Legislators look to revamp ethics laws

by Carol Thompson

The New York State’s Legislature recently made major sweeps to the state’s ethics laws.

Local municipalities can add to, but not subtract from, the state laws. Currently, the Oswego County Legislature is considering an update to its own ethics laws.

“We’ve got to get in line with the state and make changes to it,” Minority Leader Mike Kunzwiler said. “It’s the perfect opportunity.”

Under state executive law, a joint commission of public ethics was formed last year. Oswego County currently has a three-member ethics board and the legislature’s Strategic Planning and Government Committee has been in discussion in regard to adding more members. Many counties have five or seven member boards.

 

The committee has also discussed changes to the financial disclosure form that is required to be completed by all elected and appointed officials.

Governor Andrew Cuomo made it a campaign promise to end government secrecy by adding stronger language to the ethics law, more penalties and more transparency.

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