making local government more ethical

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Robert Wechsler
A post yesterday in Coates' Canons: NC Local Government Law Blog raises an interesting issue about the situation of a local government candidate who has an interest in a contract with the local government which, by NC law, is prohibited not for candidates, but for a winning candidate the day he or she takes office. This provides a good occasion to look at the intersection of candidates and local government ethics...
Robert Wechsler
It's fascinating how different issues are important to local government officials in difference places at different times. I couldn't say that officials will always dig in their heels and fight this ethics provision, or that another ethics provision never raises an eyebrow.

Take Broward County, FL, for example. After numerous arrests and convictions of local officials, the county commission passed a new ethics ordinace, and the county's citizens voted to have this ordinance apply to...
Robert Wechsler
On Friday, the Louisville ethics commission found that a council member intentionally violated several ethics provisions. This was its first major action under the city's new ethics code, which I wrote about last year. The EC gave the council member the most serious...
Robert Wechsler
It's nice when something you write about in a blog shows up on the front page of the New York Times the following day. Yesterday, in a post called "Privatization and Transparency," I discussed new types of privatization involving nonprofits, which raise new sorts of problems. One type of nonprofit operates government-funded facilities or programs, such as schools. These nonprofits are...
Robert Wechsler
I've written a little about ethics issues involving quasi-governmental entities and private entities doing government work (oversight, misuse, and personal financial disclosure). But there are...
Robert Wechsler
Wow! Get a Load of Those Salaries!
It's official. People get more upset over big salaries to government officials than over bribes, kickbacks, unbid contracts, and the like, which cost taxpayers far, far more.

What I mean by "official" is that the Los Angeles Times just won an Pulitzer prize for its coverage of the Bell salary scandal (see...