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Government Ethics

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By New York Times | December 4, 1990
WASHINGTON -- The federal ethics agency is telling government workers that they can not accept payment for giving speeches or writing articles, even if the subject is completely unrelated to their work."
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NEWS
April 2, 2012
There is a certain reliable pattern to each Maryland General Assembly session: The House and Senate will be at odds, 90 days worth of legislating will be condensed to about three weeks, and most bills of substance will be deferred or delayed. It's also predictable that at some point, local governments will groan and moan about how state government is usurping their authority. Well, with less than a week left in the session, it's that time of year again. Local leaders from Western Maryland to the Eastern Shore see Annapolis trampling local decision-making rights from land planning to government ethics, and they don't much like it. At some level, it's understandable that county executives, commissioners and council members want to make their choices unencumbered by state and federal mandates.
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NEWS
By New York Times News Service | August 1, 1994
WASHINGTON -- A nonpartisan federal ethics agency has concluded that Treasury officials violated no ethics regulations when they briefed White House officials about an investigation into a savings and loan with ties to President Clinton and his wife.But the agency found the meetings troubling and said that some senior officials did not fully understand the ethics rules.The report was prepared by the Office of Government Ethics, the main executive branch agency for handling ethics issues, which is staffed by career civil servants.
NEWS
by Annie Linskey | February 3, 2012
The Baltimore Sun today published a story outlining a handful of companies that have given big bucks to Gov. Martin O'Malley's Democratic Governors Association , and also have strong interests before the state . As we point out in our story, there's nothing improper about the gifts, though government ethics types don't like the practice. The donations haven't guaranteed success, in some cases companies opened their wallets but didn't get anything in return. (It reminds us of the famous quote by Jesse Unruh, the longtime speaker of the California House: “If you can't drink a lobbyist's whiskey, take his money, sleep with his women and still vote against him in the morning, you don't belong in politics.”)
NEWS
by Annie Linskey | February 3, 2012
The Baltimore Sun today published a story outlining a handful of companies that have given big bucks to Gov. Martin O'Malley's Democratic Governors Association , and also have strong interests before the state . As we point out in our story, there's nothing improper about the gifts, though government ethics types don't like the practice. The donations haven't guaranteed success, in some cases companies opened their wallets but didn't get anything in return. (It reminds us of the famous quote by Jesse Unruh, the longtime speaker of the California House: “If you can't drink a lobbyist's whiskey, take his money, sleep with his women and still vote against him in the morning, you don't belong in politics.”)
NEWS
By David Willman and David Willman,LOS ANGELES TIMES | August 5, 2005
WASHINGTON - Ethics officials at the National Institutes of Health often approved senior scientists' requests to moonlight for drug companies and other outside organizations without gathering adequate documentation to help judge whether the arrangements posed conflicts of interest, federal inspectors have found. In 81 percent of the recent outside arrangements reviewed by the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, ethics officials were found to have approved the deals on the basis of "limited" information.
NEWS
By Kate McKenna and Kate McKenna,States News Service | October 30, 1991
Revised conduct rules critiquedWASHINGTON -- Changes in the rules covering membership in professional associations were the chief issue addressed in last week's House hearing on proposed new standards of ethical conduct for executive branch employees.The Office of Government Ethics has received more than 1,000 sets of comments on the proposed revisions to the federal standards of conduct rules and more than 900 of these dealt with the provisions regarding professional associations -- an interest that Stephen D. Potts, government ethics director, says resulted from mischaracterizations in the press.
NEWS
By Nicole Weisensee and Nicole Weisensee,States News Service | October 2, 1991
Membership limits opposedSen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., has sent a letter to the director of the office of government ethics expressing her opposition to proposed rules that would limit federal employees' memberships professional associations."
NEWS
By Mike Phillips and Mick Rood and Mike Phillips and Mick Rood,States News Service | January 9, 1991
1,000 points of contentionWASHINGTON -- The White House has asked all federal employees to report their after-hours volunteer activities, bringing President Bush's "1,000 Points of Light" campaign slogan home to the government.The White House has directed all agencies to include volunteeactivities in their reports to the president, according to administration sources and a memorandum issued to Justice Department managers last month by the attorney general's office."The idea is simply to gather information that augments the morofficial routine departmental business that is of interest to the president, so that he will be able to know of and to praise the many substantial good works of federal employees," said a White House official.
NEWS
By ROGER SIMON | March 12, 1993
Ethics are to journalism what Velveeta is to cheese.Which is to say that journalists have ethics, but you don't want to sniff them too closely.Not truly a profession, journalism lacks any universal ethical code.The Founding Fathers wanted it this way even though the press in their time was venal and scurrilous. That's how much faith the Founding Fathers had in the concept of press freedom.And how do the journalists of today reward that faith?We dress up in tuxedos and ball gowns and invite bigshots to fancy dinners where the president of the United States is compelled to read jokes written for him by his staff and then undergo good-natured ribbing that he pretends not to despise.
NEWS
October 24, 2011
Politicians are a lot like middle school students. The moment you think they are mature and thoughtful enough to do the responsible thing, they are bound to disappoint. As any experienced parent or president of the United States will tell you, better to "trust but verify. " The wisdom of this was made abundantly clear by the recent disclosure that Baltimore County Councilman Kenneth N. Oliver has been working for the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development. On its face, that would not seem to be all that big a deal (it's not like he was caught spying for the former Soviet Union or selling drugs on the courthouse lawn)
NEWS
By David Willman and David Willman,LOS ANGELES TIMES | August 5, 2005
WASHINGTON - Ethics officials at the National Institutes of Health often approved senior scientists' requests to moonlight for drug companies and other outside organizations without gathering adequate documentation to help judge whether the arrangements posed conflicts of interest, federal inspectors have found. In 81 percent of the recent outside arrangements reviewed by the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, ethics officials were found to have approved the deals on the basis of "limited" information.
NEWS
By Doug Donovan and Doug Donovan,SUN STAFF | May 25, 2004
The City Council moved one step closer last night to final passage of a wholesale revision of city government's ethics law. The bill, titled "Ethics - Raising the Bar," calls for applying the law's financial disclosure requirements to 1,450 city employees, an increase of 430 people from the current law. Last night, council members debated whether the bill went too far by requiring certain council staff to file those forms with the city's ethics board....
NEWS
By Elise Armacost | November 3, 1996
NORMAN G. MYERS Sr. is a good man, the kind of man who gets asked to volunteer for panels and charitable organizations because everyone knows he'll do it, and do it conscientiously. Not long ago Anne Arundel County Executive John G. Gary asked him to serve on the county ethics commission, an unpaid, unglamorous job. Mr. Myers said yes. Today, one can hardly blame him if he regrets being so agreeable.Mr. Gary has been roundly criticized recently by The Sun and the Annapolis newspaper for four ethics-panel appointments, including Mr. Myers', on grounds that the four had ties to him. The Sun called them ''cronies.
NEWS
By Susan Baer and Susan Baer,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | November 8, 1995
WASHINGTON -- Federal investigators who worked on a Whitewater ethics report said yesterday they were astonished when they learned that former Treasury Secretary Lloyd Bentsen gave the White House a draft of the report and related interview transcripts last year.They said his actions violated their normal procedures.But Mr. Bentsen, returning to Washington yesterday to defend his actions and his "30 years of public service" before the Senate Whitewater Committee, insisted he acted properly.
NEWS
By New York Times News Service | August 1, 1994
WASHINGTON -- A nonpartisan federal ethics agency has concluded that Treasury officials violated no ethics regulations when they briefed White House officials about an investigation into a savings and loan with ties to President Clinton and his wife.But the agency found the meetings troubling and said that some senior officials did not fully understand the ethics rules.The report was prepared by the Office of Government Ethics, the main executive branch agency for handling ethics issues, which is staffed by career civil servants.
NEWS
By Penny Bender and Penny Bender,States News Service | October 16, 1991
What you can do at the officeAfter receiving hundreds of complaints, the Office of Government Ethics probably will revise a proposal that would prohibit federal workers from participating in professional organizations during business hours.Despite the protests, the final rule won't change substantially, // warned Donald E. Campbell, deputy director of the office."I'm sure there are going to be certain modifications," he said. "Many agencies have had such a rule for a long time. This is not just a rule we pulled out of our hats."
NEWS
By Susan Baer and Susan Baer,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | November 8, 1995
WASHINGTON -- Federal investigators who worked on a Whitewater ethics report said yesterday they were astonished when they learned that former Treasury Secretary Lloyd Bentsen gave the White House a draft of the report and related interview transcripts last year.They said his actions violated their normal procedures.But Mr. Bentsen, returning to Washington yesterday to defend his actions and his "30 years of public service" before the Senate Whitewater Committee, insisted he acted properly.
NEWS
By ROGER SIMON | March 12, 1993
Ethics are to journalism what Velveeta is to cheese.Which is to say that journalists have ethics, but you don't want to sniff them too closely.Not truly a profession, journalism lacks any universal ethical code.The Founding Fathers wanted it this way even though the press in their time was venal and scurrilous. That's how much faith the Founding Fathers had in the concept of press freedom.And how do the journalists of today reward that faith?We dress up in tuxedos and ball gowns and invite bigshots to fancy dinners where the president of the United States is compelled to read jokes written for him by his staff and then undergo good-natured ribbing that he pretends not to despise.
NEWS
By Kate McKenna and Kate McKenna,States News Service | October 30, 1991
Revised conduct rules critiquedWASHINGTON -- Changes in the rules covering membership in professional associations were the chief issue addressed in last week's House hearing on proposed new standards of ethical conduct for executive branch employees.The Office of Government Ethics has received more than 1,000 sets of comments on the proposed revisions to the federal standards of conduct rules and more than 900 of these dealt with the provisions regarding professional associations -- an interest that Stephen D. Potts, government ethics director, says resulted from mischaracterizations in the press.
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