Editorial, submitted by Conrad Doyle
AN ORDINANCE AMENDING ORDINANCE NOS. 2008-06 & 2005-12 RELATING TO THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A CODE OF ETHICS FOR COUNTY OFFICIALS AND EMPLOYEES IN MEADE COUNTY, KENTUCKY SET FORTH IN KRS 65.003(1) WHEREAS, the Meade County Fiscal Court has determined it to be the best interest of MEADE COUNTY, KENTUCKY to amend Ordinance Nos. 2008-06 & 2005-12, AN ORDNANCE RELATING TO THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A CODE OF ETHICS FOR COUNTY OFFICIALS AND EMPLOYEES MEADE COUNTY, KENTUCKY SET FORTH IN IQS 65.0030 NOW THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED BY THE FISCAL COURT OF THE COUTY OF MEADE, COMMONWEALTH OF KENTUCKY as follows: Ordinance 2008-06 & 2005-12 is amended to read as follows, with additions being indicated by underline " ' and deletions being indicated by strike through " WHEREAS, the Meade County Fiscal Court has the authority pursuant to KRS Chapter 65, to enact an ordinance establishing a code of ethics to guide the conduct of elected and appointed officers and employees of Meade County, including members of the Fiscal Court, the County Attorney, Court Clerk, Jailer, Coroner, Surveyor, Constable and the Sheriff, and other subdivisions of local government within the geographical boundaries of Meade County, Kentucky; and, WHEREAS, public office and employment are a public trust and government has a duty both to provide their citizens with standards by which they may determine whether public duties are being faithfully performed, and to apprise their officers and employees of the behavior which is expected of them while conducting their public duties; and, WHEREAS, it is the purpose of this ordinance to provide a method of assuring that standards of ethical conduct for local government officers and employees shall be clear, consistent, and unif01m in their application, and to provide local officers and employees with advice and infonnation concerning possible conflicts of interest which might arise in the conduct of their public duties. SPACE CONTRAINTS REQUIRE PORTIONS OF THE DOCUMENT TO BE LEFT OUT OF THIS INFORMATIONAL COLUMN. (the full document can be found online) STANDARDS OF CONDUCT: No county or local government officer or employee shall use, or allow to be used, his public office or employment, or any information, not generally available to the members of the public, which he receives or acquires in the course of and by reason of his office or employment, for the purpose of securing financial gain for himself, any member of his immediate family, or any business organization with which he is associated except under the "rule of necessity" 1. FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE The following individuals shall be required to file a financial disclosure statement: Elected officers; Candidates for county or local government officer; Officers and employees with procurement authority exceeding TEN THOUSAND ($10,000.00) DOLLARS per purchase. The financial disclosure statement should include the following information: Name of filer; Current business address, business telephone number and home address of filer; Title of filer's public office or office sought; Occupation of filer; Positions held by the filer in any business organization or non-profit entity from which the filer received compensation in excess of TWENTY-FIVE THOUSAND ($25,000.00) DOLLARS during the proceeding calendar year, and the name, address, and telephone number of the business organization or non-profit entity; Name, address, and telephone number of each source of income from within the Commonwealth of Kentucky of the filer which exceeded TWENTY-FIVE THOUSAND ($25,000.00) DOLLARS during the proceeding calendar year; Name, address and telephone number of each business organization located within the Commonwealth in which the filer had an interest, (including partnership, stock, bond, indebtedness, or other financial interest) of TWENTY- FIVE THOUSAND ($25,000.00) DOLLARS or more at fair market value during the proceeding calendar year. The filer must disclose such interests based on the value of the business organization, regardless of the income or profitability of the business organization. c. The financial disclosure statement shall be on a fom provided by the local ethics commission. The financial disclosure statement shall be filed annually by officers and employees no later than February I. Candidates shall be required to file the statement no later than twenty-one (21) days after the filing date or the date of nomination. Newly-appointed officers and employees should be required to file their initial statement no later than twenty-one (21) days after the date of appointment. D. The financial disclosure statement shall be filed with the local ethics commission by all filers who are subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission. Failure to do so may result in a fine not exceeding FIVE HUNDRED ($500.00)DOLLARS for failure to file by February 1, and a fine not exceeding ONE HUNDRED ($100.00) DOLLARS for each subsequent failure to file by the first of each month thereafter. 111. COUNTY ETHICS COMMISSION A. The county ethics commission shall consist of seven (7) citizen members. The commission shall select one member as chairperson. The members shall be appointed by the County Judge/Executive with approval of fiscal court. Membership on the county ethics commission shall follow the following protocol: one member shall come from each magisterial district and one at large member shall be nominated by the Judge Executive. In the event a vacancy occurs, the magistrate from the district where the vacancy exists shall recommend a selection to the Judge-Executive for nomination. Members shall receive no compensation but may be reimbursed all necessary expenses. The terms of members shall be for four (4) years and shall be staggered with one member appointed initially for four (4) years, one member for three (3) years, and one member for two (2) years and thereafter all appointments shall be for four (4) years. PENALTIES Except when another penalty is specifically set forth in this ordinance, any officer or employee of the county or any county agency who is found by the Board of Ethics to have violated any provision of this ordinance shall be deemed guilty of a civil offense (039 and may be subject to a civil fine imposed by the Board of Ethics not to exceed ONE THOUSAND ($1,000.00) DOLLARS, which may be recovered by the county in a civil action in the nature of a debt if the offender fails to pay the penalty within a prescribed period of time. This ordinance having been read for the first time in open session of the Meade County Fiscal Court on, ; Published in the Meade County Messenger on Wednesday, ; will be given final reading on ; said ordinance shall be in full force and effect upon signature, recordation and publication.