Town of Oyster Bay, NY
Nassau County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents

§ 30-4 Use of town position for personal or private gain.

No Town officer or employee shall use his or her Town position or official powers and duties to secure a material benefit, whether financial or otherwise, for:
A. 
Himself or herself.
B. 
A relative or member of his or her household.
C. 
Any private organization in which he or she has an interest.
D. 
A client or customer from which the officer or employee knows that he or she, his or her outside employer, firm, limited-liability company, partnership or association, or corporation in which he or she is the owner of more than 5% of the outstanding corporate stock, directly or indirectly derived income in excess of $5,000 during the previous 24 months, or
E. 
A person from whom the officer or employee has received a private loan or loans, or a gift or gifts, having an aggregate value of $75 or more during the previous 12 months.

§ 30-5 Prohibited interests in contracts.

A. 
No Town officer or employee shall have an interest in any contract with the Town, when such officer or employee, individually or as a member of a board or commission, has the power or duty, whether or not exercised, to:
(1) 
Negotiate, prepare, authorize or approve the contract or authorize or approve payment thereunder;
(2) 
Audit bills or claims under the contract; or
(3) 
Appoint an officer or employee who has any of the foregoing powers or duties.
B. 
For the purposes of this section, the term "contract" means any claim, account or demand against or agreement with the Town, express or implied.
C. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing, for the purposes of this section, the term "contract" shall not include:
(1) 
The designation of a bank or trust company as a depository, paying agent, registration agent or for investment of Town funds except when the chief fiscal officer, treasurer, or his deputy or employee, has an interest in such bank or trust company; provided, however, that where designation of a bank or trust company outside the Town would be required because of the foregoing restriction, a bank or trust company within the municipality may nevertheless be so designated;
(2) 
A contract with a person, firm, corporation or association in which a Town officer or employee has an interest which is prohibited solely by reason of his or her status as an officer or employee thereof, if the compensation from such employment will not be directly affected as a result of the contract and the duties of such employment do not directly involve the procurement, preparation or performance of any part of the contract;
(3) 
The designation of a newspaper, including but not limited to an official newspaper, for the publication of any notice, resolution, ordinance or other proceeding where such publication is required or authorized by law;
(4) 
The purchase by the Town of real property or an interest therein, provided the purchase and the consideration therefor is approved by order of the supreme court upon petition of the Town Board;
(5) 
The acquisition of real property or an interest therein, through condemnation proceedings according to law;
(6) 
A contract with a membership corporation or other voluntary nonprofit corporation or association;
(7) 
The sale of bonds and notes pursuant to Section 60.10 of the Local Finance Law;
(8) 
A contract in which a Town officer or employee has an interest if such contract was entered into prior to the time he or she was elected or appointed as such officer or employee, but this paragraph shall in no event authorize a renewal of any such contract;
(9) 
A contract with a corporation in which a Town officer or employee has an interest by reason of stockholdings when less than 5% of the outstanding stock of the corporation is owned or controlled directly or indirectly by such officer or employee;
(10) 
A contract for the furnishing of public utility services at rates or charges that are fixed or regulated by the public service commission;
(11) 
A contract for the payment of a reasonable rental of a room or rooms owned or leased by a Town officer or employee, used in the performance of his or her official duties, and designated as an office or chamber;
(12) 
A contract for the payment of a portion of the compensation of a private employee of an officer when such employee performs part time service in the official duties of the office;
(13) 
A contract in which a Town officer or employee has an interest if the total consideration payable thereunder, when added to the aggregate amount of all consideration payable under contracts in which such person had an interest during the fiscal year, does not exceed the sum of $750.
(14) 
A contract with a member of a private industry council stablished in accordance with the federal job training partnership act or any firm, corporation or association in which such member holds an interest, provided the member discloses such interest to the council and the member does not vote on the contract.

§ 30-6 Recusal.

No Town officer or employee shall participate in any decision or take any official action requiring the exercise of discretion, including discussing, deliberating or voting on a matter, when he or she knows or has reason to know that the action may confer a direct or indirect, material, financial or other benefit on a person or entity specified in § 30-4 of this chapter.

§ 30-7 Prohibition inapplicable; recusal and disclosure not required.

A. 
The requirements relating to recusal set forth in § 30-6 of this chapter, and the disclosure requirements set forth in Article III of this chapter, shall not apply with respect to the following matters:
(1) 
Adoption of the Town's annual budget;
(2) 
Any matter requiring the exercise of discretion that directly affects any of the following groups of people or a similarly situated class of such people:
(a) 
All or substantially all Town officers or employees;
(b) 
All or substantially all residents or taxpayers of the Town or an area of the Town; or
(c) 
The general public;
(3) 
Any ministerial matter (a matter that does not require the exercise of discretion);
(4) 
Uncompensated participation by a member of the Town Board, or by a Town Board member's staff on behalf of such member, in public advocacy whether or not on behalf of a constituent;
(5) 
Appearance by a Town employee before a Town department, agency, board or commission in a representative capacity on behalf of an employee organization in any matter where such appearance is duly authorized by the employee organization;
(6) 
Uncompensated participation in public advocacy by a Town officer or employee who serves as a political party chairperson;
B. 
Recusal shall not be required, but disclosure pursuant to Article II of this chapter shall be required, with respect to any matter:
(1) 
Which comes before a board or commission when a majority of the entire membership of the board or commission would otherwise be prohibited from acting; or
(2) 
Which comes before a Town officer when the officer would be prohibited from acting and the matter cannot be lawfully delegated to another person.

§ 30-8 Investments in conflict with official duties.

A. 
No Town officer or employee shall acquire or maintain any investment:
(1) 
The ownership of which requires that the Town officer or employee frequently and inevitably recuse himself or herself; or
(2) 
That would impair his or her independence of judgment in the exercise or performance of his or her official powers and duties.
B. 
This section shall not prohibit a Town officer or employee from acquiring or maintaining the following:
(1) 
Real property located within the Town and used as his or her personal residence;
(2) 
Less than 5% of the stock of a publicly traded corporation; or
(3) 
Bonds or notes issued by the Town and acquired more than one year after the date on which the bonds or notes were originally issued.

§ 30-9 Private employment in conflict with official duties.

A. 
No elected Town official or Town employee serving as staff to the Town Board or to a Town Board member, shall receive or agree to receive, directly or indirectly, any compensation for consulting or advisory services in connection with any proposed local law or resolution of the Town Board.
B. 
No Town officer or employee shall ask for, pursue or accept a private secondary employment opportunity with any person or organization that has a matter requiring the exercise of discretion pending before the Town officer or employee, either individually or as a member of a board or commission, while the matter is pending or within the 30 days following final disposition of the matter.
C. 
No Town officer or employee, during his or her tenure as a Town officer or employee, shall engage in any secondary employment, or engage in any business, commercial, or professional activity, when the secondary employment or business, commercial or professional activity:
(1) 
Involves duties that are incompatible with those of the official duties of the Town officer or employee;
(2) 
May be reasonably expected to require frequent and inevitable recusal;
(3) 
May be reasonably expected to require disclosure or personal use of confidential information gained by reason of serving as a Town officer or employee;
(4) 
Pursuant to which the officer or employee will receive, or enter into any agreement, express or implied, to receive compensation for services to be rendered in connection with any matter before any Town department, agency, board or commission of which he or she is an officer, member or employee or of any Town department, agency, board or commission over which he or she has jurisdiction or to which he has the power to appoint any member, officer or employee;
(5) 
Pursuant to which the officer or employee will receive, or enter into any agreement, express or implied, to receive compensation for services to be rendered in connection with any matter before any Town department, agency, board or commission, whereby his compensation is to be dependent or contingent upon any action by such department, agency, board or commission with respect to such matter, provided that this paragraph shall not prohibit the fixing at any time of fees based upon the reasonable value of the services rendered; or
(6) 
Involves the representation of a person or organization other than the Town in connection with any application, request, claim or proposal before any Town department, agency, board or commission, or any litigation, negotiations or matter requiring the exercise of discretion to which the Town is a party; or
(7) 
Pursuant to which the officer or employee will receive, or enter into any agreement, express or implied, to receive compensation for services rendered in connection with any application, request, claim or proposal before any Town department, agency, board or commission, or any litigation, negotiations or matter requiring the exercise of discretion to which the Town is a party.
D. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing, a person serving the Town or any agency thereof without compensation shall not be subject to the prohibitions set forth in Subsection C(6) and C(7) of this section.

§ 30-10 Future employment.

A. 
No Town officer or employee shall ask for, pursue or accept a private post-government employment opportunity with any person or organization that has a matter requiring the exercise of discretion pending before the Town officer or employee, either individually or as a member of a board or commission, while the matter is pending or within the 30 days following final disposition of the matter.
B. 
No Town officer or employee, for the one-year period after serving as a Town officer or employee, shall appear before or communicate in any form with the Town office, board, department or comparable organizational unit for which he or she served, except on behalf of the state or a political subdivision or instrumentality thereof, or in furtherance of the interests of the Town with the approval of the Board of Ethics upon application of the his or her former Town department, agency, board or commission.
C. 
No Town officer or employee, at any time after serving as a Town officer or employee, shall represent or render services to a private person or organization in connection with any particular matter in which he or she personally and substantially participated while serving as a Town officer or employee, except on behalf of the state or a political subdivision or instrumentality thereof, or in furtherance of the interests of the Town with the approval of the Board of Ethics upon application of a Town department, agency, board or commission.

§ 30-11 Independent contractors.

No independent contractor or employee of an independent contractor of the Town shall seek to exert undue influence, or to obtain an undue preference, on behalf of a private interest, directly or indirectly, in a matter before any Town department, agency, board or commission. A violation of this section shall be cause for termination of the independent contractor's engagement with the Town.

§ 30-12 Personal representations and claims permitted.

This code shall not be construed as prohibiting a Town officer or employee or an independent contractor of the Town from:
A. 
Seeking or accepting Town services, benefits, or the use of Town facilities, on the same terms and conditions as are available to Town residents or a class of similarly situated Town residents.
B. 
Representing, without compensation, himself or herself, a relative, or a member of his or her household before a Town department, agency, board or commission other than the one served by the Town officer, employee or independent contractor; or
C. 
Asserting a claim against the Town on his or her own behalf, or on behalf of a relative or member of his or her household, unless the claim is prohibited by § 30-2 of this article, or by Section 801 of the New York General Municipal Law.

§ 30-13 Use of Town resources.

A. 
Town resources shall be used only for lawful Town purposes. Town resources include, but are not limited to, Town personnel, compensated time, money, vehicles, equipment, letterhead, materials, supplies or other property.
B. 
No Town officer or employee shall use or permit the use of Town resources for personal or private purposes, but this provision shall not be construed as prohibiting:
(1) 
Any use of Town resources authorized by law, Town policy or collective bargaining agreement to which the Town is a party;
(2) 
The use of Town resources for personal or private purposes when provided to a Town officer or employee as part of his or her compensation; or
(3) 
The occasional and incidental use of Town telephones and computers for necessary personal, nonbusiness matters such as family care and changes in work schedule.
C. 
No Town officer or employee shall cause the Town to spend more than is reasonably necessary for transportation, meals or lodging in connection with official travel.

§ 30-14 Nepotism.

Except as otherwise required by law:
A. 
No Town officer or employee, either individually or as a member of a Town Board or commission, shall participate in any decision to appoint, hire, promote, discipline or discharge a relative or a member of his or her household.
B. 
No Town officer or employee shall supervise a relative or member of his or her household in the performance of such person's official duties.

§ 30-15 Political solicitations.

A. 
No Town officer or employee shall directly or indirectly use his or her authority or official influence to compel or induce a subordinate Town officer or employee to make or promise to make any political contribution, whether by gift of money, service or other thing of value.
B. 
No Town officer or employee shall act or decline to act in relation to appointing, hiring or promoting, discharging, disciplining, or in any manner changing the official rank, status or compensation of any Town officer or employee, or an applicant for a position as a Town officer or employee, on the basis of the giving or withholding or neglecting to make any contribution of money or service or any other valuable thing for any political purpose.

§ 30-16 Confidential information.

No current or former Town officer or employee shall disclose confidential information concerning the property, government or affairs of the Town or any other confidential information of an official character obtained as a result of Town employment, except when disclosure is required by law or when such information is otherwise available to the public, nor shall be or she use such information to advance the financial or other private interest of himself or herself or others.

§ 30-17 Gifts, tips and other benefits.

A. 
No Town officer or employee shall directly or indirectly solicit any gift, tip or other benefit from a person who has received or sought a financial benefit from the Town within the previous 24 months.
B. 
No Town officer or employee shall accept any gift, tip or other benefit from a person who the Town officer or employee knows or has reason to know has received or sought a financial benefit from the Town within the previous 24 months.
C. 
No Town officer or employee shall solicit, accept or agree to accept any gift, tip or other benefit for having engaged in official conduct which he or she was required or authorized to perform, and for which he or she was not entitled to any special or additional compensation.
D. 
No Town officer or employee shall accept or receive any gift, tip or other benefit having a value of $75 or more, or multiple gifts, tips or other benefits from the same donor in a twelve-month period, having an aggregate value of $75 or more when:
(1) 
The gift, tip or other benefit would reasonably appear to be intended to influence the officer or employee in the exercise or performance of his or her official duties;
(2) 
The gift, tip or other benefit would reasonably be expected to influence the officer or employee in the exercise or performance of his or her official duties; or
(3) 
The gift, tip or other benefit would reasonably appear to be intended as a reward for any official action on the part of the officer or employee.
E. 
For purposes of this section, a "gift, tip or other benefit" includes anything of value, whether in the form of money, service, loan, travel, entertainment, hospitality, thing or promise, or in any other form. The value of a gift, tip or other benefit shall be deemed to be its fair market value, determined by the retail cost of the item or a comparable item. The fair market value of a ticket entitling the holder to food, refreshments, entertainment, or any other benefit shall be deemed to be the face value of the ticket, or the actual cost to the donor, whichever is greater.
F. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing, this section shall not prohibit:
(1) 
Gifts made to the Town and duly accepted on the Town's behalf;
(2) 
Gifts from a person with a family or personal relationship with the officer or employee when it is reasonable to conclude that the personal relationship, rather than the recipient's status as a Town officer or employee, is the primary motivating factor for the gift;
(3) 
Gifts given on nonrecurring special occasions, such as marriage, illness, or retirement, which are reasonable and customary;
(4) 
Unsolicited advertising or promotional material of little intrinsic value, such as pens, pencils, note pads, and calendars;
(5) 
Awards and plaques having a value of less than $75, which are publicly presented in recognition of service as a Town officer or employee, or other service to the community; or
(6) 
Incidental meals and refreshments provided when a Town officer or employee is a speaker or participant at a job-related professional, charitable, educational, or community conference, program or event;
(7) 
Gifts or benefits having a value of $100 or less that are received by a Town officer or employee serving in a capacity listed in Section 11 of the Domestic Relations Law for the solemnization of a marriage by the officer or employee at a place other than his or her normal public place of business or at a time other than his or her normal hours of business;
(8) 
Gifts or benefits having a value of $75 or less that are received by a marriage officer appointed by the Town Board pursuant to Section 11-c of the Domestic Relations Law and serving without salary or wage, for the solemnization of a marriage by the officer or employee.

§ 30-18 Inducement of others.

No Town officer, employee or independent contractor shall induce a Town officer, employee or independent contractor to violate, nor aid a Town officer, employee or independent contractor in violating, any of the provisions of this chapter.