Ethics Ordinances, Charters or Resolutions for Municipal Officials: Crafting Codes of Ethics, Addressing Violations

Drafting and Enforcing Provisions on Conflicts of Interest, Disclosure, Impartiality, Improper Use of Position, Nepotism and More

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926
Program Materials

This CLE webinar will provide guidance to municipal attorneys for drafting and enforcing codes of ethics regulating the conduct of public officials. The panel will discuss considerations for determining whether to address ethics standards in an ordinance, charter or resolution; key provisions that should be included in codes of ethics; and legal and practical considerations and best practices when enforcing ethics ordinances, charters or resolutions against municipal officials.

Description

Codes of ethics are critical to gaining public trust and confidence in a locality’s elected officials. Areas of concern and vulnerability typically addressed in ethics codes include conflicts of interest, disclosure of certain relationships and circumstances, impartiality, improper use of a public position, dual employment, nepotism, and other areas ripe for misconduct.

Municipal attorneys guiding the development and enforcement of codes of ethics must navigate a number of legal issues, including constitutional protections, relevant state statutes, and employment and labor law considerations.

Counsel must advise municipalities on whether it is most appropriate for the code of ethics to be embodied in an ordinance, charter or resolution and ensure that all areas of potential misconduct are adequately addressed.

Municipal attorneys also play a key role in ensuring that codes of ethics are enforced fairly against public officials, which includes defining clear criteria and procedures for enforcement, providing oversight to the investigation and hearing process, and making sure that any imposed penalty is in line with the severity of the violation.

Listen as our panel discusses best practices for drafting and enforcing ethics ordinances, charters or resolutions regulating the conduct of public officials.

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Outline

  1. Determining whether to embody codes of ethics in an ordinance, charter or resolution
  2. Conduct/situations that should be addressed in codes of ethics
  3. Legal and practical considerations and best practices when enforcing ethics ordinances, charters or resolutions

Benefits

The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What types of conduct by public officials frequently raise ethical concerns?
  • At a minimum, what should the content of ethics ordinances, charters or resolutions regulating the conduct of public officials include?
  • What are some best practices to ensure that codes of ethics are fairly enforced?

Faculty

Meredith Ladd
Meredith Ladd
City Attorney
City of Carrollton
William John Kearns, Jr.
William John Kearns, Jr.

Of Counsel
Helmer Conley & Kasselman

Mr. Kearns focuses his practice on local government, municipal land use, and business clients. He is General Counsel...  |  Read More

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