City of Troy, NY
Rensselaer County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Troy 5-7-1998 by L.L. No. 4-1998 (Art. XXXIV of Sub-Part C of the 1973 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]

§ 43-1 Code of Ethics for officers and employees.

A. 
General prohibition. An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not use his or her official position or office, or take or fail to take any action, or use City employees or City property in a manner in which he or she knows will result in a financial benefit of any kind for any of the following:
(1) 
The officer or employee;
(2) 
His or her outside employer or business;
(3) 
A member of his or her family or household;
(4) 
A customer or client;
(5) 
A business, firm, company, corporation, partnership, unincorporated association or other entity in which he or she has a proprietary interest in excess of 5% ownership; or
(6) 
A person from whom the officer or employee has received election campaign contributions of more than $1,000 in the aggregate during the past 12 months.
B. 
Recusal. An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall promptly recuse himself or herself from acting on a matter before the City when acting on the matter, or failing to act on the matter, may financially benefit any of the persons listed in Subsection A of this section.
C. 
Gifts. An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not solicit anything of material value from any person who has received or sought a financial benefit from the municipality, nor accept anything of value from any person the officer or employee knows or has reason to know is seeking or has received or sought a financial benefit from the municipality.
D. 
Representation. An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not represent any other person in any matter that person has before the City nor represent any other person in any matter against the interests of the City.
E. 
Appearances. An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not appear before any agency of the City government, except on his or her own behalf or in connection with his or her City office or employment or on behalf of the City.
F. 
Prohibition on conducting business with the City. An officer or employee or a business, firm, corporation, partnership, company or entity of any kind, in which the officer or employee holds an ownership or equity interest in excess of 5% of the outstanding stock or total value of such entity, shall be prohibited from conducting any business with the City involving the provision of goods or services of any kind in which the City would incur an obligation to provide remuneration or consideration of any kind to such officer or employee or a business, firm, corporation, partnership, company or entity.
G. 
Confidential information. Officers and employees of the City of Troy and former officers and employees of the City shall not disclose any confidential information or use it to further anyone's personal or business interests.
H. 
Right to engage in political activity; prohibition on coercion; prohibition on political solicitation in a City workplace. Unless otherwise prohibited by law, officers and employees shall not be denied the right to support or refuse to support a political party or committee, or a candidate for public office. Officers or employees shall not coerce, or request or authorize another to coerce, any officer or employee to support or refuse to support a political party or committee, or a candidate for public office. Officers or employees shall not make use of a City workplace to request, or authorize another to use a City workplace to request, that any officer or employee participate in an election campaign or contribute to a political party or committee.
I. 
Revolving door. An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not appear or practice before the City government, except on his or her own behalf, or receive compensation for any services rendered in relation to any case, proceeding, application, or transaction before the City government, for a period of one year after the termination of his or her service or employment with the City; however, the bar shall be permanent as to specific cases, proceedings, applications or transactions in which the officer or employee was directly concerned and personally participated during service with the City or were under the officer or employee's active consideration.
J. 
Avoidance of conflicts. Officers and employees of the City of Troy shall not knowingly acquire, solicit, negotiate for, or accept any interest, employment, or other thing of value which would put them in violation of this Code of Ethics.
K. 
Inducement of others. An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not induce or aid another officer or employee of the City to violate any of the provisions of this Code of Ethics.
L. 
Transactional disclosure. Whenever an officer or employee is required to recuse himself or herself under this Code of Ethics, he or she:
(1) 
Shall promptly inform his or her supervisor, if any; and
(2) 
Shall promptly file with the City Clerk a signed statement, in a format to be prescribed by the City Ethics Commission, disclosing the nature and extent of the prohibited actions or, if a member of a board, shall state that information upon the public record of the board; and
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
(3) 
Shall immediately refrain from participating further in the matter.
M. 
City employees. No officer or employee shall direct or cause any officer or employee to do or perform any service or work outside of public work or employment, or accept any such service or work, nor shall any officer or employee of the City offer to perform any such service or work for such officer or employee. Officers and employees may voluntarily perform such service or work outside of the hours during which they are assigned to perform duties for the City.
N. 
City property. No officer or employee shall use or request or permit the use of City-owned property; including, but not limited to, vehicles, equipment, materials or supplies, for personal convenience, use or profit; except when such goods or services are available to the public generally or are used in the conduct of official business by the officer or employee in compliance with City policy for such use.[1]
[1]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 83, Property, City-Owned.

§ 43-2 Exclusions.

The provisions of § 43-1B of this chapter shall not prohibit nor require recusal as a result of:
A. 
An action specifically authorized by statute, rule, or regulation of the State of New York or of the United States.
B. 
A ministerial act.
C. 
Gifts:
(1) 
Received by the officer or employee from his or her parent, spouse, child or sibling; or
(2) 
Having an aggregate value of $75 or less during any twelve-month period, unless such gifts are otherwise prohibited in a written directive promulgated by the Mayor or a department head, with such directive issued in writing, signed by the issuing officer, with a copy of such directive addressed and delivered to each employee to whom such prohibition shall apply; or
[Amended 10-2-2003 by L.L. No. 4-2003]
(3) 
Accepted on behalf of the City and transferred to the City; or
(4) 
Of refreshments and meals received at a widely attended gathering, as defined by rules of the Commission; or
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
(5) 
Motivated by a preexisting personal relationship, as defined by rule of the Commission.
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
D. 
Gifts or benefits having a value of $75 or less that are received by an officer or employee of the City of Troy listed in § 11 of the Domestic Relations Law for the solemnization of a marriage by that officer or employee at a place other than his or her normal place of business or at a time other than his or her normal hours of business.
[Amended 10-2-2003 by L.L. No. 4-2003]
E. 
Nonmonetary awards from charitable organizations.
F. 
Receipt of City services or benefits, or use of City facilities, that are generally available on the same terms and conditions to residents or a class of residents in the municipality.
G. 
Representation of constituents by elected officials without compensation in matters of public advocacy.
H. 
Officers or employees of the City appearing or practicing before the City government or receiving compensation for working on a matter before the City government after termination of their service or employment with the City government where they performed only ministerial acts while working for the City.

§ 43-3 Inducing others to violate code prohibited.

[Amended 4-3-2008 by Ord. No. 12]
No person, whether or not a municipal officer or employee, shall induce or attempt to induce an officer or employee of the City of Troy to violate any of the provisions of § 43-1 of this chapter.

§ 43-3.1 Retaliatory actions prohibited.

[Added 4-3-2008 by Ord. No. 12]
A. 
No elected City official, public officer, employee, or board member shall retaliate against any other elected City official, public officer, employee, or board member who, while acting as a complainant, or on behalf of a complainant, does any of the following:
(1) 
Submits a complaint to the City Ethics Commission and the Troy City Council; or
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
(2) 
Reports or is about to report, orally or in writing, any information to the City Council, or other public enforcement official, of the alleged wrongdoing, misconduct, malfeasance, misfeasance, waste, inefficiency, corruption, criminal activity, inappropriate behavior, or conflicts of interest to any federal, state, county or City regulatory or investigative authority, as permitted by federal, state, county or City law or ordinance; or
(3) 
Provides information, participates in the investigation, or acts as a witness to ethics or to a federal, state, county or City investigative authority, when requested by such regulatory or investigative authority; or
(4) 
Acts or refuses to act as required by this chapter and/or Article 18 of the New York State General Municipal Law (Conflicts of Interest of Municipal Officers and Employees).
B. 
The protections of this chapter shall not apply to any City employee who knowingly files a false complaint or makes a false statement with respect to an alleged violation of this chapter.
C. 
Any elected City official, public officer, employee, or board member who violates any provision of this section has committed a violation of this section. Determinations as to violations of this section shall be made by the Ethics Commission in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 43 of the City of Troy Code of Ordinances.
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
D. 
If the Ethics Commission determines after inquiry that there has been a violation of this section, it may order any of the following remedies/penalties:
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
(1) 
Those penalties provided by § C-40, Penalties for violation of ordinances;
(2) 
An order to the elected City official, public officer, employee, or board member directing said person to cease and desist the behavior which rises to the level of a violation of this section;
(3) 
The reinstatement of any affected employee to the same position held before the retaliatory action, or to an equivalent position;
(4) 
The reinstatement of full fringe benefits or seniority rights which may have been affected by the retaliatory action;
(5) 
The compensation for lost wages, benefits or other remuneration; and
(6) 
The payment by the City of Troy of reasonable costs, disbursements and attorney's fees.

§ 43-4 Definitions.

Unless otherwise stated or unless the context otherwise requires, when used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
APPEAR and APPEAR BEFORE
Communicating in any form, including, without limitation, personally, through another person, by letter, or by telephone.
CITY CLERK
The City Clerk of the City of Troy.
CITY GOVERNMENT
Includes all departments, offices, bureaus and instrumentalities of the government of the City of Troy, including the City Council.
CORPORATION COUNSEL
The Corporation Counsel of the City of Troy.
A. 
Any person to whom an officer or employee of the City of Troy has supplied goods or services during the previous 24 months having, in the aggregate a value greater than $1,000; or
B. 
Any person to whom a officer's or employee's outside employer or business has supplied goods or services during the previous 24 months having, in the aggregate, a value greater than $1,000 but only if the officer or employee knows or has reason to know the outside employer or business supplied the goods or services.
FAMILY
Any person related to an officer or employee by blood or marriage or other legally recognized familial relationship.
GIFT and FINANCIAL BENEFIT
Includes anything of value including, but not limited to, money, services, licenses, permits, contracts, authorizations, loans, travel, entertainment, hospitality, or any promise thereof, or any other gratuity or promise thereof. A financial transaction may be a financial benefit but shall not be a gift unless it is on terms not available to the general public. "Gift" and "financial benefit" do not include campaign contributions authorized by law.
MINISTERIAL ACT
An action performed in a prescribed manner without the exercise of substantial judgment or discretion as to the propriety of the act.
OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF THE CITY OF TROY
An officer or employee of the City of Troy, whether paid or unpaid, and includes, without limitation, all members of any decisionmaking office, board, body, council, commission, agency, department, district, administration, division, bureau, or committee of the City of Troy. "Officer or employee of the City of Troy" also includes the officers and employees of all agencies and instrumentalities of the City of Troy. For the purposes of the requirement of this chapter related to the filing of annual statements by officers and employees of the City of Troy, the term "officer and employee of the City of Troy" shall include the Chair of any political party or committee organized for the purpose of nominating candidates for elective office in the government of the City of Troy. "Officer or employee of the City of Troy" shall not include:
A. 
A judge, justice, officer, or employee of the Unified Court System;
B. 
A volunteer firefighter or civil defense volunteer, except a Fire Chief or Assistant Fire Chief; or
C. 
A member of an advisory board of the City if, but only if, the advisory board has no authority to implement its recommendations or to act on behalf of the City or to restrict the authority of the City to act. No entity established pursuant to this chapter shall be deemed an advisory board for purposes of this subsection.
A. 
Any activity, other than service to the City of Troy, from which the officer or employee of the City of Troy receives compensation for services rendered or goods sold or produced;
B. 
Any entity, other than the City of Troy, of which the officer or employee of the City of Troy is a member, officer, or employee and from which he or she receives compensation for services rendered or goods sold or produced; or
C. 
Any entity in which an officer or employee of the City of Troy has an ownership interest, except a corporation of which the officer or employee of the City of Troy owns less than 5% of the outstanding stock. For purposes of this definition, "compensation" shall not include reimbursement for necessary expenses, including travel expenses.
PERSON
Includes both individuals and entities.
POLITICAL PARTY OFFICER
Any person serving or acting as an officer as currently defined and listed by the County Board of Election filing for the political party.
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
SUBORDINATE OF AN OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF THE CITY OF TROY
Another officer or employee of the City of Troy over whose activities he or she has direction, supervision, or control.

§ 43-5 Appearances by outside employers and businesses of officers and employees of the City of Troy.

A. 
Except as provided in § 43-3 of this chapter, the outside employer or business of an officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not appear before the particular agency in which such officer or employee serves or by which he or she is employed.
B. 
Except as provided in § 43-3 of this chapter, the outside employer or business of an officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not appear before any other agency of City government if such officer or employee has the authority to appoint any officer, employee, or member of the agency or to review, approve, audit, or authorize any budget, bill, payment, or claim of the agency.
C. 
Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the outside employer or business of an officer or employee of the City of Troy from:
(1) 
Appearing on its own behalf, or on behalf of the City of Troy, before a municipal agency;
(2) 
Seeking or obtaining a ministerial act; or
(3) 
Receiving a City service or benefit, or using a City facility, which is generally available to the public.

§ 43-6 Political party officers.

A. 
No political party officer or family member thereof, nor any partnership, unincorporated association in which he or she is a member or employee or in which he or she has a proprietary interest, nor any business or professional corporation of which he or she is an officer, director or legally or beneficially owns or controls more than 5% of the outstanding stock, shall have any business dealings with the City of Troy, directly or indirectly, or any of its boards, commissions, agencies, authorities or districts.
B. 
No political party officer shall be employed by the City of Troy. Any offer of employment with the City which is tendered to a person who is a political party officer shall be made in writing and shall contain a requirement that resignation from such political party office is a condition precedent to the effectiveness of such offer of employment. Prior to commencement of such employment, the appointing authority must file a copy of such offer of employment together with a copy of such letter of resignation from party office with the City Clerk.

§ 43-7 Annual disclosure.

A. 
Officers and employees of the City of Tray required to file. The following classes of officers and employees of the City of Troy shall be required to file a signed annual disclosure statement:
(1) 
Officers and employees who are elected; those appointed by them to serve at their pleasure; those appointed by such appointees to serve at their pleasure; and those for whom certificates of nomination to City-elected office have been filed with the County Board of Elections;
(2) 
The heads of any agency, department, division, council, board, commission, bureau or other instrumentality of the City government and their deputies and other persons authorized to act on their behalf;
(3) 
Officers and employees who hold policymaking positions, including members of the various boards and commissions of the City;
(4) 
Officers and employees whose job descriptions or actual duties involve the negotiation, authorization, or approval of:
(a) 
Contracts, leases, franchises, revocable consents, concessions, variances, special permits, or licenses;
(b) 
The purchase, sale, rental, or lease of real property, personal property, or services, or a contract therefor;
(c) 
The obtaining of grants of money or loans; or
(d) 
The adoption or repeal of any rule or regulation having the force and effect of law.
(5) 
The Chair, or person performing the duties of the Chair of any political party or committee organized for the purpose of nominating candidates for elective office in the government of the City of Troy.
B. 
Time and place for filing. Annual disclosure statements shall be filed with the City's Ethics Commission:
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
(1) 
Within 120 days after the effective date of this chapter;
(2) 
Within 30 days after becoming subject to the requirements of Subsection A of this section;
(3) 
No later than May 15 of each year thereafter; and
(4) 
Within seven days of the filing of a certificate of nomination pursuant to the Election Law for a candidate for City elective office.
C. 
Changes in disclosed information. Within 30 days after a material change in the information contained in his or her most recently filed annual disclosure statement, an officer or employee of the City of Troy shall file a signed amendment to the statement indicating the change.
D. 
Contents of annual disclosure statement. The annual disclosure statement shall consist of the form found in Appendix A of this chapter entitled "Annual Disclosure Statement-City of Troy, New York"[1] and shall disclose:
(1) 
The location of any real property within the City or within one mile of the boundary of the City, in which the officer or employee, or his or her spouse, or other member of his or her immediate family or household has a financial interest.
(2) 
With respect to each outside employer or business of the officer or employee of the City of Troy:
(a) 
Its name (if any);
(b) 
The nature of its business;
(c) 
Whether it is self employment, a sole proprietorship, or an entity and, if an entity, what type of entity; and
(d) 
The officer's or employee's relationship to it, such as owner, partner, officer, director, member, employee, or shareholder.
(3) 
With respect to each outside employer or business of the officer's or employee's spouse, the information required by Subsection D(2) of this section.
(4) 
With respect to each outside business of the officer or employee or their spouse, the percentage of their equity interest or ownership of such outside business to the extent such interest or ownership exceeds 5% of the outstanding interest or ownership in the business and the information required by Subsection D(2) of this section.
[1]:
Editor's Note: The disclosure statement is on file in the office of the City Clerk.
E. 
Good faith efforts. Failure to disclose the information required by Subsection D of this section with respect to an officer's or employee's spouse or other relative shall not constitute a violation of such subsection if the officer or employee has made a good faith effort to obtain the information and if he or she also sets forth those efforts in his or her disclosure statement.

§ 43-8 Applicant disclosure.

A. 
Where a person requests the City or a City officer or employee to take or fail to take any action (other than a ministerial act) that he or she knows may result in a financial benefit to any officer or employee of the City of Troy or one of the other persons listed in § 43-1A of this chapter, the requestor shall disclose the names of any such persons, to the extent known to the requestor at the time of the request.
B. 
If the request is made in writing, the disclosure shall accompany the request. If the request is oral and made at a meeting of a public body, the disclosure shall be set forth in the public record of the body. If the request is oral and not made at a meeting of a public body, the disclosure shall be set forth in a writing filed with the City Clerk.

§ 43-9 Void contracts.

Any contract or agreement entered into by or with the City which results in or from a violation of any provision of § 43-1 or 43-5 of this chapter shall be void unless ratified by resolution of the City Council. Such ratification shall not affect the imposition of any criminal or civil penalties pursuant any other provision of law.

§ 43-10 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
Disciplinary action. Any officer or employee of the City of Troy who engages in any action that violates any provision of this chapter may be warned, reprimanded, suspended or removed from office or employment, or be subject to any other sanction authorized by law or collective bargaining agreement, by the appointing authority or person or body authorized by law to impose such sanctions. A waning, reprimand, suspension, removal, or other authorized sanction may be imposed in addition to any other penalty contained in this chapter or in any other provision of law.
B. 
Civil fine. Any officer or employee of the City of Troy who violates any provision of this chapter may be subject to a civil fine, in a reasonable amount, of up to $1,000 for each violation. A civil fine may be imposed in addition to any other penalty contained in any other provision of law or in this chapter.
C. 
Misdemeanor. Any person, whether or not an officer or employee of the City of Troy, who intentionally or knowingly violates any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, if a municipal officer or employee, shall forfeit his or her municipal office or employment; provided, however, that a criminal violation of § 43-7 of this chapter shall also require proof of intent to deceive.
D. 
Failure to comply with a subpoena by the Ethics Commission shall result in a fine of $1,000 for the first day in violation. Thereafter and every subsequent day shall incur a fine of $100.
[Added 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
E. 
Any department head, mayoral or City Council appointee who has been indicted for any felony will be suspended without pay pending the final outcome of the criminal proceeding.
[Added 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]

§ 43-11 Application to contracts; use of public services; vicarious liability.

A. 
No person, whether or not an officer or employee of the City of Troy, shall enter into a contract in violation of a bar imposed pursuant to any provision of this chapter.
B. 
Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit any person from receiving a service or benefit, or from using a facility, which is generally available to the public.
C. 
Under this section, a corporation, partnership, or other entity shall not be held vicariously liable for the actions of an employee. A corporation, partnership, or other entity shall not be debarred because of the actions of an employee unless the employee acted in the execution of company direction, policy or custom. A store, region, division, or other unit of an entity shall not be debarred because of the actions of an employee of that unit unless the employee acted at the direction, or with the actual knowledge or approval, of the manager of the unit.

§ 43-12 Designation of officers and employees required to file annual disclosure statements.

Within 90 days after the effective date of this chapter, and during the month of March each year thereafter, the Mayor shall:
A. 
Cause to be filed with the City's Ethics Commission a list of the names and offices or positions of all officers and employees of the City required to file annual disclosure statements pursuant to § 43-7 of this chapter; and
[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
B. 
Notify all such officers and employees of their obligation to file an annual disclosure statement.

§ 43-13 Maintenance of disclosure statements.

[Amended 4-8-1999 by L.L. No. 4-1999; 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
The City Clerk shall transmit promptly to the City Ethics Commission each transactional and applicant disclosure statement filed with the Clerk pursuant to §§ 43-1K and 43-7B of this chapter.
B. 
The Ethics Commission shall index and maintain on file for at least seven years all transactional, applicant, and annual disclosure statements filed with the Ethics Commission.

§ 43-14 Ethics Commission established.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
The Ethics Commission for the City of Troy, which shall consist of seven members, is hereby established. Wherever in City Code an "Ethics Board" or "Board of Ethics" had been referenced shall heretofore refer to the Ethics Commission.

§ 43-15 Qualifications of members of Ethics Commission.

[Amended 4-8-1999 by L.L. No. 4-1999; 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
No Ethics Commission member shall hold office in a political party or be employed or act as a lobbyist or hold elective office in the City.
B. 
Ethics Commission members must be residents of the City of Troy throughout their tenure as Commission members; provided, however, that a member appointed because he or she is an officer or employee of the City shall not be subject to this requirement.

§ 43-16 Appointment of Ethics Commission members; term of office.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
Within 60 days after the effective date of this chapter, and no earlier than January 1 of each year thereafter, the Mayor, City Council majority, and City Council minority shall appoint the members of the Ethics Commission. The Mayor shall appoint three members, the City Council majority shall appoint two members, and the City Council minority shall appoint two members.
B. 
The term of office of Ethics Commission members shall be three years and shall run from January 1 through December 31, except that, of the members first appointed, two members shall serve until December 31 of the year in which the Ethics Commission is established, two shall serve until the second December 31, and three shall serve until the third December 31; with one of the Mayor’s initial appointments to serve one year, one to serve two years and one to serve three years; with one of the Council minority’s initial appointments to serve one year and one to serve three years; with one of the Council majority’s initial appointments to serve two years and one to serve three years.
[Amended 3-1-2012 by Ord. No. 1]
C. 
An Ethics Commission member shall serve until his or her successor has been appointed. Consecutive service on an Ethics Commission shall not exceed one full term.

§ 43-17 Ethics Commission vacancies.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
When a vacancy occurs in the membership of the Ethics Commission, the vacancy shall, within 60 days, be filled for the unexpired portion of the term in the same manner as the original appointment; provided, however, that vacancies that exist on or occur on or after November 1 of 1999, and every fourth year thereafter, may not be filled until the next succeeding January 1. Any person appointed to fill a vacancy on the Ethics Commission shall meet the qualifications set forth in § 43-15 of this chapter.

§ 43-18 Removal of Ethics Commission members.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
An Ethics Commission member may be removed from office by the Mayor with the advise and consent of the City Council, after written notice and opportunity for reply. Grounds for removal shall be failure to meet the qualifications set forth in § 43-15 of this chapter, substantial neglect of duties of office, or violation of this chapter.

§ 43-19 Ethics Commission meetings.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
At its first meeting each year, the Ethics Commission shall elect a Chair and Secretary from among its members.
B. 
The Ethics Commission shall meet quarterly to review all recent action taken, and meeting minutes will be recorded by the Secretary. A simple majority of the Ethics Commission shall be required for the Ethics Commission to meet. The Chair or a simple majority of the Ethics Commission may call a meeting of the Ethics Commission outside of the required quarterly meeting.
C. 
A simple majority of the Ethics Commission shall be required to take any action.

§ 43-20 Jurisdiction, powers and duties of Ethics Commission.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
The Ethics Commission may only act with respect to officers and employees of the City of Troy subject to the Ethics Commission's jurisdiction.
B. 
The termination of a municipal officer's or employee's term of office or employment with the City shall not affect the jurisdiction of the Ethics Commission with respect to the requirements imposed by this chapter or by the Act,[1] if any, on a former officer or employee. However, in no event shall the Ethics Commission have jurisdiction over a former officer or employee where a hearing has not been commenced pursuant to the provisions of this chapter within one year of the termination of a City officer's or employee's term of office or employment with the City.
[1]:
Editor's Note: "The Act" refers to § 800 et seq. of the General Municipal Law.
C. 
The City Ethics Commission shall have the following powers and duties:
(1) 
To prescribe and promulgate rules and regulations by resolution of the Commission, governing its own internal organization and procedures in a manner consistent with this and to cause to be filed with the office of the City Clerk and the office of the Corporation Counsel a copy of those rules and regulations and any amendments thereto;
(2) 
To request that the Mayor appoint such staff as is necessary to carry out its duties under this chapter, and to delegate authority to such staff to act in the name of the Ethics Commission between meetings of the Ethics Commission, provided that the delegation is in writing and the specific powers to be delegated are enumerated, and further provided that the Ethics Commission shall not delegate the power to conduct hearings, determine violations, recommend disciplinary action, impose any civil fine, refer any matter to a prosecutor, or render any advisory opinion;
(3) 
To review, index, and maintain on file lists of officers and employees, transactional disclosure statements, and annual disclosure statements filed with the Ethics Commission, pursuant to this chapter;
(4) 
To review, index, maintain on file, and dispose of sworn complaints and to make notifications and conduct inquiries pursuant to this chapter;
(5) 
To conduct hearings, recommend disciplinary action, assess penalties, make referrals, and initiate appropriate actions and proceedings pursuant to this chapter, and includes full power of subpoena as governed by all applicable laws and regulations;
(6) 
To render, index, and maintain on file advisory opinions pursuant to this chapter;
(7) 
To provide for training, assistance, and education to officers and employees pursuant to this chapter;
(8) 
To make recommendations to the Mayor and the City Council for changes to this chapter; and
(9) 
To provide for public inspection of certain records pursuant to this chapter.

§ 43-21 Review of lists and disclosure statements.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
The Ethics Commission shall review:
(1) 
The lists of officers and employees, prepared pursuant to this chapter, to determine whether the lists are complete and accurate. The Ethics Commission shall add the name of any other officer or employee who the Ethics Commission determines should appear on the list.
(2) 
All annual disclosure statements to determine whether any person required to file such a statement has failed to file it, has filed a deficient statement, or has filed a statement that reveals a possible or potential violation of this chapter or the local Ethics Act, if any.
(3) 
All transactional disclosure statements.
B. 
If the Ethics Commission determines that an annual disclosure statement or a transactional disclosure statement is deficient or reveals a possible or potential violation of this chapter, the Ethics Commission shall notify the person in writing, state the deficiency or possible or potential violation, provide the person with a thirty-day period to cure the deficiency, and advise the person of the penalties for failure to comply with this chapter. Such notice shall be confidential to the extent permitted by the Public Officers Law. If the person fails to cure the deficiency within the specified time period, the Commission shall send a notice of delinquency to the reporting person and either:
(1) 
In the case of the Mayor, to the City Council President; or
(2) 
In the case of the City Council President, to the Mayor; or
(3) 
In the case of a member of the City Council, or other elected officials of the City, to the City Council President; or
(4) 
For all other municipal officers and employees, to the appointing authority for such person.

§ 43-22 Inquiries.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
Upon receipt of a sworn complaint by any person alleging a violation of this chapter, or upon determining on its own initiative that a violation of this chapter may exist, the Ethics Commission shall have the power and duty to conduct any inquiry necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter. The Ethics Commission may administer oaths or affirmations. In conducting any inquiry pursuant to this section, and after first having sought and been denied cooperation and voluntary compliance with the course of its inquiry, the Ethics Commission may subpoena witnesses, compel their attendance, and require the production of any books or records which it may deem relevant and material.
B. 
Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit the Ethics Commission to conduct an inquiry of itself or of any of its members or staff. In the event the Ethics Commission receives a complaint alleging that the Ethics Commission or any of its members or staff has violated any provision of this chapter, or any other law, the Commission shall promptly transmit a copy of the complaint to the Mayor and City Council President.
C. 
The Ethics Commission shall state in writing the disposition of every sworn complaint it receives and of every inquiry it conducts and shall set forth the reasons for the disposition. All such statements and all sworn complaints shall be indexed and maintained on file by the Ethics Commission.
D. 
Any person filing a sworn complaint with the Ethics Commission shall be notified in writing of the disposition of the complaint.

§ 43-23 Hearings; assessment of penalties.

[Amended 8-2-2007 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
Disciplinary action. In its discretion, after a hearing providing for due process procedural mechanisms and subject to any applicable provisions of law and collective bargaining agreements, the Ethics Commission may recommend appropriate disciplinary action pursuant to the provisions of this chapter. In the case of a hearing held by the Commission, the due process procedural mechanisms shall be substantially similar to those set forth in Article 3 of the State Administrative Procedure Act. The recommendation of the Ethics Commission shall be made to the appointing authority or person or body authorized by law to impose such sanctions. The Ethics Commission shall conduct and complete the hearing with reasonable promptness, unless in its discretion the Ethics Commission refers the matter to the authority or person or body authorized by law to impose disciplinary action or unless the Ethics Commission refers the matter to the appropriate prosecutor. If such a referral is made, or if a matter is the subject of another governmental inquiry investigation or judicial proceeding, the Ethics Commission may adjourn the matter pending a final determination of such matter by the other authority, person, body, or prosecutor.
B. 
Prosecutions. The Ethics Commission may refer to the appropriate prosecutor possible criminal violations of this chapter. Nothing contained in this chapter shall be construed to restrict the authority of any prosecutor to prosecute any violation of this chapter or of any other law.

§ 43-24 Advisory opinions.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
Upon the written request of any officer or employee, the Ethics Board may render a written advisory opinion with respect to the interpretation or application of this chapter. Any other person may similarly request an advisory opinion, but only with respect to whether his or her own action might violate a provision of this chapter.
B. 
Advisory opinions and requests for advisory opinions shall be indexed and maintained on file by the Ethics Commission.

§ 43-25 Training and education.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
The Ethics Commission shall:
(1) 
Assist officers and employees subject to its jurisdiction by providing for training concerning compliance with this chapter; and
(2) 
Make information concerning this chapter available to the officers and employees, to the public, and to persons interested in doing business with the City.
B. 
The Ethics Commission shall develop educational materials and an educational program on the provisions of this chapter and file a copy of all such materials with the City Clerk and the Corporation Counsel.

§ 43-26 Reports; review of ethics laws.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
The Ethics Commission shall prepare and submit an annual report to the Mayor and City Council within 60 days of the end of each calendar year summarizing the activities of the Commission and making such recommendations as it deems necessary. The Ethics Commission shall file a copy of such reports with the City Clerk and the Corporation Counsel.
B. 
The Ethics Commission shall review all educational materials and programs at or before the first-quarter regularly scheduled meeting.

§ 43-27 Public inspection of records; public access to meetings.

[Amended 11-3-2011 by Ord. No. 6]
A. 
Records of the Ethics Commission are available for public inspection pursuant to the provisions of §§ 84 through 90 of the Public Officers Law.
B. 
Meetings of the Ethics Commission shall be accessible to the public pursuant to the provisions of §§ 100 through 111 of the Public Officers law.

§ 43-28 Reservation of rights.

A. 
No existing right or remedy shall be lost, impaired, or affected by reason of this chapter.
B. 
Nothing in this chapter shall be deemed to bar or prevent a present or former officer or employee from timely filing any claim, account, demand, or suit against the City on behalf of himself or herself or any member of his or her family arising out of personal injury or property damage or any lawful benefit authorized or permitted by law.

§ 43-29 Distribution and posting of act.

[Amended 10-2-2003 by L.L. No. 4-2003]
Within 30 days after the effective date of this chapter, and thereafter as appropriate, the Mayor shall distribute one copy of this chapter to each of the officers and employees of the City. Failure to distribute any such copy or failure of any officer or employee to receive such copy shall have no effect on the duty of compliance with such code, nor the enforcement provisions thereof.