Wednesday, June 9, 2010
THE PROSECUTION RESTS..... AND NOW ETHICS MATTER
If nothing else has been learned from the Perez corruption scandal, at least someone is paying attention to the City of Hartford's Ethics code.
Apparently Cirque du Soleil has offered complimentary admission to numerous City of Hartford officials and employees.
In a quick response, Hartford's Chief Operating Officer David Panagore sent out the following e-mail to Hartford Department heads and the City Council:
From: Panagore, David B.
Sent: Tuesday, June 08, 2010 1:36 PM
To: Dept Heads (City)
Subject: A COI Advisory
Many of you may have received an invitation to a private preview for Cirque du Soleil on June 16th (See below) . After conferring with the Corporation Counsel, I share the following advice and direction.
Accepting free tickets to an event falls within the ambit of the ethics code. Without knowing the value of each ticket, the provision in the Code proscribes receiving gifts aggrgegating more than $100 in any calendar year so with Cirque tickets one could run afoul of that prohibition pretty quickly. For example, any staffer who issues a permit for the Cirque show is well advised not to take tickets. Every employee of the City is covered by the Ethics Code and, quite simply, the better part of valor is simply to not accept any free tickets or other such gifts.
If you have any questions, please contact myself or John Rose.
If only he had been around a few years ago and could have changed "cirque du Soleil tickets" to "granite counter tops", the City could have avoided a lot of embarrassment and avoided a corruption trial.