Time Limitations on Ethics Proceedings in Louisiana, and Why They're Bad
The Louisiana ethics board
handles ethics, disclosure, campaign finance, and lobbying for the
state and for the state's local governments. It is, like all ethics
agencies, understaffed, underfunded, and overstretched. So according to
in Monday's Baton Rouge Advocate
, it has asked, among
other things, for a longer period of time in which to do its work. The law
now gives the board "one year from the date upon which a sworn
complaint is received to either dismiss the complaint or file formal
This seems reasonable. How long should it take simply to file charges?
But this assumes (i) that there is no backlog of cases, and (ii) that
everyone is cooperating. It also assumes that the ethics board can get
quorums for its meetings, that there aren't other considerations, such
as whether to turn the matter over to criminal authorities, and that
related matters aren't discovered, expanding the investigation.