[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Old Tappan 2-28-2000 by Ord. No. 704-00. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Political contributions have a profound impact on government decisionmaking. Our laws in New Jersey do not presently ban solicitation or acceptance of contributions by public office holders and employees while on public property or by use of public facilities. A conflict may arise between the business of political fundraising and the business of government in Borough Hall, and this may cause a distraction from the people's business. The most appropriate method to prevent this conflict and to ensure the integrity of government decisions is the prohibition of political fundraising on or by use of the Borough Hall. It is accordingly found and determined that the paramount public interest in a clean and accountable government requires the prohibition of political fundraising on or by use of the Borough Hall.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any individual seeking election to a public office of the federal government, state, county, municipality, school district or political organization at an election.
- Includes all loans and transfers of money or other thing of value to or by any candidate, elected official or political organization and all pledges or other commitments or assumptions of liability to make any such transfer. Contributions shall be deemed to have been made upon the date when such commitment is made or liability assumed.
- The Borough of Old Tappan and any officer, department, board, commission, or agency thereof.
- MUNICIPAL OFFICIAL, EMPLOYEE AND APPOINTEE
- Any person holding elective municipal office or holding an appointed position in the municipal government, or in any agency, commission, board, or office thereof, whether the position is full-time or part-time, compensated or uncompensated, and any employee of the municipal government, or in any agency, commission, board, or office thereof, whether the position is full-time or part-time.
- POLITICAL ORGANIZATION
- Any two or more persons acting jointly, or any corporation, partnership or any other incorporated or unincorporated association which is organized to or does aid or promote the nomination, election or defeat of any candidate or candidates for federal, state, county, municipal or school board office. "Political organization" includes, but is not limited to, organizations otherwise defined as "political committee," "joint candidates committee," and "legislative leadership committee."
- To seek by oral or written communication a contribution as the same is defined herein.
No municipal official, employee or appointee may solicit, commit to pay, or receive payment of or a commitment to pay any contribution for any candidate, elected official or political organization while in or on the property of the Borough Hall.
Prohibited forms of fundraising shall include but are not limited to:
Soliciting or accepting contributions using Borough Hall telephones, fax machines or computers.
Soliciting or accepting contributions using personal telephones while on the property of the Borough Hall.
Soliciting or accepting contributions through the use of publicly owned computers or privately owned personal computers while on the property of the Borough Hall.
Sending correspondence from Borough Hall or by use of borough services, equipment or postage.
Face-to-face soliciting of an individual or an owner or representative of a business entity while on the property of the Borough Hall.
It shall be the responsibility of any employee or appointed or elected official who observes any prohibited forms of fundraising to report such conduct to the borough prosecutor and the Borough Clerk, who shall report the same to the governing body.
It shall be unlawful for any employee, elected official or appointee to be dismissed, reprimanded, retaliated against or otherwise intimidated for complying with the reporting requirements mandated by this chapter.
Violation of any provision of this chapter shall be punished by a period of community service not exceeding 90 days or a fine not exceeding $1,000, or both.