City of Englewood, NJ
Bergen County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Englewood 5-7-1988 by Ord. No. 88-04. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Pay-to-play — See Ch. 19, Art. I.
Purchasing — See Ch. 67.

§ 31-1 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
CITY AGENCIES, AUTHORITIES, BOARD OR COMMITTEES
Any public body established or created by the City of Englewood and appointed either by the City Manager, Mayor or City Council, including, specifically, the Planning Board, Board of Adjustment, Board of Health, Board of Library Trustees, Housing Authority and Board of Education.[1]
CITY OFFICIAL
Any officer or employee of the City of Englewood, whether appointed or elected, within either the classified or unclassified service as well as any person appointed or elected to a City municipal agency, authority, board, or committee, regardless of whether such person is receiving compensation from the City of Englewood, including attorneys representing such agencies, authorities, boards, or committees.
DOING BUSINESS
Any contract, agreement, sale, purchase or relationship which involves the exchange of money, goods, property or services having a value in excess of $100; provided, however, that doing business shall not include any retail customer relationship constituting less than 1% of the annual receipts of such retailer or any bank depositor relationship constituting less than 1% of the deposits of such bank.
A. 
The ownership or control of more than 10% of the profits or assets of a firm, association or partnership or more than 10% of the stock in a corporation, or the holding of any office or membership on the board of directors of any such firm, association, partnership or corporation;
B. 
An employment relationship involving the public official, or his or her spouse;
C. 
Doing business as that term is defined herein.
D. 
A joint venture or business enterprise of any kind for profit;
E. 
The ownership of any interest, of any kind, in the same parcel of real estate;
F. 
An attorney/client or other professional relationship.
PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP
A relationship with any person with whom the public official or his or her spouse has any of the following relationships by blood, adoption or marriage: spouse; parent; grandparent; child; grandchild; brother; sister; uncle; aunt; nephew; niece; cousin.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).

§ 31-2 Applicability.

This chapter shall apply to all City officials.

§ 31-3 Disclosure.

A. 
Within the time limits hereinafter set forth, all City officials shall submit, in writing, on forms to be supplied by the City Clerk and approved by the City Solicitor, the following information:
(1) 
The name and address of every person currently doing business with the City, or who has done business with the City within the past 12 months, or who such official believes will do business with the City within the coming twelve-month period with whom such official or his or her spouse have a financial interest or personal relationship.
(2) 
The location of every parcel of real property within the City of Englewood in which such official or his or her spouse has any interests in of any kind including an interest by way of ownership, occupancy, lease, option or contract to purchase.
(3) 
The name and address of any business entity located within the City of Englewood in which such official or his or her spouse has any financial interest or personal relationship.
(4) 
Whether such official or his or her spouse has had at any time received any compensation, fees, money, loan or any article or service of substantial value from any person or entity with whom the City of Englewood is doing business or has done business within the past twelve-month period or who the City official has reason to believe will do business within the coming twelve-month period.
B. 
City officials to which this chapter is applicable shall submit the information required within 30 days from the date on which this chapter shall take effect and upon the City Clerk making available forms on which the information is to be submitted. With respect to any person who shall hereafter become subject to the provisions of this chapter, such disclosure shall be made within 30 days from the date on which such person becomes subject to the provisions hereof. Following the initial submission, each person subject to the provisions hereof shall resubmit such information annually between January 1 and January 31 of each year.

§ 31-4 Acceptance of anything of value to influence public duties.

No City officials shall accept from any person, whether directly or indirectly, any gift, favor, service, employment or offers of employment or any other thing of value which such official knows or has reason to believe is offered to such official with the intent to influence such official in the performance of such official's public duties and responsibilities; provided, however, that this section shall not apply to the acceptance of contributions to the campaign of an announced candidate for elected public office.

§ 31-5 Representation, appearance or negotiation for acquisition or sale of property by City.

No City official shall represent, appear for or negotiate on behalf of any person, other than the City of Englewood, in any negotiations for the acquisition or sale by the City of Englewood of any real or personal property, or in any proceedings relative to such acquisition or sale before a condemnation commission or court; provided, however, that nothing contained in this section shall be deemed to prohibit any person from representing himself in negotiations or proceedings concerning his own interest in real property.

§ 31-6 Representation, appearance or negotiation on matters pending before City.

No City official shall represent, appear for or negotiate on behalf of any person other than the City of Englewood in connection with any cause, proceeding, application or other matter pending before any agency, authority, board or committee of the City of Englewood; provided, however, that this section shall not be deemed to prohibit any City official 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 City official.

§ 31-7 Representation on matter in which City official was involved during service or employment for City.

No City official, subsequent to the termination of such official's office or employment with the City, shall represent, appear for or negotiate on behalf of any person or party other than the City in connection with any cause, proceeding, application or other matter with respect to which such City official shall have made any investigation, rendered any ruling, given any opinion or been otherwise substantially or directly involved at any time during the course of such official's office or employment.

§ 31-8 Voting or taking any other action by City official having a financial interest or personal relationship.

No City official shall participate by voting or taking any other action on any City matter, including any matter or application pending before any City agency, authority, board, committee or other body or respecting the enactment or defeat of any resolution or ordinance, in which such official has a financial interest or personal relationship; provided, however, that nothing contained in this section shall prohibit voting or taking other action upon any matter in which any benefit or detriment which could reasonably be expected to accrue to such official, as a member of a business, profession, occupation or group, will not be greater than any such benefit or detriment which could reasonably be expected to accrue to any other member of such business, profession, occupation or group.

§ 31-9 Contracts, agreements, sales or purchases with City.

No City official shall knowingly do business with the City; provided, however, that the provisions of this section shall not apply to any purchases, contracts, agreements of sale which are made or let after public notice and competitive bidding.

§ 31-10 Conflict of interest.

No City official shall take any official action on behalf of the City for the transaction of any business involving such official or any person with whom such official has a personal relationship.

§ 31-11 Refraining from formal or informal action.

Whenever a City official is prohibited from acting on any City matter, such official shall not only refrain from taking any formal action on such matter (by way of voting, issuing orders, approvals, rejections, recommendations or similar actions) but shall also recuse himself or herself from that portion of the meeting or discussions concerning such matter and refrain from any informal action on the matter such as discussing the matter with any other City official or doing or saying anything which is designed to, or which is likely to have the affect of, influencing any action to be taken by such other City official with respect to such matter.

§ 31-12 Disclosure or use for personal gain of information not available to public.

No City official shall willfully disclose to any person, whether or not for pecuniary gain, any information not generally available to members of the public which such officer receives or acquires in the course of and by reason of such officer's official duties.

§ 31-13 Unauthorized use of City property.

Except as may be authorized by the appropriate City official or by ordinance or resolution of the City Council, no City official shall use or permit the use of any public property, vehicle, equipment, labor or service for the personal convenience or provide advantage of such official or any other person except to the extent that the same may be available to the public at large.

§ 31-14 Inducing other City officials to violate chapter.

No City official shall induce or attempt to induce any other City official to violate any provision of this chapter.

§ 31-15 Advisory opinions.

A. 
Any City official in doubt as to whether or not to disclose any financial or personal relationship or whether or not to vote or take any other action respecting a City matter or whether or not a particular act may be in violation of this chapter may seek an advisory opinion respecting same from the City Manager, who in turn may refer same to the City Solicitor for a legal opinion.
B. 
The issuance of an advisory opinion authorizing the nondisclosure of a financial interest or personal relationship or the doing of any act or the taking of any vote shall be a defense to any action for the imposition of administrative or criminal penalty under this chapter.

§ 31-16 Enforcement.

A. 
Except as hereinafter provided, enforcement of this chapter shall be the responsibility of the City Manager. Complaints of alleged violations of this chapter may be filed with the City Manager who shall make or cause to be made an investigation of the facts on which such complaint is based, and, if the City Manager finds reasonable cause to believe that there has been a violation of the provisions of this chapter:
(1) 
With respect to a City employee appointed by the City Manager and operating under the authority or supervision of the City Manager, the City Manager shall afford a hearing to the person charged, at which any other interested person shall have the right to appear and be heard. If, following such hearing, the City Manager finds that there has been a violation of this chapter, the Manager may impose such discipline or sanction as he deems appropriate, including a reprimand, suspension, demotion or removal of such City official, provided that with respect to a City department head, removal shall require the concurrence of the City Council.
(2) 
With respect to any other City official, the City Manager shall forward his preliminary findings to the City Council for such action as the Council deems appropriate.
B. 
Enforcement of this chapter with respect to and other City official not described in Subsection A(1) or Subsection A above, including the City Manager, the Mayor, any member of the City Council, the City Solicitor or any other officials appointed directly by the Mayor or the City Council shall be the responsibility of the City Council and, in any such matter, the hearings and findings described above shall be conducted by the City Council. If following such hearing the City Council finds that there has been a violation of this chapter by such City official, the Council may reprimand and, to the extent permitted by law, suspend, demote or remove such City official.

§ 31-17 Violations and penalties.

In addition to any administrative action taken with respect to § 31-14 above, any City official willfully and knowingly violating any provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to a fine not exceeding $500 for each such violation.