Ethics commissions serve a vital role in democracy by preserving the public’s trust in government at the state and local levels.
Ethics commissions have been a staple of American democratic accountability for more than 50 years.
Ethics commissions have been a staple of American democratic accountability for more than 50 years. The commissions promote voter confidence in policymakers and political institutions by ensuring that the groups under their jurisdiction follow ethics laws. They are “watchdogs for the public,” ensuring that “conflicts of interest are exposed, financial dealings are done ‘in the daylight’ and the decision-making process is transparent.” The work of ethics commissions secures the public’s trust and confidence, helping to make sure that public officials prioritize the interests of the public.
These institutions uphold transparency principles, enforce laws and rules intended to preserve the public’s trust, and train vast government workforces on how to adhere to those laws and rules. But limitations on staff, technology, funding, and other resources create challenges for ethics commissions as they work to fulfill their important missions.
CLC collaborates with ethics commissions across the country to provide solutions to these challenges. The proven tools we identify are suitable for ethics commissions of all sizes and budgetary constraints. These tools have worked for ethics commissions across the country, and CLC can help you implement these changes in your jurisdiction and connect you to those who have seen on-the-ground success.