The Public Ethics Commission (PEC) issued a letter to City Council in September 2013 articulating the need for the City to adopt a local Ethics Ordinance, enforceable by the PEC, to support effective ethics prevention and enforcement in City government. Currently, there is no local ethics ordinance in Oakland, and the Commission has no legal authority to impose penalties for violations of ethics laws. The PEC suggested including the following provisions in a local ethics ordinance:
•Use of public resources for private or political purposes •Conflicts of interest in decision-making •Leaving public office to work for a company doing business with the City within a restricted post-employment time period (“Revolving door” rules) •Bias, Nepotism, Cronyism •Serving in two incompatible positions •Bribery •Embezzlement •Preventing or inhibiting competitive bidding on contracts
Currently, the PEC, in coordination with the City Attorney’s Office, is drafting a local ethics ordinance for the City of Oakland. The PEC seeks public feedback on what should be included in the ordinance.