County Considering Revisions to Ethics Ordinance
Cook County’s Legislation and Intergovernmental Relations Committee remains committed to revising the county’s ethics ordinance, specifically, sections related to fiduciary duty. The changes provide that officials, Board or commission appointees, and employees shall disclose any conflicts of interests to the appropriate party and recuse oneself from voting or participating in a decision involving the conflict of interest.
Changes further provide that any covered individual shall not participate in making or presiding over making any decision on an agenda item that they know or has reason to know that they or their relative has any economic interest in, derived income from, or expect to derive income from.
When conflict of interests arise, covered officials must disclose the conflict, nature of such, and extent in writing to the Board Secretary or applicable secretary as soon as the covered individual becomes aware of the conflict. Notice must be made within 24 hours of the introduction of any ordinance, resolution, contract, order, administrative action, or other matter before the covered individual. Disclosures will be available for public inspection upon request.
In addition, the amendment further prohibits the hiring of a covered individual’s relative. Covered individuals cannot participate in a hiring decision of a relative or supervise or participate in the evaluation of a relative unless such supervision is:
- Required by law;
- Properly disclosed to the Board and the Board provides written approval; or
- The supervisory arrangement issue predates the enactment of the ordinance amendment.
Cook County Farm Bureau® leadership and staff continues to monitor the issue and committee meetings and will provide comment if deemed necessary. Members interested in providing feedback or seeking additional information please contact Bona Heinsohn at 708-354-3276 or via email at email@example.com.