Some Florida Counties Have Stricter Ethics Laws than State
As Florida lawmakers take up ethics reform, a new report is showing county governments often have stricter standards than the state does.
The LeRoy Collins Institute at Florida State University and the advocacy group Integrity Florida Thursday released a survey of ethics policy in 45 counties.
They found some counties requiring ethics training for elected officials and procurement policies that go beyond state law. Some have their own ethics commissions or inspectors general.Collins Institute Director Carol Weissert said it's not a coincidence that some counties with tightest standards have a history of corruption by elected officials.
"In many of these instances, these reforms did follow corruption", Weissert said. "But I think what we’re seeing counties where they’re not having corruption and they’re still trying to make these changes."
Between 2000 and 2010, Florida led the nation in federal public corruption convictions.
Senate President Don Gaetz and House Speaker Will Weatherford have created new ethics committees to propose measures for the 2013 legislative session.