City Ethics president,
Carla Miller, worked with Integrity
Florida (Dan Krassner) and the Florida Alliance for
Retired Americans (Richard Polangin) on a Resolution that
passed at the annual conference of the Alliance last week. This is
part of an emerging citizen initiative in Florida that involves
numerous groups joining forces to fight for the passage of
effective laws in Florida to close loopholes in current ethics
laws. As stated in the resolution, Florida leads the nation in
public corruption convictions.
The resolution (see below) calls for a change in Florida law that
will allow the Ethics Commission to self-initiate complaints. Now,
if they become aware of an ethics violation, they have to sit on
their hands and do nothing unless a citizen files a complaint.
Also, the resolution calls for the creation of independent Ethics
Officers statewide who can only be fired with the approval of the
State Ethics Commission. There are also recommendations on
transparency of state contracts and a review of penalties for
In order to have effective ethics reform, citizen groups must be
engaged and educated. Then they need to be coordinated into a
focused lobbying group. This resolution is the first of many to
come in Florida and we will be shooting for legislative changes in
the spring of 2013.