A few days ago – Louisiana rises to top of ethics rankings
Louisiana continues to mine good will and potential economic capital from its rise in ethics rankings, with a national group ranking the state fifth-best in the U.S. for its good government, transparency and accountability laws.
BGA’s Jay Stewart said Louisiana ranked 44th in conflict of interest laws before sweeping changes in legislation this year.
And now – Ethics panel backs disclosure change
And this is the new ethics board – most of the others resigned because of the new disclosure laws! katy
Excerpts from news article –
Advocate Capitol News Bureau
Published: Oct 31, 2008
If the Louisiana Board of Ethics gets its way, public officials will be able to avoid providing taxpayers with estimates of their business interests when they fill out personal financial disclosure reports.
The disclosure forms recommended by the Ethics Board would require officials to report the percentage of ownership interest they have in businesses instead of estimating its value in financial ranges.
The decision to go the percentage route prompted the first split among new Ethics Board members as they reviewed the documents.
It also led one member to wonder how the panel could alter what he said is required by state law.
The issue now heads to the Legislature, where its ethics oversight committee gets a chance to recommend changes as part of the approval process.
Different sets of forms seek varying degrees of detail based on what’s required by recently approved disclosure laws.
The governor and statewide officials provide more information than legislators and members serving on an array of government boards and commissions are required to give.
“We are acting in a manner that would seem to be contrary to 20-plus years of understanding, at least for the governor’s disclosure,” Frazier said.
Board member Blake Monrose, of Lafayette, said the Legislature defined amount of interest when it inserted dollar categories for reporting by the governor, statewide officials, legislators and others.
“I don’t see how we can change the legislation,” said board member Jean Ingrassia, of Gonzales.
Full Article – http://www.2theadvocate.com/news/33620824.html?showAll=y&c=y