Sunday, April 1, 2012

Ethics Should Be Focus Of Election Season

Read the column here.

State Integrity Investigation:

Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission (formerly the State Ethics Commission):

Georgia Alliance for Ethics Reform:

HB 1105.  This bill never made it out of the House Rules Committee:

SB 391.  This bill never made it out of the Senate Rules Committee:

HB 397.  This bill was reported favorably out of House Judiciary Committee and then passed the full House by a vote of 154 to 5, with 10 not voting and 11 excused.  It was similarly favorably reported out of Senate Judiciary Committee and then passed the full Senate by a vote of 46 to 0, with 3 not voting and 7 excused.  Since the Senate passed a substitute version of the bill, the measure went back to the House for reconsideration, where it passed by a vote of 169 to 1, with 5 not voting and 5 excused:

Even though HB 1105 and SB 391 went nowhere in the General Assembly and are dead for the session, the fight is not over.  From Debbie Dooley’s Facebook page concerning a more limited “pledge campaign” to keep the ethics reform issue alive:

All candidates have been invited to join Atlanta Tea Party Patriots, Common Cause Georgia, Georgia Conservatives in Action, Georgia Tea Party Patriots and other organizations supporting ethics reform to a press conference announcing the candidate pledge campaign.

Below is text of the letter sent to incumbent members of the Georgia General Assembly.

Dear Senator or Representative:

I know many of you are disappointed that you will not have the opportunity to vote for the ethics bills that were proposed during this session, so we are providing you the opportunity to show your constituents that you support limiting lobbyist gifts to legislators. During this session, members of the General Assembly told constituents they would vote for the ethics bill if it reached the floor. Since you were denied that opportunity, we are giving you the chance to support meaningful change in 2013 if you are re-elected.

A copy of the pledge text appears below:

Candidate Pledge:

I pledge, if elected, to co-sponsor a bill during the 2013 legislative session to limit each lobbyist gift to $100.

The proposed legislation will add the following language to a new section of the Ethics in Government Act, Chapter 5 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated:

“It shall be unlawful for a lobbyist to make a gift to a public officer where the value of the gift is more than $100.00.”

Candidate Signature:_______________________

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