[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Norristown 4-6-1982 as Ch. 20 of the 1981 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Charter ethics provisions — See Charter, Art. X.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any department, bureau, authority, commission, board or other governmental body within or established by the borough, including the Borough Council.
- A. An individual holding an office, named in the Borough Code or in any other ordinance of this borough, to which he is named by the Borough Council, whether that individual serves full-time or part-time, whether or not he receives compensation from the borough for his services and whether or not he holds a single named office or is one (1) of several individuals serving on a board, commission or authority.
- B. An individual employed by the borough on a full-time or part-time basis, exercising supervisory authority over any other borough employee and/or performing nonministerial action in connection with borough affairs.
- ELECTED OFFICER
- An individual holding a borough office in the choice of the electorate and provided for in Article VIII of the Borough Code.
- An individual employed by the borough on a full-time or part-time basis and not coming within the definition of "elected officer" or "appointed officer."
- A payment, advance, forbearance, rendering or deposit of money, services or anything of value, unless consideration of equal or greater value is received by the donor, but shall not include:
- IMMEDIATE FAMILY
- The spouse of an individual and those related by blood, adoption or marriage who are full-time residents of that individual's household.
- A natural person.
- MINISTERIAL ACTION
- An action that an individual performs in a prescribed manner in obedience to the mandate of legal authority, whether by law, ordinance or regulation or in the instruction of a superior, and without regard to or the exercise of the individual's own judgment as to the desirability of the action being taken.
- NONMINISTERIAL ACTION
- An action that an individual performs as part of his official powers, duties, authority or functions, in which he has authority to exercise discretion or judgment as to the legality or desirability of the action being taken.
- An individual, partnership, association or corporation.
- A member of an individual's immediate family and also that individual's father, mother, grandfather, grandmother, son, daughter or sibling, whether by blood, adoption or marriage, the latter including, for example, stepparents, stepchildren and half brothers and half sisters.
- Having a value of more than twenty-five dollars ($25.).
- The intrinsic worth, expressed in dollars, of anything, if that worth is known or easily obtainable; otherwise a good-faith estimate of that worth.
No elected or appointed officer and no employee shall use his borough office or employment in order to obtain any financial gain for himself, any relative of his or any business with which he is connected. "Financial gain" shall not apply to or include the authorized salary or other compensation paid that individual by the borough and applicable to his office, position, rank or class.
It shall be unlawful for any elected or appointed officer, for any employee or for any candidate for elected office to accept from any other person or to allow any of his relatives or any business with which he is connected to accept any valuable thing, including a gift, loan, political contribution or reward, based upon an understanding that the vote, official action or judgment of the recipient will be influenced by that action.
It shall be unlawful for any elected or appointed officer or for any employee to appear in behalf of another private interest before any agency of the borough or to represent any private interest in any action or proceeding against the interests of the borough in any litigation to which the borough is a party.
It shall be unlawful for any elected or appointed official or for any employee, without proper authorization, to disclose confidential information concerning the property, government or affairs of the borough; nor shall any such officer or employee use that information to advance the financial, personal or private interest of himself or any other person.
It shall be unlawful for any elected or appointed officer or for any employee to engage in or accept employment or to render services for any public or private agency or entity when that employment or service is incompatible with the proper discharge of his official or designated or assigned duties for the borough or would tend to impair his independence of judgment or action in the performance of those borough duties.
It shall be unlawful for any elected or appointed officer or for any employee to grant any special consideration to any person or individual beyond that which is available to every other person or individual.
It shall be unlawful for any appointed officer or employee to use the prestige, power or influence of his position on behalf of any political party or for any political cause.
No appointed officer and no employee shall, orally, by letter or otherwise, solicit or be in any manner concerned in soliciting any assessment, subscription or contribution to any political party, nor shall he be a party to such solicitation by another.
No elected or appointed officer and no employee shall promise an appointment to any borough position as a reward for any political activity or remove or threaten the removal of another officer or employee for failure to participate in political activity.
It shall be unlawful for any elected or appointed officer or for any employee to use or to request or permit the use of any vehicle, equipment, material or property owned or under the control of the borough for the convenience or profit of himself or any relative or business associate, except under conditions when that use is available to the public generally or is provided as borough policy.