Town of Chautauqua, NY
Chautauqua County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Chautauqua as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Defense and indemnification — See Ch. 16.
Officers and employees — See Ch. 36.
[Adopted 11-9-1970]
Pursuant to the provisions of § 806 of the General Municipal Law, the Town Board of the Town of Chautauqua recognizes that there are rules of ethical conduct for public officers and employees which must be observed if a high degree of moral conduct is to be obtained and if public confidence is to be maintained in our unit of local government. It is the purpose of this article to promulgate these rules of ethical conduct for the officers and employees of the Town of Chautauqua. These rules shall serve as a guide for official conduct of the officers and employees of the Town of Chautauqua. The rules of ethical conduct of this article, as adopted, shall not conflict with, but shall be in addition to, any prohibition of Article 18 of the General Municipal Law or any other general or special law relating to ethical conduct and interest in contracts of municipal officers and employees.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
INTEREST
[Amended 2-8-1993 by L.L. No. 1-1993; 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
Any interest, whether direct or indirect, financial, material or otherwise, that results from a contract, except a contract of employment with the Town of Chautauqua; a business or professional transaction or any transaction with the Town of Chautauqua and accruing to:
A. 
A town officer or employee, his spouse, children, stepchildren or dependents, parent, grandparent, brother, sister, brother-in-law or sister-in-law.
B. 
A firm, partnership or association of which a town officer or employee is a member or employee.
C. 
A corporation of which such town officer or employee is an officer, director or employee.
D. 
A corporation, any stock of which is accrued or controlled directly or indirectly by such town officer or employee.
TOWN (OR MUNICIPAL) OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE
An officer or employee of the Town of Chautauqua, whether paid or unpaid, including members of any administrative board, commission or other agency thereof. No person shall be deemed to be a town (or municipal) officer or employee solely by reason of being an election inspector or a volunteer fireman or civil defense volunteer, except a chief engineer.
[Amended 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
Every officer or employee of the Town of Chautauqua shall be subject to and abide by the following standards of conduct:
A. 
Gifts. He shall not, directly or indirectly, solicit any gift; or accept or receive any gift having a value of $75 or more, whether in the form of money, service, loan, travel, entertainment, hospitality, thing or promise, or any other form, under circumstances in which it could reasonably be inferred that the gift was intended to influence him, or could reasonably be expected to influence him, in the performance of his official duties or was intended as a reward for any official action on his part.
[Amended 2-8-1993 by L.L. No. 1-1993]
B. 
Confidential information. He shall not disclose confidential information acquired by him in the course of his official duties or use such information to further his personal interest.
C. 
Representation before one's own agency. He shall not receive, or enter into any agreement, express or implied, for compensation for services to be rendered in relation to any matter before any municipal agency of which he is an officer, member or employee, or of any municipal agency over which he has jurisdiction or to which he has the power to appoint any member, officer or employee.
D. 
Representation before any agency for a contingent fee. He shall not receive, or enter into any agreement, express or implied, for compensation for services to be rendered in relation to any matter before any agency of his municipality, whereby his compensation is to be dependent or contingent upon any action by such agency with respect to such matter, provided that this subsection shall not prohibit the fixing at any time of fees based upon the reasonable value of the services rendered.
E. 
Disclosure of interest in legislation. To the extent that he knows thereof, a member of the Town Board and any officer or employee of the Town of Chautauqua, whether paid or unpaid, who participates in the discussion or gives official opinion to the Town Board on any legislation before the Town Board shall publicly disclose on the official record the nature and extent of any direct or indirect financial or other private interest he has in such legislation.
F. 
Employment of family members. No elected official, department head or other employee shall use or attempt to use his or her official position to secure employment for a spouse, child, stepchild or dependent, parent, grandparent, brother, sister, brother-in-law or sister-in-law or otherwise conduct himself or herself in a manner that creates an inference of nepotism.
[Amended 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
G. 
Private employment. He shall not engage in, solicit, negotiate for or promise to accept private employment or render services for private interests when such employment or service creates a conflict with or impairs the proper discharge of his official duties.
H. 
Future employment.
[Amended 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
(1) 
He shall not, within one year after the termination of service or employment with such municipality, appear before any board or agency of the Town of Chautauqua in relation to any case, proceeding or application in which he personally participated during the period of his service or employment or which was under his active consideration, unless so requested specifically by the Town of Chautauqua.
(2) 
No Town Officer or Employee, within one year after the termination of his service or employment with the town, shall accept employment which will involve contact with the town, which can work to his special advantage by virtue of his private contact and relationship with the town.
I. 
Prohibited use of town property. No town officer or employee shall request or permit the use of town-owned vehicles, equipment, materials or property for personal convenience or profit of himself or any other person, except, however, when such property, vehicles, equipment, material or services are available to the public generally, or which are provided as a matter of town policy for the use of officers or employees in the conduct of their official business.
[Added 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
J. 
Recusal. No town officer or employee, acting in his official capacity, shall take action or participate in any manner whatsoever in the discussion, negotiation or awarding of any contract or in any business or professional dealings with the town which the officer or employee has, or will have, an interest in such contract or business or professional dealing.
[Added 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
K. 
Transactions in conflict with official duties. No town officer or employee shall engage in any transaction as a representative or agent of the town with any business entity in which he has a financial interest that might reasonably tend to conflict with the proper discharge of his official duties.
[Added 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
L. 
Investments in conflict with official duties. Each town officer or employee shall abstain from making personal investments in enterprises which he has reason to believe may be directly involved in decisions to be made by him or which will otherwise create substantial conflict between his duty and the public interest and his private interest.
[Added 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
M. 
Use of position. No town officer or employee shall use or attempt to use his official position to secure unwarranted privileges or exemptions for himself or others.
[Added 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
Nothing herein shall be deemed to bar or prevent the timely filing by a present or former municipal officer or employee of any claim, account, demand or suit against the Town of Chautauqua, or any agency thereof on behalf of himself or any member of his family arising out of any personal injury or property damage or for any lawful benefit authorized or permitted by law.
[Amended 2-8-1993 by L.L. No. 1-1993]
The Supervisor of the Town of Chautauqua shall cause a copy of this Code of Ethics to be distributed to every officer and employee of the Town of Chautauqua within 30 days after the effective date of this article. Each officer and employee elected or appointed thereafter shall be furnished a copy before entering upon the duties of his office or employment. Failure to distribute any such copy or failure of any such officer or employee to receive such copy shall have no effect on the duty of compliance with such code, nor the enforcement provisions thereof.
In addition to any penalty contained in any other provision of law, any person who shall knowingly and intentionally violate any of the provisions of this code may be fined, suspended or removed from office or employment, as the case may be, in the manner provided by law.
[Added 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
No officer or employee of the town and no organization or service chartered by or directly or indirectly sponsored or supported by the town shall:
A. 
Discriminate or cause segregation, directly or indirectly, based upon gender, creed, race or national origin or allow said factors to affect the recruitment, selection, placement, assignment, compensation or promotion of any officer, employee or member of said organization or service.
B. 
Permit, directly or indirectly, the use of any property, equipment or service by any person or persons, organizations, corporations or any other group which directly or indirectly discriminates as set forth in Subsection A above.
[Adopted 2-8-1993 by L.L. No. 1-1993]
There is hereby created in the town a Board of Ethics to consist of not less than three nor more than five members to be appointed by the Town Board by resolution when needed and who shall serve without compensation and at the pleasure of the Town Board. A majority of such members shall be persons other than officers or employees of the Town of Chautauqua, but shall include at least one member who is an elected or appointed officer or employee of the Town of Chautauqua.
[Amended 5-18-1998 by L.L. No. 2-1998]
A. 
The Board of Ethics shall have the powers and duties prescribed by Article 18 of the General Municipal Law, and shall render advisory opinions to the officers and employees of the Town of Chautauqua with respect to Article 18 of the General Municipal Law.
B. 
The Board of Ethics shall also have the following powers and duties:
(1) 
Issue advisory opinions to any municipal officer or employee requesting the same in accordance with Subsection C below.
(2) 
Require the presence of any person or persons initiating any inquiry.
(3) 
Recommend to the Town Board any training and education to town officers and employees the Board of Ethics deems advisable.
(4) 
Recommend changes to the Code of Ethics, if necessary.
(5) 
Act only with respect to officers, employees and consultants of the Town of Chautauqua.
(6) 
At the option of the Town Board of Ethics refer any matter within its jurisdiction to the County or State Board of Ethics.
C. 
Advisory opinions.
(1) 
Upon the written request of any municipal officer or employee, the Board of Ethics shall render an advisory opinion to such officer or employee with respect to any matter addressed by this code as such matter applies to the subject officer or employee. Said opinion shall be in writing and shall set forth reasons in support thereof.
(2) 
Upon written request of any board, commission or department of the town, the Board of Ethics shall render written advisory opinions with respect to the interpretation or application in a general sense of any provision of this code.