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January 04, 2011

Executive Order #3 requires certain State government executives to participate in "ethics training" conducted by the Commission on Public Integrity

Executive Order 8-3 requires certain State government executives to participate in "ethics training" conducted by the Commission on Public Integrity

Among his first acts as Governor, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed an Executive Order, Executive Order 8-3, requiring all Executive Chamber staff and other top state officials to participate in ethics training offered by the Commission on Public Integrity. Individuals covered by EO 8-3 includes agency commissioners and their respective counsels and ethics officers.

The training, which will focus on the rules about serving in government. will be available beginning no later than January 31st and must be completed within sixty days.

"Honor and integrity will be a hallmark of this administration, and I am confident that we have assembled a team that reflects that commitment," Governor Cuomo said. "Nonetheless, it is imperative that Chamber staff and other high ranking government officials be versed in the ethics rules and regulations that apply to them. Top government employees should have no questions, no gray areas, and no possibility of confusion regarding what is proper and what is not."

The Executive Order also requires officials to participate in this ethics training every two years.

The text of the Executive Order follows:


EXECUTIVE ORDER -- No. 3 ETHICS TRAINING

WHEREAS, all New York State taxpayers and residents and all those who depend on New York State government services have the right to expect that government programs will be administered and managed with the highest degree of professionalism;

WHEREAS, it is the obligation of every New York State officer and employee to pursue a course of conduct that will not engender public concern as to whether the individual is engaged in acts that may violate his or her public trust;

WHEREAS, officers and employees of the Executive Chamber, commissioners of New York State agencies, counsel to New York State agencies and ethics officers of New York State agencies are subject to certain ethical statutes and rules, including but not limited to the New York State Code of Ethics, statutory restrictions on business and professional activities and opinions issued by the New York State Commission on Public Integrity;

WHEREAS, officers and employees of the Executive Chamber, commissioners of New York State agencies, counsel to New York State agencies and ethics officers of New York State agencies play an important role in ensuring ethics compliance by all State officers and employees;

WHEREAS, New York State has a responsibility to ensure that its officers and employees are versed in the ethical statutes and rules that apply to them; and

WHEREAS, it is appropriate to take steps to ensure that employees and officers maintain the highest ethical and professional standards;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor of the State of New York, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the State of New York, do hereby order as follows:

A. Definitions

1. “Agency” shall mean any state agency, department, office, board, bureau, division, committee, council or office.

2. “Covered Employees” shall mean all officers and employees working in the Executive Chamber in the office of the Governor, commissioners of New York State agencies, counsel to New York State agencies and ethics officers of New York State agencies.

3. “Officers and employees” shall have the meaning given to “state officer or employee” in Section 73 of the Public Officers Law.

B. Ethics Training

1. Every Covered Employee shall participate in an ethics training within sixty days of when such training is prepared and available. The ethics training program will be prepared and available no later than January 31, 2011.

2. New Covered Employees shall participate in such ethics training within sixty days of the later of commencing their employment or when such training is prepared and available.

3. Such training shall include a discussion of the provisions of Sections 73, 73-A, 74 and 78 of the Public Officers Law and Sections 75-b and 107 of the Civil Service Law.

4. Every Covered Employee shall participate in an ethics training every two years following his or her initial training session pursuant to this order.

5. Covered Employees shall submit a signed statement certifying their participation in each training session pursuant to this order, which statements shall be placed in their personnel files.

6. The Executive Chamber shall coordinate with the ethics officers of state agencies, and with the Commission on Public Integrity, to establish regular training sessions sufficient to allow affected individuals to comply with this order.

C. Penalties

Any violation of this order may result in dismissal or other appropriate sanction as determined by the appointing officer of the individual committing such violation.

CAUTION

Subsequent court and administrative rulings, or changes to laws, rules and regulations may have modified or clarified or vacated or reversed the decisions summarized here. Accordingly, these summaries should be Shepardized® or otherwise checked to make certain that the most recent information is being considered by the reader.
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New York Public Personnel Law Blog Editor Harvey Randall served as Principal Attorney, New York State Department of Civil Service; Director of Personnel, SUNY Central Administration; Director of Research, Governor’s Office of Employee Relations; and Staff Judge Advocate General, New York Guard. Consistent with the Declaration of Principles jointly adopted by a Committee of the American Bar Association and a Committee of Publishers and Associations, the material posted to this blog is presented with the understanding that neither the publisher nor NYPPL and, or, its staff and contributors are providing legal advice to the reader and in the event legal or other expert assistance is needed, the reader is urged to seek such advice from a knowledgeable professional.
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