March 21, 2016 •
Proposed Bill Would Allow Colorado Independent Ethics Commission to Investigate Complaints
The Colorado Independent Ethics Commission is coming under harsh criticism in the wake of records released by the state auditor, with some claiming it is unethical. Often, the burden of investigating and presenting a case for an ethics violation falls upon the person filing the complaint. As an alternative, state Rep. Beth McCann is sponsoring House Bill 1216 to enhance the ability of the commission to investigate public officials who skirt the ethics rules.
One of the more specific issues addressed in HB 1216 is the role of the attorney general. Currently, the commission relies on the legal assistance of the attorney general; if the person accused of an ethics violation is an elected official, the attorney general must also provide legal assistance to the official. HB 1216 would require the panel to retain or employ independent counsel rather than rely on the attorney general.
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