City Ethics Board To Ask Commission For Expanded Jurisdiction

Jul 17, 2018

Tallahassee Independent Ethics Board logo

Tallahassee’s Independent Ethics Board plans to ask the City Commission for a wider jurisdiction. Statute governing the board prevents it from taking action against non-elected city employees.

As it stands, the City Ethics Board can’t act on a complaint that a City employee misused their position. Board chair Richard Herring cites a complaint made in June. It relates to an employee giving artificial raises, but was outside their jurisdiction.

"As usual the devil is in the details. So for instance, right now we have jurisdiction over misuse of position," Herring said at Tuesday's meeting. "But it’s only misuse of position by city elected and appointed officials. Which is a very small number of people."

Herring says that can bar the board from holding even high ranking employees accountable.

"If it was a high-level city manager, who was not an appointed official, our jurisdiction would not extend to that person even though there was a clear allegation they had misused their position," Herring said.

Though it closed the complaint regarding raises, the board is requesting to review all pay raises and bonuses for City employees this year.