Town of Rock Hall, MD
Kent County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Town of Rock Hall 7-2-1981 by Ord. No. 81-7. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Personnel policies — See Ch. 32.
The provisions of this chapter apply to the following Rock Hall officials and employees:
A. 
The Mayor.
B. 
Councilpersons.
C. 
The Clerk-Treasurer.
D. 
The Assistant Clerk-Treasurer.
E. 
The Town Engineer.
F. 
The Police Chief.
G. 
Police officers.
H. 
Town maintenance personnel.
I. 
The waste treatment plant operator.
J. 
Other town employees.
K. 
Town Manager.
[Added 3-8-2001 by Ord. No. 2001-01]
There shall be a Rock Hall Ethics Commission, which shall be composed of three members appointed by the Mayor. The Commission shall be advised by the Attorney for the Town of Rock Hall and shall have the following responsibilities:
A. 
To devise, receive and maintain all forms generated by this chapter.
B. 
To provide published advisory opinions to persons subject to this chapter as to the applicability of the provisions of this chapter to them.
C. 
To process and make determinations as to complaints filed by any person alleging violations of this chapter.
D. 
To conduct a public information program regarding the purposes and application of this chapter.
Rock Hall officials and employees who are subject to this chapter shall not:
A. 
Participate on behalf of the Town of Rock Hall in any matter which would have a direct financial impact on them, their spouse or dependent child or a business entity with which they are affiliated.
B. 
Hold or acquire an interest of either $10,000 or 25% or greater in a business entity that has or is negotiating a contract of $3,000 or more with the Town of Rock Hall or is regulated by their agency.
C. 
Be employed by a business entity that has or is negotiating a contract of more than $20,000 with the Town of Rock Hall or is regulated by their agency.
D. 
Represent any party, for a contingent fee, before any town body.
E. 
Within one year following the termination of town services, act as compensated representatives of another in connection with any specific matter in which they participated substantially as town officials or employees.
F. 
Solicit or accept gifts of greater than $50 in value from any person that has or is negotiating a contract with the town or is regulated by their agency, except where such gifts would not present a conflict of interest as determined by the Commission.
G. 
Use the prestige of their offices, for their own benefits or that of another.
H. 
Use confidential information acquired in their official town positions for their own benefits or that of another.
A. 
The town officials and employees and candidates for offices listed in Subsection B of this section shall file annually, no later than January 31 of each calendar year during which they hold office, a statement with the Commission disclosing any gifts received during the preceding calendar year from any person having a contract with the town or any person regulated by their agency. The statement shall identify the donor of the gift and its approximate retail value at the time of receipt.
B. 
Officials and employees required to file are as follows:
(1) 
The Mayor.
(2) 
Councilpersons.
(3) 
The Clerk-Treasurer.
(4) 
The Assistant Clerk-Treasurer.
(5) 
The Town Engineer.
(6) 
The Police Chief.
(7) 
Police officers.
(8) 
Town maintenance personnel.
(9) 
The Waste Treatment Plant Operator.
(10) 
Other town employees.
(11) 
Town Manager.
[Added 3-8-2001 by Ord. No. 2001-01]
C. 
All town officials and employees subject to this chapter shall file a statement with the Commission disclosing any interest or employment, the holding of which would require disqualification from participation pursuant to the following:
(1) 
Disqualification. The disqualification provision of this chapter prohibiting official participation by covered officials and employees in municipal matters, the outcome of which would have a direct economic impact on the official or employee, his spouse or dependent child or a business entity with which the official or employee is affiliated, depending on local circumstances and the threshold levels of value of an official local transaction or of value of the official's interest in the matter, could be established. A provision allowing participation where the potential conflict is disclosed and no other official may act may be established. Exemption provisions may also be established allowing a waiver of the disqualification requirement where no conflict of interest or where the interest of the official or other person is found to be too remote and insubstantial to affect the integrity of this public action.
A. 
Any person who personally appears before any town official or employee with the intent to influence that person in the performance of his official duties and who, in connection with such intent, expends or reasonably expects to expend in a given calendar year in excess of $240 on food, entertainment or other gifts for such official shall file a registration statement with the Commission no later than January 15 of the calendar year or within five days after first making such appearances.
B. 
The registration statement shall include complete identification of the registrant and of any other person on whose behalf the registrant acts. It shall also identify the subject matter on which the registrant proposes to make such appearances.
C. 
Registrants under this chapter shall file a report within 30 days after the end of any calendar year during which they were registered, disclosing the value, date and nature of any food, entertainment or other gift provided to a town official or employee. Where a gift or series of gifts to a single official or employee exceeds $240 in value, the official or employee shall also be identified.
A. 
The Commission may issue a cease and desist order against any person found to be in violation of this chapter and may seek enforcement of such order in the Circuit Court of Kent County.
B. 
A town official or employee found to have violated this chapter may be subject to disciplinary or other appropriate personnel action, including the suspension of town salary or other compensation.
C. 
Violation of this chapter shall be a misdemeanor subject to a fine of up to $500, but not less than $5, or imprisonment of up to one year, or both.