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City of Tallahassee addresses priorities in ethics reform workshop

City of Tallahassee logo 2021
Posted at 9:48 PM, Feb 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-17 16:10:01-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Trust and transparency: it's two things that city commissioners say is top of mind for the City of Tallahassee.

On Wednesday, commissioners sat down with the Tallahassee Independent Ethics Board to look at recommendations regarding ethics reform.

The nearly three hour meeting focused on three main priorities: whistleblowers, lobbying ordinances, the definition of a lobbyist, and the misuse of position.

In March, Tallahassee commissioner's will discuss redefining the misuse of position.

That includes limiting violations of acts done outside the expected duties of public official or employee.

They'll also finetune who is subject to following guidance from the independent ethics board.

The topic today surrounded whether staff for the Community Redevelopment Agency and Blueprint Intergovernmental Agency are under the jurisdiction of the ethics board. While those two entities are separate from the Tallahassee commission, they are considered city employees.

Lastly, a look at changing how lobbyists interact in city hall. On the table is a fresh look at the definition and expectation of lobbyists. Lobbyists could also be required to keep up with meetings with government officials. Those meeting could become public record after three days.

Mayor John Dailey says workshops like the one Wednesday is all about making sure there's trust in city hall.

"We have been through a difficult time when it comes to ethics. Is the job done? No. That's why it's important to continue having these workshops. To continue working with the ethics board so we can continue moving forward," said Mayor Dailey.