Transparency & Ethics Platform

I have proposed that our city council create an ethics and sunshine task force.  The task force will be charged with making our government more open, transparent and inclusive and preventing conflicts of interest by elected and appointed officials.

The task force will be asked to look at best practices in other cities, seek input from residents and experts, and propose an ordinance to the Palm Springs City Council.  I will request that the following ideas be considered by the task force to ensure that Palm Springs has the most ethical, transparent and inclusive government possible.

  1. Elected and appointed officials, as well as candidates, statements of financial interest and reports containing the names, occupations, employers, and amounts of their campaign contributors shall be posted on the city’s website.  I will lead by example and have posted this information on my campaign website at www.geoffkors.com.
  2. Elected and appointed officials shall state, in detail, their reasons for recusing themselves from a vote and the City Attorney shall publicly state whether such recusal is or is not appropriate.
  3. Sales of City property or other assets that require approval of city council shall be put out to bid and be voted on by council as a non-consent item.
  4. A grant application process, including criteria for awarding, shall be created and followed for all grants made by the city.
  5. All appointed commissions, boards and committees shall meet after 5:00 pm to allow residents who work during the most common working hours to attend and participate.
  6. Meetings of city appointed commissions, boards, committees, task forces and similar entities shall be publicly noticed and open to the public.
  7. Elected and appointed officials shall be required to recuse themselves from discussions, deliberations, and votes related to matters where they have an economic interest, a financial interest, of if they are employed by or sitting on the board of directors of an entity (or related entity) that is seeking or opposing a contract, funding or other matter being voted on by the city.
  8. Appointed officials on commissions, boards and committees shall be required to recuse themselves if they have discussed a matter, outside of a publicly noticed meeting, with an applicant or opponent of an applicant or their representatives, pending before their body. This will not apply if the meeting is informational in nature, arranged by a member of city staff, and city staff is present.  In this case the nature of the discussion and who was present shall be publicly stated prior to any deliberation or vote.
Since initially developing this plan, an additional item has come to my attention –
9. In order to be discussed at a council or commission meeting, staff reports must be made available to the public when the agenda for the meeting is published.  If the staff report is not made public with the agenda, the item must be tabled to allow the public sufficient time to review the staff report.

 

I believe in leading by example. In the name of full transparency, I have and will continue to post all of my financial disclosures on my campaign website HERE.

Check it out to view my statement of economic interests, and my campaign donors.