Governor Perdue Submits Honesty in Government Act
|Monday, January 10, 2005||
Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774
ATLANTA, GA – Governor Sonny Perdue’s ethics reform package, the Honesty in Government Act, was filed today in the Georgia House of Representatives by the Governor’s Floor Leaders. The Governor’s ethics reform package was originally filed in January 2003, but a new legislative session requires the bill to be resubmitted.
“I look forward to working with the new leadership of the House, and the leadership of the Senate, to pass the most comprehensive ethics reform legislation in the history of Georgia,” said Governor Sonny Perdue. “As public officials entrusted with serving the citizens of this state, it is time for us to write these high ethical standards into law.”
The following are major provisions of Governor Perdue’s ethics legislation:
- Revolving Door. Public officers will be prohibited from lobbying for one year after they leave office.
- Nepotism. Public Officers will be prohibited from advocating for or causing the advancement, appointment, or employment of a family member.
- Contributions to the Governor by Potential Judicial Nominees. A person may not be considered for a judicial appointment if that person made a contribution to the Governor within thirty days prior to the vacancy on the bench or after the vacancy occurs.
- Influencing the Board of Pardons and Paroles and Department of Corrections. Legislators and state elected or appointed officials will be prohibited from appearing before or communicating with these agencies advocating a decision on behalf of a person.
- Solicitation of Funds during the Legislative Session. Members of the General Assembly and public officers elected statewide will be prohibited from soliciting campaign funds or pledges for campaign contributions during the legislative session.
- Gifts. Public officials will be prohibited from accepting any gift from people with business before state government valued at more than $50.
- Financial Disclosure. Loopholes in the current financial disclosure requirements will be closed, and other provisions will be strengthened. This will shed light on the numerous financial interests the current law does not include. For example, this proposal would make a government official disclose a business owned by his or her spouse.
- Conflicts of Interest. The Ethics Commission will have jurisdiction over all conflict of interest issues, and stiffer sanctions will be available for violations.
- Filing Reports. All campaign disclosure reports and finance reports that are currently filed with the Secretary of State’s Office will be filed with the Ethics Commission.
- Public Employee Whistleblower Statute. Public employees will be protected against retaliation for reporting a violation of or noncompliance with a law, rule or regulation.
- Lobbyist Fee Disclosure. Lobbyists will be required to disclose the fees they receive for their services and the origins of these fees.