Board of Ethics
August 22, 2002
DENVER BOARD OF ETHICS
MEETING OF AUGUST 22, 2002
I. Chair Harry MacLean called the meeting to order at 1:40 pm. Members Charles Savage, Christopher Weimer, and Denise Maes were present. Carolyn Lievers was absent.
II. It was moved, seconded and passed unanimously to approve the minutes of the July 25, 2002 Board of Ethics meeting.
III. Staff Director Michael Henry expanded on his written Director’s report. He indicated that the Board of Ethics’ office is expected to move to the new building at 201 West Colfax on or about November 14, 2002. He and Charles Savage also informed the Board about the progress of the ethics training for all City employees, which was discussed at the Ethics Training Oversight Committee meeting on August 20.
IV. Michael Henry discussed the written budget report and advised the Board that the Board of Ethics has been given an exemption from the latest 3% budget reduction request; however, the request for additional programmatic funds for printing the 2003 ethics handbook, providing ethics training for the incoming City Council and administration after the 2003 City election and for funds to improve the Board’s website are now in doubt.
V. Professor Roy Wood of the University of Denver presented a paper that he and Professor Spoma Jovanovic of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro prepared entitled “Findings from the August 2002 Assessment of the Denver Ethics Initiative.” The paper summarized and analyzed in-depth interviews with a sample of 16 Denver employees concerning their views about the Code of Ethics, Board of Ethics, ethics training and ethical climate of the City and County of Denver. Copies are available from the Board of Ethics office.
VI. Harry MacLean and Michael Henry presented a document entitled Goals and Action Plan for 2003 for Board of Ethics which sets out a work plan for the remainder of 2002 and for 2003. After Board members volunteered to work individually on several of the goals, Charles Savage moved and Christopher Weimer seconded to adopt the Goals and Action Plan for 2003.
VII. Professor Roy Wood indicated that he and Professor Spoma Jovanovic would like to offer to assist the Board with some of the 2003 goals as part of their action/research project. In particular, they offer to assist the Board in 1) improving public information about the Code of Ethics; 2) development of a plan for ethics training for the new Mayor, City Council, other elected officials, Cabinet members and agency heads and 3) continuing their work to assess the entire Denver ethics initiative. The consensus of the Board was that the Board would like to continue the work with Professors Jovanovic and Wood on these items, with details to be negotiated later.
VIII. Michael Henry presented a draft charter amendment which would formalize the existence of the Code of Ethics and the Board of Ethics in the City Charter. He explained that the Charter Review Committee will be reviewing several confusing and contradictory charter provisions pertaining to conflicts of interest at the next meeting on September 3 and that Councilwoman Kathleen MacKenzie, the chair of the committee, has invited the Board of Ethics to provide comments and suggestions. Some Board
members suggested that the various conflict of interest provisions should be eliminated entirely, so that the Code of Ethics could set more clear ethical standards.
IX. Charles Savage led a discussion of whether the Board of Ethics members should file financial disclosure forms. After the discussion, Charles Savage moved and Christopher Weimer seconded that the Board of Ethics should recommend that the members of the Board voluntarily prepare and file with the Staff Director of the Board by November 1, 2002, the same financial disclosure form required of Denver elected officials and members of the Mayor’s cabinet. The motion passed with Charles Savage, Christopher Weimer and Harry MacLean voting yes and Denise Maes voting no.
X. Rose Ceja-Aragon, the Staff Director of the Public Safety Review Commission, answered questions from Board members regarding Case 02-35, a request for an advisory opinion or waiver from Denise DeForest, the Chair of the Public Safety Review Commission.
XI. Denise Maes moved and Charles Savage seconded to go into executive session to deliberate on Cases 02-33, 02-34, and 02-35. The motion passed unanimously.
XII. The meeting adjourned at 4:10 pm.
Approved by Board of Ethics on September 26, 2002.