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Comprehensive Ethics Reform Act

Comprehensive Ethics Reform Act

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Published by mdebonis
Comprehensive Ethics Reform Act of 2011, introduced to the D.C. Council on May 17, 2011 by Chairman Kwame R. Brown (D) and Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3)
Comprehensive Ethics Reform Act of 2011, introduced to the D.C. Council on May 17, 2011 by Chairman Kwame R. Brown (D) and Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3)

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Published by: mdebonis on May 17, 2011
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1____________________________ __________________________1Councilmember Mary M. Cheh Chairman Kwame R. Brown23A BILL4567IN THE COUNCIL OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA89101112Chairman Kwame R. Brown and Councilmember Mary M. Cheh introduced the following bill,13which was referred to the Committee on ____________________.1415To establish the Office of Government Accountability; to establish an Ethics Advisory16Committee; to amend the District of Columbia Comprehensive Merit Personnel Act to17require that new District employees receive an ethics manual and ethics training, and that18employees receive annual ethics training, and to establish monetary sanctions for19violations of standards of conduct; to amend the District of Columbia Campaign Finance20Reform and Conflict of Interest Act to require rolling publication of lobbyist registration,21to add disclosure of business relationships between lobbyists and public officials; to22prohibit the use of the official position to obtain financial gain for a not-for-profit entity23with which he or she is affiliated, to add additional financial disclosure requirements, and24to require disclosure of external fundraising activities.2526BE IT ENACTED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, That this27bill may be cited as the “Comprehensive Ethics Reform Act of 2011”.28TITLE I. OFFICE OF GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY; ETHICS ADVISORY29COMMITTEE.30Sect. 101. Short title.31This title may be cited as the “Office of Government Accountability Establishment Act of 322011”.33Sec. 102. The Office of Government Accountability.34There is established within the District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics the35Office of Government Accountability (“OGA”). The OGA shall be headed by the Director,36
2appointed by the Mayor from a list of persons recommended by the Board, by and with the1advice and consent of the Council. The Director shall serve at the pleasure of the Board and shall2receive compensation at a rate set by the Board.3Sec.103. Powers and Duties.4(a) The OGA shall have the power to investigate any matter involving lobbying, conflict5of interest, financial disclosures, and other ethical matters and standards of conduct relating to6District government employees, including the Council.7(b) The OGA shall have the power to require any person to submit in writing such reports8and answers to questions as the Director may prescribe on any matter within its jurisdiction; and9such submission shall be made within such reasonable period and under oath or otherwise as the10Director may determine.11(c) The OGA may order that testimony in any proceeding or investigation be taken by12deposition before any person who is designated by the OGA, and has the power to administer13oaths.14(d) Any violation of laws, rules, regulations, or policies within the OGA’s jurisdiction15shall be investigated by the OGA. As a result of the investigation, the OGA shall forward to the16appropriate authority a report, identifying the evidence of unlawful and unethical behavior, or the17finding of no unlawful and unethical behavior. The report shall include the following:18(1) Any factual findings;19(2) Any recommendations for corrective actions; and20(3) Any recommended penalties to be imposed by the appropriate authority.21(e) Any person who is the subject of a report shall be entitled to appeal the findings of the22OGA to the Board of Elections and Ethics, which shall determine whether the findings of fact23
3and conclusions of law are supported by substantial evidence. Any final determination of the1Board may be appealed to the District of Columbia Court of Appeals in the same manner and to2the same extent as all other final decisions of the Board.3(e) Upon request made by any public official or employee, the OGA shall provide within4a reasonable period of time an advisory opinion with respect to any specific transaction or5activity inquired of, as to whether such transaction or activity would constitute a violation of any6laws, rules, regulations, or policies over which the OGA has primary jurisdiction.7Sec. 104. Subpoena powers.8(a) The OGA may subpoena witnesses, compel the attendance and testimony of 9witnesses, and require the production of any records, including books, papers, documents, and10any other evidence relating to any matter under investigation by the OGA.11(b) The Superior Court of the District of Columbia may, upon petition by the OGA, in12case of refusal to obey a subpoena or order of the OGA issued under subsection (a) of this13section, issue an order requiring compliance therewith; and any failure to obey the order of the14Court may be punished by the Court as a contempt thereof.15Sec. 105. Rulemaking.16(a) The OGA shall, pursuant to Title I of the District of Columbia Administrative17Procedure Act, approved October 21, 1968 (82 Stat. 1204; D.C. Official Code § 2-501 et seq.),18issue rules consistent with the purposes of this act.19(b) The proposed rules shall be submitted to the Council for a 45-day period of review,20excluding Saturdays, Sundays, legal holidays, and days of Council recess. If the Council does not21approve or disapprove the proposed rules, in whole or in part, by resolution within this 45-day22review period, the proposed rules shall be deemed approved.23

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