making local government more ethical

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  1. How Candidates Should Deal Responsibly with Conflicts

    ... day he or she takes office. This provides a good occasion to look at the intersection of candidates and local government ethics codes, ... district). I recommended that the candidate make it clear how he was going to handle all the possible conflicts that might ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2011-07-15 10:06 - 0 comments

  2. Should Legislator-Lobbyist Communications Be Subject to the Legislative Immunity Privilege?

    ... the Committee's views on the necessity for, and appropriate content of, legislation. The Protection of Confidential Information ... deals with executive branch information all the time. But how could legislative immunity protect activity involving the early ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2016-02-17 13:19 - 0 comments

  3. An Advisory Opinion Gambit in the Big Apple

    Here's a clever way to abuse the advisory opinion process. A few months after conduct begins, seek ... 2007, a deputy mayor helped New York's billionaire mayor establish a family foundation. In 2008, the Conflicts of Interest Board (COIB) ... never at city hall. City aides refuse to say how many hours the deputy mayor works for the foundation, so the public is ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2010-08-10 13:52 - 0 comments

  4. The Positive Effects of Applicant Disclosure, and How to Enforce It

    Applicant disclosure is an effective part of local government ethics that is usually ignored. Usually it is officials who are required to disclose potential conflicts of interest, either in the form of ... their relationships with officials. If they are required to publicly disclose these relationships and, if they do not, risk losing their ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2009-08-25 08:29 - 0 comments

  5. How a Mayor's Special Obligations Affect His Right to Remain Silent

    right to remain silent.jpg Washington Post columnist Robert McCartney raised an issue in a column this weekend that I feel should be taken seriously. ... two of the current D.C. mayor's campaign aides confessed to having paid a mayoral candidate, and offered him a job in the coming ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2012-05-29 07:24 - 0 comments

  6. How to Unsettle a Settlement Agreement

    What happens if an ethics commission enters into a settlement agreement in which an official admits to certain conduct in violation of the jurisdiction's ethics code, and then the ... says he did nothing wrong, but felt it was best for everyone to pay the fine and move on? Well, according to an article in yesterday's ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2011-02-24 19:12 - 0 comments

  7. How ECs Can Preserve Their Full Allotment of Members

    ... the city's mayoral election), no longer has enough members to hold an official meeting. The seven-member board has three members, and it needs ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2013-01-18 16:15 - 0 comments

  8. How to Make Colorado's Ethics Program More Functional

    Colorado has an extremely dysfunctional ethics program, everyone is complaining about it, but approaches to fixing it are sometimes just as dysfunctional. A year ago, I wrote three ... and I could be mistaken on this point, I believe the AG's office would provide a legal defense in the case of such a suit. See, e.g., ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2014-02-28 09:19 - 2 comments

  9. Transparency -- Another Disaster Shows Us How Important It Is

    ... of municipal ethics. All those notices and agendas that have to be filed at the right time in the right place, all those document requests ... to read the rest of this blog entry. According to an article in the New York Times , the transparency problem at the center of ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2008-01-28 14:05 - 0 comments

  10. How Much Expertise Is Too Much?

    It is natural for a current or former firefighter to be interested in serving on a fire commission, or a current or former teacher in serving on a school board. But is there an ongoing conflict of interest in doing so? The question arose on the ...

    Robert Wechsler - 2007-12-21 09:25 - 1 comment