[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Egg Harbor 5-10-1978 by Ord. No. 7-78. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- A. Mayor, Chairman of the Township Committee and Committeemen.
- B. Township Clerk, Treasurer, Attorney, Engineer, Auditor and the assistant or assistants of any of them.
- C. Any other elected or appointed officer, official or employee of any board, commission or agency and advisory board, whether paid or unpaid, created by the Mayor or the governing body of the Township of Egg Harbor, except members of the Police Department and Volunteer Fire Department of the Township of Egg Harbor.
No official or employee, whether paid or unpaid, shall engage in any business or transaction or shall have a financial or other personal interest, direct or indirect, which is incompatible with the proper discharge of his official duties in the public interest or would tend to impair his independence of judgment or action in the performance of his official duties.
No official or employee shall engage in or accept private employment or render services for private interests, when such employment or service is incompatible with the proper discharge of his official duties or would tend to impair his independence of judgment or action in the performance of his official duties.
No official or employee shall solicit, negotiate for or promise to accept employment with any person, firm or corporation with which he is engaged in behalf of the Township in the transaction of business or which is or may be affected by his official action.
No official or employee shall, without proper legal authorization, disclose confidential information concerning the property, government or affairs of the Township, nor shall he use such information to advance the financial or other private interest of himself or others. The Township Committee of the Township of Egg Harbor shall pass a resolution as shall, from time to time, be necessary determining what information shall be deemed confidential for the purpose of this chapter.
No official or employee shall accept any gift or gratuity, whether in the form of service, loan or promise, or in any other form, from any person, firm or corporation, the acceptance of which may tend to influence him in the discharge of his official duties in behalf of the Township of Egg Harbor.
No official or employee shall represent a private interest before the Township Committee or before any board, commission, or agency of the Township. He shall not represent private interests in any action or proceeding against the interests of the Township in any litigation to which the Township is a party.
Any official or employee who has a financial interest in any transaction or contract with the Township, or in the sale or purchase of real estate, materials, supplies or services to or from the Township, shall make known to the Mayor and Township Committee, in writing, such interest in any matter on which he may be called to act in his official capacity. He shall refrain from voting upon or otherwise participating in the transaction or the making of such contract, sale or purchase.
No Committeeman or member of the Township Committee or of any agency thereof shall vote for the adoption or defeat of any legislation or for the payment or nonpayment of any indebtedness owing or allegedly owing by the Township in which he has any financial or other personal interest, direct or indirect; nor shall any official or employee recommend or lobby for the adoption or defeat of any legislation or for the institution or defense of any legal or quasi-legal action whatever in which he has or may have a financial or other personal interest, direct or indirect.
Any official or employee who has or may have such interest in such legislation, indebtedness or action and who participates in discussion with or gives an official opinion to the Township Committee or agency with respect thereto shall disclose on the records of the Township Committee or agency the nature and extent of such interest.
No official or employee shall use his official position to obtain a personal discount or any preferential or favored treatment or any rights, benefits, advantages or privileges for himself or for any other person.
In the event that any official or employee of the Township does not comply with the standards set forth in this chapter, a charge of the violation of this chapter may be instituted by the Township Committee or any individual when he has knowledge or information indicating that a violation exists. Such charge or charges shall be in writing, under oath, and shall be signed by the person charging a violation thereof as the case may be and shall contain a clear and concise statement of the facts alleged to constitute such violation. Such charge or charges shall be filed with the Township Clerk on a form prescribed by the Township Clerk. The Township Committee shall promptly set a date for formal hearing of the charges and shall serve a copy of the charges on the accused and shall advise him, in writing, of the date and place of such hearing at least 10 days prior thereto. At such hearing, charges shall be presented and evidence in support thereof shall be received, and the accused shall be offered an opportunity, either personally or by counsel, to cross-examine the witnesses to be heard and to present evidence on his own behalf.
As soon as practicable after conclusion of said hearing, but not later than 30 days, the Township Committee shall render a written decision on the charges and shall mail a copy thereof to the accused and file a copy with the Township Clerk.
In the event that the accused shall be the Mayor or a member of the Township Committee, said accused shall not take any part in the deliberations of the Township Committee with respect to the hearing.
In the event that any official or employee discloses, in writing, to the Committee any possible involvement by that individual with regard to a possible violation of this chapter, prior to the time that said individual engages in said action, then no charges shall be brought against the individual, provided that said individual does not vote for, participate in, lobby for, or attempt to influence any Township board, agency, official and/or employee in which said individual might have any possible involvement.
Any person filing charges pursuant to § 16-11 of this chapter shall not be exempt from the libel and slander laws of the State of New Jersey by reason of his filing thereof, nor shall any of said charges filed by an individual pursuant to § 16-11 be considered as privileged under the libel and slander laws of the State of New Jersey.
In the event that any action complained of has been approved by or has been taken pursuant to a state statute or local ordinance or if said action has been approved by the courts of the State of New Jersey, then no charges of possible violation of this chapter shall be brought against any officer or employee of the Township.
Upon a final finding, in accordance with the procedures prescribed in § 16-11 of this chapter, of a violation of any of the provisions of this chapter by any appointed official or employee, the Mayor and Township Committee may suspend, demote or dismiss such official or employee in accordance with applicable statutory authority of the State of New Jersey.
Compliance with this chapter shall be deemed a condition of employment or continued employment for all Township employees and appointed officials.
[Added 5-31-2017 by Ord. No. 19-2017]
The Township Committee shall adopt by resolution a handbook setting forth a Code of Ethics and Conduct for members of all elected and appointed boards in the Township. The handbook shall be reviewed and updated on a periodic basis by Township Committee.