Editor's Note: The ordinance of February 1, 1971, added Ch. 7A, redesignated Ch. 7 1/2 by the editors to maintain format. Sections 8 and 9, severability and effective date provisions, respectively, have been omitted.
Charter references: Board of Ethics, Section 6.08.
Article I In General
Article II Administration
[Ord. of 2-1-1971, § 1; Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
Pursuant to the provisions of Section 806 of the General Municipal Law, the Common Council of the City of Poughkeepsie recognizes that there are rules of ethical conduct for public officers and employees which must be observed if a high degree of moral conduct and public confidence is to be maintained in our unit of local government. It is the purpose of this chapter to promulgate these rules of ethical conduct for the officers and employees of the City of Poughkeepsie. These rules shall serve as the guide for official conduct of the officers and employees of the City of Poughkeepsie. This code shall be in addition to all other legal restrictions, standards and provisions pertaining to the conduct of City officers and employees.
[Ord. of 2-1-1971, § 2; Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
The standards, prohibited acts and procedures established herein are in addition to any prohibited acts, conflicts of interest, provisions or procedures prescribed by statute by the State of New York and also in addition to the common law rules and judicial decisions relating to the conduct of municipal officers to the extent the same are more severe in their application than this chapter.
[Ord. of 2-1-1971, § 3; Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- APPROPRIATE BODY
- The City of Poughkeepsie Board of Ethics, c/o City of Poughkeepsie Chamberlain's Office, 62 Civic Center Plaza, Poughkeepsie, New York 12601, or at the Board's option, may refer such matters to the County's Board of Ethics, c/o Commissioner of Finance, 22 Market Street, Poughkeepsie, New York, 12601.
- The City of Poughkeepsie.
- A direct or indirect pecuniary or material benefit accruing to an officer or employee, or his or her relative, whether as a result of a contract with the City or otherwise. For the purpose of this chapter, a City officer or employee shall be deemed to have an interest in the contract of:
- (a) A relative, except as to a contract of employment with the City.
- (b) A firm, partnership or association of which such officer or employee is a member or employee.
- (c) A corporation, including a nonprofit corporation, of which such officer or employee is an officer; director or employee.
- (d) A corporation of which more than 5% of the outstanding stock is owned by any such officer, employee, or his or her relative.
- A matter which appears on the agenda of the City Common Council, or on a committee thereof, on which any official action will be taken, and shall include proposed or adopted acts, local laws, ordinances or resolutions.
- MUNICIPAL OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE
- An officer or employee of the City of Poughkeepsie, whether paid or unpaid, including members of any administrative board, commission or other agency thereof and, in addition, such definition shall apply to any municipal officer's or employee's spouse, minor children and dependants; a firm, partnership or association of which such officer or employee is a member or employee is an officer, director or employee; and a corporation; any stock of which is controlled directly or indirectly by such officer or employee.
- A child, stepchild, parent, stepparent, brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, or legal guardian of any of said persons, of an officer or employee or of the spouse of the officer or employee.
- The husband or wife of an officer or employee, unless living separate and apart pursuant to a judicial order, decree or judgment of separation or a legally binding written agreement of separation in accordance with the Domestic Relations Law.
[Ord. of 2-1-1971, § 4; Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
Conflict of interest. No City officer or employee shall have any interest, financial or otherwise, direct or indirect, or engage in any business or transaction or professional activity or incur any obligation of any nature, which is in substantial conflict with the proper discharge of his/her duties in the public interest.
Disclosure of interest. Each municipal officer and employee shall, to the extent that he/she is cognizant thereof, disclose, in writing, any interest he/she may have in legislation or a decision pending before a City board or governing body. Such disclosure statement shall be filed with the City Chamberlain and with the board, agency, commission or governmental organization with whom the conflict arose, and such statement shall become a public record.
Gifts. He/she shall not directly or indirectly solicit any gifts or accept and receive any gift having a value of $100 or more, whether in the form of money, services, loan, travel, entertainment, hospitality, thing or promise, or any other form, under circumstances in which it could reasonably be inferred that the gift was intended to influence him/her, or could reasonably be expected to influence him/her in the performance of his/her official duties or was intended as a reward for any official action on his/her part.
Confidential information. He/she shall not disclose confidential information acquired by him/her in the course of his/her official duties or use such information to further his/her personal interest.
Other employment. No City officer or employee shall accept other employment which shall be in conflict with his/her official duties.
Representation before one's own agency. He/she shall not receive or enter into any agreement, express or implied, for compensation for services to be rendered in relation to any matter before any municipal agency of which he/she is an officer, member or employee or of any municipal agency over which he/she has jurisdiction or to which he/she has the power to appoint any member, officer or employee.
No former employee of the City shall personally represent any person, company, corporation or agency in a matter in which the former employee personally participated while employed by the City, for two years, if such representation would be adverse to the interest of the City. This provision shall not, however, bar the timely filing by a current or former employee of any claim, account, demand, or suit arising out of personal injury, property damage, or any benefit authorized or permitted by law, nor shall it bar the City from hiring, contracting or retaining a former employee as a consultant.
[Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
Purposes. The purpose of this section is to comply with Section 806 of Article 18 of the General Municipal Law of the State of New York to provide guidelines and criteria for financial disclosure for those persons to whom this section is applicable.
Application. This section shall apply to the Mayor, members of the Common Council, City Administrator, City Chamberlain, Corporation Counsel, Assistant Corporation Counsels, department heads, deputy department heads and division heads.
Filing. The Chamberlain's office shall be the official repository for completed annual statements of financial disclosure and shall provide a statement to that effect with the State Commission on Local Government Ethics. Any person required to file an annual statement by this section shall file the financial disclosure statement with the City Chamberlain by May 15 of each year for the preceding calendar years. The City Chamberlain shall retain each financial disclosure statement for six years.
Financial disclosure statement. The Board of Ethics shall, from time to time, adopt a disclosure form, which shall be completed and filed in accordance with this article and Section 806 of the General Municipal Law.
Failure to file the financial disclosure statement within 15 additional days after at least one reminder in writing by the City Chamberlain may be assessed a civil penalty not to exceed $100 for the first such failure and not to exceed $150 for the second such failure and not to exceed $250 for any failure to file thereafter. Exceptions and a waiver of penalties may be made under certain circumstances.
Any person who knowingly and willfully makes a false statement or gives information on such statement which such individual knows to be false shall be assessed a penalty in an amount not to exceed $1,500, and such person may be subject to disciplinary action by the appropriate body.
[Ord. of 2-1-1971, § 6; Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
In addition to any penalty contained in any other provision of law, any such municipal officer or employee who shall knowingly and intentionally violate any of the provisions of this code may be fined, suspended or removed from office of employment, as the case may be, in the manner provided by law.
[Ord. of 2-1-1971, § 6; Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
Upon adoption of this Code of Ethics, the City Administrator of the City of Poughkeepsie shall cause a copy thereof to be distributed to every municipal officer and employee of the City of Poughkeepsie. Failure to distribute any such copy or failure of any municipal officer or employee to receive such copy shall have no effect on the duty of compliance with this code and all amendments thereof nor the enforcement of provisions hereof. The City Administrator shall further cause a copy of this code to be posted conspicuously in each public building under the jurisdiction of the City, along with a copy of Article 18 of the General Municipal Law. Failure to so post shall have no effect on the duty of compliance herewith nor the enforcement provisions hereof.
[Ord. of 2-1-1971, § 7; Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010, § 1]
Within 30 days of the adoption of this code, the Chamberlain shall file a copy thereof in the office of the State Comptroller.
[Ord. No. O-10-22, 7-28-2010 § 1]
Pursuant to Article 6.08 of the Charter of the City of Poughkeepsie, any questions regarding this chapter shall be submitted to the Board of Ethics, which shall issue an advisory opinion to the Common Council. Should the Board of Ethics determine that such a request is beyond its legal purview, it shall notify the Common Council of its determination.