code, according to the ethics commission's (SEEC) website, are:
Employees who report wrongdoing to their supervisor or other person in their chain of command will now be protected...
Robert Wechsler
Sometimes Withdrawal and Formal Processes Are Not Enough
It never looks good when a high-level elected official gets a job with the government while in office or soon after leaving office. It looks like he got the job because of his influence and relationships with those who made the decision.

According to an article in the Observer-Reporter, the North...
Robert Wechsler
Mike DeBonis's article in the Washington Post last week describes an operatic ethics matter, with several twists and complications, with dramatic cries of innocence mixed with scathing accusations of guilt. The article is certainly more exciting than this blog post...
Robert Wechsler
This week, the Broward County (FL) inspector general filed a Review of the Existing Ethics Structure (attached; see below) of the countywide ethics program that he oversees, and which came into being via charter amendments overwhelmingly approved by the county's voters in late 2010. The 21-page report focuses on a two-part reform recommendation:  (1) an...
Robert Wechsler
According to an article in the Capital Gazette, a former Anne Arundel County (MD) county executive, who was convicted early this year of a misdemeanor for misconduct in office, wants to run for office again, despite the judge ordering, as part of the criminal penalty, that he not be permitted to run...
Robert Wechsler
In 2008, New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine established a special task force to take a look at the state's local government ethics program. In September 2010, the task force filed a report that recommended substantial changes to the program (attached; see below). Nothing was done.

The state's local government ethics rules were set to expire in September of this year. The Local Finance Board, which administers the...