Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Statement of Economic Interests Due - Sunday at Noon!!

Don't wait until the last minute! There's a big ethics filing deadline looming on Sunday, March 30, at noon! 

The deadline to submit the annual Statement of Economic Interests to the Ethics Commission changed from April 15 to March 30 with the passage of S2 last year. Link to the forms and information you need from the Ethics Commission here. If you have questions about completing the form and submitting it online, contact the Ethics Commission at 803.253.4192.

The Commission's User's Guide to help you complete the form is here. The law is here, and a summary of the law is here.
In municipal government, all elected officials, the city manager/administrator, the chief financial officer and the chief procurement officer must file this form by Sunday at noon. 

This issue of reporting gifts can be particularly confusing. There is conflict in state law regarding this, and the State Ethics Commission staff advises public officials and employees who file a Statement of Economic Interests to disclose anything of value received as a result of their public office or position. Link here for a detailed explanation about the right way to report gifts. 

There is a series of articles in Uptown that can give officials more background on the filing of income, benefits and property ownership.

Also, remember that the Municipal Elected Officials Institute Session B offered every February covers ethics and public responsibility. The Municipal Clerk Treasurer's Institute also includes a session on ethics in its Year 3 curriculum.

Ethics is really more than just not doing something wrong. Read this insightful column that examines what it means to be an ethical leader. Good food for thought as we complete the required ethics forms this week.

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