making local government more ethical

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Robert Wechsler
In May I wrote a blog post about a so-called ethics emergency in Corpus Christi, declared by a lame-duck council at its last meeting. This so-called emergency was the excuse for pushing through ethics reforms without running them by the city's ethics commission or allowing public discussion. The new council quickly suspended the reforms, pending review by the ethics commission.

At least that was the excuse the new council used...
Robert Wechsler
Open Records Requests and Ethics Proceedings
In an unusual twist on the confidentiality of ethics proceedings, counsel for the Colorado Springs mayor's former client, the person who gave rise to the mayor's apparent conflict of interest, has made an open records request for all documents related to the ethics proceeding against the mayor, according to an article in the Colorado...
Robert Wechsler
A few local government ethics issues come together in the story behind the arrest today of 44 people in a political corruption and international money laundering ring based in New Jersey. The story is best told, so far, in the press release of the U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey.

Robert Wechsler
"In my view, the suggestion [by Judge Sotomayor] that [campaign] contributions are tantamount to bribery should offend anyone who’s ever contributed to a political campaign — including the millions of Americans who donated money in small and large amounts to the Presidential campaign of the man who nominated Judge Sotomayor to the Supreme Court."

Sen. Mitch McConnell (Rep, KY) in a press...
Robert Wechsler
The Politicization of Officials Selecting Ethics Commission Members
People should not be political footballs, and ethics commission members even moreso. But that's what can happen when officials are allowed to select ethics commission members. According to an article in yesterday's Tulsa ...
Robert Wechsler
Yesterday, the Seattle City Council passed amendments to the city's ethics code, based on recommendations from the city's ethics commission, according to an article in the West Seattle ...