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Tag Archives: City of Austin Ethics Review Commission

Friday, March 29, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Ethics commission loses some duties

Austin’s Ethics Review Commission will no longer be looking at allegations of ethics violations related to most city employees. On Thursday, City Council approved changes to the ordinance governing the commission’s authority after ensuring that reports about such allegations would…

Wednesday, March 20, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Ethics violation raises questions about city laptop policies

DeShawn Scott, a temporary administrative specialist in the Public Works Department, left his position in December after the Office of the City Auditor opened an investigation into Scott’s use of his city computer for purposes related to his two outside…

Friday, March 15, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Ethics Commission looks into omission of PAC donation

How does one forget to report $10,000? That was the question of the evening for the Ethics Review Commission at its March 13 convocation.In a complaint filed by Fred Lewis last November, he accused the No on J political action…

Tuesday, February 19, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Despite statute of limitations, ethics commission moves forward with Rodriguez case

More than a year after Austinites and reporters raised questions about Frank Rodriguez’s continued ties to Latino HealthCare Forum, a nonprofit he founded while he was serving as a senior policy adviser for Mayor Steve Adler, the issue came before…

Thursday, February 14, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Ethics Review Commission dismisses case against Human Resources director

The city of Austin professes to have a “mother-friendly” work environment that supports new moms and working parents. However, a complaint filed in December by the Office of the City Auditor brings that policy into question.The complaint filed by Brian…

Tuesday, January 15, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

‘Valid’ ethics complaint dismissed for being unconstitutional

Last October, Mayor Steve Adler’s campaign manager, James Wick, filed an ethics complaint against Megaphone GPAC, a general purpose political action committee opposing the mayor’s re-election. At the time, several attorneys opined that the complaint would be dismissed due to…

Monday, January 14, 2019 by Austin Monitor

Reporter’s Notebook: The bonus no one wanted

Violations that make lawyers giggle… On Jan. 9, the Ethics Review Commission heard the preliminary case of DeShawn Scott, an administrative specialist in the Public Works Department, who used his city computer for purposes related to his own outside businesses: Texas…

Friday, January 11, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Austin Energy employee accused of fraud found to be ‘not in violation’

After three hours of discussion surrounding the definition of “intent” in application to fraud, the Ethics Review Commission found Curtis Graves, Austin Energy’s former superintendent of system operations, not in violation of city code by virtue of three votes.“You are…

Monday, December 17, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Camelback is back, but this time at the Ethics Review Commission

After so much contention and inflamed passions on both sides, it’s no surprise that the story of the Camelback planned unit development did not end with the Nov. 1 approval by Council.On Dec. 12, the Ethics Review Commission heard a…

Tuesday, November 20, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Ethics Review Commission declines to weigh in on city anti-discrimination and harassment policy

City Council recently asked the Ethics Review Commission to review its proposed amendments to the anti-discrimination/anti-harassment portion of the City Code, which includes language such as “No City official or employee shall engage in conduct or use language that is…

Wednesday, October 31, 2018 by Jo Clifton

City ethics rule may be unconstitutional

Mayor Steve Adler’s campaign manager filed an ethics complaint Tuesday against Megaphone GPAC, a general purpose political action committee opposing the mayor’s re-election. But it seems likely that the complaint will be dismissed, according to attorneys familiar with election law.Adler’s…

Monday, September 24, 2018 by Austin Monitor

Reporter’s Notebook: Who stands alone?

You can’t say that… During a discussion at Thursday’s City Council meeting about a city home repair program for low-income households, Mayor Steve Adler took an opportunity to remind those watching about the $250 million affordable housing bond that will…

Friday, September 21, 2018 by Chad Swiatecki

Ethics commission considers examining possible ‘dark money’ violation

Members of Austin’s Ethics Review Commission are eager to examine a potential violation of the city’s “dark money” campaign finance law that has generated press attention and speculation in city political circles in recent weeks.At Wednesday night’s meeting, Commissioner Debra…

Monday, August 13, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Final hearing scheduled for fraudulent vacation time case

After retiring in June of last year, Curtis Graves, a former superintendent of system operations at Austin Energy, found out that he was under investigation for his use of vacation and sick time by both Austin Energy’s internal Human Resources…

Tuesday, June 19, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Ethics Review Commission weighs in on potential charter changes

In the midst of discussions about soccer stadiums, CodeNEXT and the 2018 bond, the Charter Review Commission is asking citizens to consider one more thing: changes to the city charter.At its June 13 meeting, members of the Ethics Review Commission…

Monday, May 14, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Council adopts new rules for subpoenas

On Thursday, City Council adopted regulations that make it clear that the Ethics Review Commission may not seek information identifying whistleblowers or other witnesses in complaints about city officials or employees. In addition, Council designated the Council Audit and Finance…

Friday, March 23, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Commission: Former police monitor did not violate city policy

On Wednesday night, the Ethics Review Commission found that former police monitor Margo Frasier was not in violation of any city policy and did not impose any sanctions against her.By clearing Frasier’s name in a 7-2 vote, the commission took…

Friday, February 9, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Regret an ethics complaint? City may soon allow take-backs

On occasion, a complaint will come to the Ethics Review Commission only to be later followed by a request for withdrawal. However, according to current code, a request of this nature may not be honored.Concerned with the inability of plaintiffs to…

Thursday, February 8, 2018 by Jack Craver

Commission considers an independent watchdog agency for Austin

Saying that it is time for Austin to have a full-time watchdog, a task force tasked with proposing changes to the city charter is considering ways to establish an independent ethics agency.Currently in Austin, oversight of campaign finance filings and…

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Ex-Austin Energy employee found not guilty of ethics violation

After a drawn-out series of hearings over the last seven months, the Ethics Review Commission on Jan. 10 found that retired Austin Energy supervisor Stefan Sasko made no violation of the city’s ethics regulations.However, the ruling may have implications for…

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