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Bill Summary Details

Ethics Reform (Watch)

CS/HB 1185 (Brannon) and SB 1530 (Baxley) make changes to the Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees (Code). The bills prohibit a governmental entity or person acting on its behalf, or an elected official, from authorizing the use of an elected official’s name, likeness or other symbol of office in a public service announcement during the elected official’s qualifying period prior to election or re-election, if such announcement is paid for with public funds or if the time or space for such announcement is donated by the media. The bills provide exceptions for certain charitable organizations, bona fide news events and publicly broadcasted debates. The bills modify the conflicting employment or contractual relationship prohibition in the Code to provide that a public officer or employee may not hold an employment or contractual relationship with an entity that is subject to the regulation of or is doing business with the officer or employee’s agency, rather than any agency. The bills clarify the continuing conflicts prohibition in the Code and require disclosure by an agency or solicited business entity if a public officer or employee solicits an employment or a contractual relationship that is prohibited by the Code and provide such disclosure may be investigated by the Commission on Ethics as if it was a complaint. The bills provide additional standards and disclosures for statewide elected officers, legislators, state officers and state agency employees regarding solicitation of employment while an officer or candidate for office and authorize the Commission to investigate a disclosure as if it was a complaint. The bills modify lobbyist registration and reporting requirements applicable to lobbying before the executive branch. (O’Hara)