Township of Evesham, NJ
Burlington County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Evesham 2-7-2006 by Ord. No. 3-2-2006. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Administrative code — See Ch. 3.
Use of municipal property for political fundraising — See Ch. 17, Art. I.
Personnel policies — See Ch. 22.
Professional services contracts — See Ch. 27.

§ 8-1 Title.

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Evesham Township Code of Ethics."

§ 8-2 Findings.

The Township Council of the Township of Evesham finds and declares that:
A. 
Public office and employment are a public trust.
B. 
The vitality and stability of representative democracy depend upon the public's confidence in the integrity of its elected and appointed representatives.
C. 
Whenever the public perceives a conflict between the private interests and the public duties of a government officer or employee, that confidence is imperiled.
D. 
Governments have the 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.

§ 8-3 Purpose; statutory authority.

A. 
Purpose.
(1) 
It is the purpose of this chapter to provide a method of assuring that standards of ethical conduct and financial disclosure requirements for officers and employees of the Township of Evesham shall be clear, consistent, uniform in their application and enforceable and to provide those officers or employees with advice and information concerning possible conflicts of interest which might arise in the conduct of their public duties.
(2) 
It is the further purpose of this chapter to implement the provisions of the Local Government Ethics Law, P.L. 1991, c. 29, N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.1 et seq.
B. 
This chapter is enacted under the authority of the Local Government Ethics Law, P.L. 1991, c. 29, N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.1 et seq., and under the further authority granted to the Township of Evesham under the provisions of Titles 40 and 40A of the New Jersey Statutes.

§ 8-4 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
AGENCY
Any agency, board, governing body, including the chief executive officer, office, commission or other instrumentality within the Township of Evesham, and any independent local authority created by or appointed under the authority of the Township of Evesham which performs functions other than of a purely advisory nature.
BUSINESS ORGANIZATION
Any corporation, partnership, firm, enterprise, franchise, association, trust, sole proprietorship, union or other legal entity.
EMPLOYEE
Any person, whether compensated or not, whether part-time or full-time, employed by or serving on an agency who is not a local government officer.
INTEREST
The ownership or control of more than 10% of the profits, assets or stock of a business organization, but shall not include the control of assets in a nonunion profit entity or labor union.
MEMBER OF IMMEDIATE FAMILY
The spouse or dependent child of an officer or employee residing in the same household.
OFFICER
Any person, whether compensated or not, whether part-time or full-time, who is one of the following:
A. 
Member of the Township Council.
B. 
Township Manager.
C. 
Deputy Township Manager.
D. 
Township Clerk.
E. 
Deputy Township Clerk.
F. 
Secretary, Township Manager.
G. 
Tax Assessor.
H. 
Tax Collector.
I. 
Chief Financial Officer.
J. 
Planning Board member.
K. 
Secretary, Planning Board.
L. 
Zoning Board of Adjustment member.
M. 
Secretary, Zoning Board.
N. 
Township Attorney.
O. 
Township Engineer.
P. 
Municipal Prosecutor.
Q. 
Municipal Public Defender.
R. 
Planning and Zoning Board Attorney(s).
S. 
Township Planner.
T. 
Township Planning and Zoning Board Planner(s).
U. 
Planning Board engineer(s).
V. 
Township Auditor.
W. 
Any other person who is a managerial executive or confidential employee, as defined in Section 3 of the New Jersey Employer-Employee Relations Act, N.J.S.A. 34:13A-3, of the Township of Evesham or of an agency created under the authority of or appointed by the Township of Evesham.
X. 
Any other person determined to be an officer of the Township pursuant to the Local Government Ethics Law or by the Local Finance Board of the Department of Community Affairs.
OFFICER or EMPLOYEE
An officer or employee of the Township of Evesham or of an agency under the authority of or appointed by the Township of Evesham.

§ 8-5 Ethical standards.

Officers and employees of the Township of Evesham shall comply with the following provisions:
A. 
No officer or employee of the Township of Evesham or member of his or her immediate family shall have an interest in a business organization or engage in any business, transaction or professional activity which is in substantial conflict with the proper discharge of his or her duties in the public interest.
B. 
No officer or employee shall use or attempt to use his or her official position to secure unwarranted privileges or advantages for himself or others.
C. 
No officer or employee shall act in his or her official capacity in any matter where he, a member of his or her immediate family or any business organization in which he or she has an interest has a direct or indirect financial or personal involvement that might reasonably be expected to impair his or her objectivity or independence or judgment.
D. 
No officer or employee shall undertake any employment or service, whether compensated or not, which might reasonably be expected to prejudice his or her independence of judgment in the exercise of his or her official duties.
E. 
No officer or employee, member of his or her immediate family or any business organization in which he or she has an interest shall solicit or accept any gift, favor, political contribution, service, promise of future employment or other thing of value based upon an understanding that the gift, favor, loan, contribution, service, promise or other thing of value was given or offered for the purpose of influencing him, directly or indirectly, in the discharge of his or her official duties. This provision shall not apply to the solicitation or acceptance of contributions to the campaign of an announced candidate for elective public office, if the officer has no knowledge or reason to believe that the campaign contribution, if accepted, was given with the intent to influence the officer in the discharge of his or her official duties.
F. 
No officer or employee shall use or allow to be used his or her public office or employment or any information not generally available to the members of the public which he or she receives or acquires in the course of and by reason of his or her office of employment for the purpose of securing financial gain for himself, any member of his or her immediate family or any business organization with which he or she is associated.
G. 
No officer or employee or any business organization in which he or she has an interest shall represent any person or party, other than the Township, in connection with any cause, proceeding, application or other matter pending before any agency of the Township of Evesham. This provision shall not be deemed to prohibit an employee from representing another employee where the representation is within the context of official labor union or similar representational responsibilities, nor shall this provision be applicable to the Township Public Defender with respect to representation of defendants in the Municipal Court.
H. 
No officer shall be deemed in conflict with these provisions if, by reason of his or her participation in the enactment of any ordinance, resolution or other matter required to be voted upon or which is subject to executive approval or veto, no material or monetary gain accrues to him or her as a member of any business, profession, occupation or group to any greater extent than any gain could reasonably be expected to accrue to any other member of such business, profession, occupation or group.
I. 
No elected officer shall be prohibited from making an inquiry for information on behalf of a constituent if no fee, reward or other thing of value is promised to, given to or accepted by the officer or a member of his or her immediate family, whether directly or indirectly, in return therefor.
J. 
Nothing shall prohibit any officer or employee of the Township of Evesham or members of his or her immediate family from representing himself, herself or themselves in negotiations or proceedings concerning his, her or their own interests.
K. 
No officer or employee elected or appointed in the Township shall approve or disapprove or in any way recommend the payment of any bill, voucher or indebtedness owed or allegedly owed by the Township in which he has a direct or indirect personal, pecuniary or private interest.
L. 
No officer or employee elected or appointed in the Township shall request, use or permit the use of any public property, vehicle, equipment, labor or service for personal convenience or the private advantage of himself or any other person. This prohibition shall not be deemed to prohibit an official or employee from requesting, using or permitting the use of such public property, vehicle, equipment, material, labor or service which it is the general practice to make available to the public at large or which are provided as a matter of stated public policy for the use of officials and employees in the conduct of official business.
M. 
No candidate for office, appointment or employment, and no officer, appointee or employee in the Township of Evesham, shall directly or indirectly give or promise any person any office, position, employment, benefit or anything of value for the purpose of influencing or obtaining the political support, aid or vote of any person, under the penalty of being disqualified to hold the office or employment to which he may be or may have been elected or appointed.
N. 
No candidate for office, appointment or employment, and no officer, appointee, or employee in the Township of Evesham shall solicit other employees or appointees for purposes of political contributions, political fundraising, or other nongovernmental purposes during hours in which said employees are working or on the grounds of the Township municipal building, recreation fields, or other municipal offices or places of business.

§ 8-6 Financial disclosure statements.

A. 
Officers of the Township shall annually file a financial disclosure statement. All financial disclosure statements shall include the following information which shall specify, where applicable, the name and address of each source and the officer's job title:
(1) 
Each source of income, earned or unearned, exceeding $2,000, received by the officer or a member of his or her immediate family during the preceding calendar year. Individual client fees, customer receipts or commissions on transactions received through a business organization need not be separately reported as sources of income. If a publicly traded security is the source of income, the security need not be reported unless the local government officer or member of his or her immediate family has an interest in the business organization.
(2) 
Each source of fees and honorariums having an aggregate amount exceeding $250 from any single source for personal appearances, speeches or writings received by the local government officer or a member of his or her immediate family during the preceding calendar year.
(3) 
Each source of gifts, reimbursements or prepaid expenses having an aggregate value exceeding $400 from any single source, excluding relatives, received by the local government officer or a member of his or her immediate family during the preceding calendar year.
(4) 
The name and address of all business organizations in which the local government officer or a member of his or her immediate family had an interest during the preceding calendar year.
(5) 
The address and brief description of all real property in the state in which the local government officer or a member of his or her immediate family held an interest during the preceding calendar year.
B. 
The form of financial disclosure statement shall be that promulgated by the New Jersey Local Finance Board, in accordance with the New Jersey Local Government Ethics Law (N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.1 et seq.). The Township Clerk shall make the financial disclosure statement forms available to all local government officers, as defined in the Local Government Ethics Law, required to file them.
C. 
The original statement shall be filed with the Township Clerk within 90 days after the effective date of this chapter or the effective date of the New Jersey Local Government Ethics Law, whichever shall first occur. All subsequent statements shall be filed on or before April 30 of each year. A copy of the statement shall be filed with the Township Clerk.
D. 
All financial disclosure statements filed shall be public records.

§ 8-7 Advisory opinions.

A local government officer or employee may request and obtain from the Local Finance Board an advisory opinion as to whether any proposed activity or conduct would in its opinion constitute a violation of the provisions of this chapter or the Local Government Ethics Law. Advisory opinions of the Board shall not be made public, except when the Board, by the vote of 2/3 of all of its members, directs that the opinion be made public. Public advisory opinions shall not disclose the name of the local government officer or employee unless the Board in directing that the opinion be made public so determines.

§ 8-8 Complaints.

Signed written complaints alleging violation of this chapter or the Local Government Ethics Law shall be forwarded to the Local Finance Board for processing in accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 40A:22.9 and related sections of the Local Government Ethics Law.

§ 8-9 Enforcement; violations and penalties.

A. 
An appointed officer or employee of the Township of Evesham found guilty by the Local Finance Board of the violation of any provision of this chapter or of any code of ethics in effect pursuant to this chapter shall be fined not less than $100 nor more than $500, which penalty may be collected in a summary proceeding pursuant to the Penalty Enforcement Law, N.J.S.A. 2A:58-1. The Local Finance Board shall report its findings to the office or agency having the power of removal or discipline of the appointed officer or employee and may recommend that further disciplinary action be taken.
B. 
An elected officer or employee of the Township of Evesham found guilty by the Local Finance Board of the violation of any provision of this chapter or of any code of ethics in effect pursuant to this chapter shall be fined not less than $100 nor more than $500, which penalty may be collected in a summary proceeding pursuant to the Penalty Enforcement Law (N.J.S.A. 2A:58-10).
C. 
The finding by the Local Finance Board that an appointed officer or employee of the Township of Evesham is guilty of the violation of the provisions of this chapter or of any code of ethics in effect pursuant to this chapter shall be sufficient cause for his or her removal, suspension, demotion or other disciplinary action by the officer or agency having the power of removal or discipline. When a person who is in the career service is found to have violated the provisions of this chapter or any code of ethics in effect pursuant to this chapter, the procedure leading to removal, suspension, demotion or other disciplinary action shall be governed by any applicable procedures of Title 11 A of the New Jersey Statutes and the rules promulgated pursuant thereof.