Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

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Integrity Florida Research Is Getting Results

Integrity Florida research is getting results. On June 15, the Florida Commission on Ethics set its 2013 legislative priorities and cited Integrity Florida research during the discussion. The Ethics Commission's top two priorities were both included as recommendations in the Integrity Florida research report Corruption Risk Report: Florida Ethics Laws: 1) improving fine enforcement for ethics law violations and 2) increasing maximum penalties for ethics law violations from $10,000 to $25,000.

The Ethics Commission adopted several other Integrity Florida recommendations for its 2013 legislative agenda, including the critically important ethics reform measure of giving the Ethics Commission the authority to self initiate investigations.

The 2013 legislative session is shaping up to be one where Florida has the potential to go from an 'F' grade to an 'A' on the State Integrity Investigation Florida Corruption Risk Report Card for Ethics Enforcement.  Florida will be on track for an 'A' grade if our state legislators give state ethics law enforcement officers the authority to initiate investigations, incorporate a report corruption hotline, increase penalties and give the Ethics Commission more tools for enforcement of fines.

Ethics Commissioner Matthew Carlucci, recently appointed to the Ethics Commission by Gov. Rick Scott, has already found a sponsor for the ethics fine enforcement bill, state Rep. Charles McBurney of Jacksonville.

Integrity Florida has been contacted by others in the legislative process who are working on additional ethics reform legislation.  We have also had several senior level meetings with the Scott Administration and we are hopeful that the Governor will prioritize ethics reform measures for the 2013 legislative session.

What others are saying:

"My staff has met with members of Integrity Florida.  We appreciate that they shared advanced summaries of their upcoming reports and look forward to seeing the completed product.  I believe the integrity of the state is important and that strong ethics laws are critical and will consider pursuing changes I believe will improve the state."  - Florida Governor Rick Scott

Gov. Rick Scott "...should come out in support of Integrity Florida's initiatives" - Bradenton Herald Editorial (Read More)   

"The Corruption State" - Gainesville Sun Editorial (Read More)    

"Florida needs an ethics law overhaul" - Ocala Star-Banner Editorial (Read More)   

"Now there appears to be at least a flicker of hope for the 2013 session." - Lakeland LedgerEditorial (Read More)    

"Time for ethics reforms" - South Florida Sun Sentinel Editorial (Read More)   

Florida Ethics Commission needs strong anti-corruption agenda - Orlando Sentinel Editorial (Read More

In Case You Missed It: Florida Alliance for Retired Americans adopts resolution on ethics in Florida government (Read More). 

In Case You Missed It: "...Integrity Florida is on the side of angels, doing work on the anti-corruption stage and urging Florida lawmakers to do something about our top-ranked status." -Pensacola News Journal Editorial (Read more ) 

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