making local government more ethical

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Consultants are an in-between group. They're not officials or employees, nor are they people who do business with the city. They advise or sometimes act for the city, and have access to confidential information as well as special relations with city staff. Please share your thoughts about and experiences with the inclusion of consultants in an ethics program.

100(17). Consultants*

A consultant* may not represent a person or entity other than the city in any matter, transaction, action, or proceeding in which the consultant participated personally and substantially as a consultant to the city. Nor may a consultant represent a person or entity in any matter, transaction, action, or proceeding against the interest of the city.

Comment: Other rules that apply expressly to consultants* are 100(8) (Confidential Information), 100(21) (Honesty in Application for Positions), and 101(2) (Transactional Disclosure). Also see the comments to 100(11), the revolving door provision.

Many codes also include language such as: A consultant may not accept other employment that will either impair the consultant's independence of judgment with respect to the consultant's official duties for the city, or that will require or induce the consultant to disclose confidential information pursuant to subsection 8 of this section. 

The same problem appears as in the comments to 100(1) above: how does one know or prove that employment will impair someone's judgment or induce someone to disclose confidential information? It is enough that consultants are prevented from representing parties against the city or in matters the city hired them to deal with, and that they be included in the confidential information provision, 100(8).

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