June 15, 2017 •

Orange County, CA Opens Campaign Finance and Ethics Commission

Orange County’s Office of Campaign Finance and Ethics Commission is now open. In 2016, voters approved a measure to create the Campaign Finance and Ethics Commission to provide oversight of the county’s campaign finance, lobbyist, and ethics ordinances. Denah Hoard […]

Orange County’s Office of Campaign Finance and Ethics Commission is now open. In 2016, voters approved a measure to create the Campaign Finance and Ethics Commission to provide oversight of the county’s campaign finance, lobbyist, and ethics ordinances.

Denah Hoard was named as the Executive Director of the commission and the county is currently in the process of seeking commissioners.

All lobbyist registrations and updates must now be conducted through the commission. A new lobbyist registration portal is scheduled to go live June 16, 2017. The commission will send emails to current lobbyists with the link to the new website and directions to activate their accounts.

Further information can be found at www.ocgov.com/gov/ocethics/.

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June 30, 2016 •

Orange County, CA Starts to Lay Groundwork for Ethics Commission

The Orange County Board of Supervisors approved a first reading of an ordinance to establish a county ethics commission. The ordinance was introduced after the passage of Measure A, which called for the county to amend its charter and campaign […]

Seal of Orange CountyThe Orange County Board of Supervisors approved a first reading of an ordinance to establish a county ethics commission.

The ordinance was introduced after the passage of Measure A, which called for the county to amend its charter and campaign finance ordinance to establish a five-member commission to provide administrative oversight of county ethics and campaign ordinances.

Discussions at the ordinance’s first reading mostly dealt with staff and budget issues relating to the commission, and there is no timeline yet for when the commission will actually be up and running. The ordinance is scheduled for a second reading and possible adoption on July 12, 2016.

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June 8, 2016 •

Orange County Voters Approve County Ethics Commission

On June 7, Orange County voters approved Measure A to create a county ethics commission. The measure amends the County’s charter and campaign finance ordinance to establish a five-member commission that will provide administrative oversight of county ethics and campaign […]

Seal of Orange CountyOn June 7, Orange County voters approved Measure A to create a county ethics commission.

The measure amends the County’s charter and campaign finance ordinance to establish a five-member commission that will provide administrative oversight of county ethics and campaign ordinances.

Voters widely supported the measure, with 70 percent voting in favor of the proposal.

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November 17, 2015 •

Orange County, California Considering Creation of Ethics Commission

The Orange County Board of Supervisors approved a ballot measure which would create an ethics commission for the county. A newly created ethics commission would oversee the enforcement of the county’s campaign finance ordinance. Voters will have the opportunity to […]

Seal of Orange CountyThe Orange County Board of Supervisors approved a ballot measure which would create an ethics commission for the county. A newly created ethics commission would oversee the enforcement of the county’s campaign finance ordinance.

Voters will have the opportunity to approve the measure on June 7, 2016, the date of the presidential primary election.

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November 16, 2015 •

State and Federal Communications Has Three Staff Members Receive AGRP Professional Lobbying Certificate

State and Federal Communications is pleased to announce the following individuals received their Professional Lobbying Certificate at the AGRP Annual Meeting. Michael Beckett, Esq., George Ticoras, Esq., and John Cozine, Esq. received their certificates after completing the year-long Lobbying Certificate […]

AGRPState and Federal Communications is pleased to announce the following individuals received their Professional Lobbying Certificate at the AGRP Annual Meeting.

Michael Beckett, Esq., George Ticoras, Esq., and John Cozine, Esq. received their certificates after completing the year-long Lobbying Certificate program. Since 2008, 11 staff from the company have completed the program, which is the only certificate program for the government relations professional that covers the wide range of activities that comprise modern government relations.

Through 14 courses over a year, participants have the opportunity to get the baseline knowledge of the numerous topics that need to be known by lobbyists and grassroots practitioners. Within those courses, five are required that cover Ethics of Advocacy, LDA & Compliance, PAC & Campaign Fundraising, Congressional Rules & Procedure and Communications & Media.

The Association of Government Relations Professionals (AGRP) is the national professional society dedicated exclusively to government relations, public policy and lobbying. AGRP’s mission is to enhance the development of the profession, competence, and high ethical standards for advocates in the public policy arena; and to collectively address the challenges affecting the First Amendment right to “petition the Government for redress of grievances.” For more information, visit http://grprofessionals.org.

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July 28, 2015 •

Formation of Ethics Commission Being Considered in Orange County, CA

A voter initiative is being developed in Orange County, California, to create a county ethics commission. The commission would enforce campaign finance limits for countywide offices as well as public ethics, including gifts and conflicts of interest. The commission would […]

Seal of Orange CountyA voter initiative is being developed in Orange County, California, to create a county ethics commission. The commission would enforce campaign finance limits for countywide offices as well as public ethics, including gifts and conflicts of interest.

The commission would also have a hotline where citizens could provide tips regarding ethics issues and would have the power to subpoena witnesses and documents.

If the initiative qualifies, it would appear on the November 2016 ballot. A version of the proposed initiative is available here.

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November 6, 2014 •

Orange County Approves Measure to Employ FPPC

The county has passed a proposal to employ the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) for monitoring and enforcement of county ethics laws. However, even though Measure E passed with 56.5 percent of the vote, the FPPC does not currently have […]

Seal of Orange CountyThe county has passed a proposal to employ the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) for monitoring and enforcement of county ethics laws. However, even though Measure E passed with 56.5 percent of the vote, the FPPC does not currently have the authority to contract with the county.

Recent grand jury reports recommended the establishment of an ethics commission for Orange County and the last grand jury specifically recommended against hiring the FPPC. If a contract is authorized by the Legislature, Orange will become the second county behind San Bernardino to employ the FPPC.

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September 16, 2014 •

Orange County, California Board Still Hoping for FPPC Help

The Board of Supervisors remains in disagreement with 2013-2014 grand jury reports calling for a county ethics commission. The board remains committed to a proposal to employ the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) for monitoring and enforcement of county ethics […]

Seal of Orange CountyThe Board of Supervisors remains in disagreement with 2013-2014 grand jury reports calling for a county ethics commission. The board remains committed to a proposal to employ the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) for monitoring and enforcement of county ethics laws. Although the FPPC proposal will appear on county ballots in November, the FPPC will lack the authority to contract with the county even if the proposal passes.

Senate Bill 1226 was introduced in the California Legislature to allow the FPPC to contract with counties, but was eventually amended and passed as a veterans licensing bill. The June grand jury report and the board’s proposed response is available here.

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February 5, 2014 •

Orange County, California Board Pursuing FPPC Enforcement

The Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday, February 4, to pursue outsourcing the enforcement of political ethics to the state’s Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC). Officials will ask the state Legislature to authorize the FPPC to enforce county ethics ordinances. The […]

Seal of Orange County

The Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday, February 4, to pursue outsourcing the enforcement of political ethics to the state’s Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC). Officials will ask the state Legislature to authorize the FPPC to enforce county ethics ordinances.

The unanimous vote was in response to a 2013 grand jury report titled, “A Call for Ethical Standards: Corruption in Orange County.”

Supporters of the approach cite San Bernardino County, which recently contracted with the FPPC to audit county campaigns and to prosecute ethics violations. The grand jury’s proposal would also give an independent authority the power to recommend ordinance changes concerning conflicts of interest, gifts, contract procurement, campaign finance, and lobbying.

 

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October 11, 2012 •

Orange County Mayor Proposes Lobbyist Texting Reforms

Calls for record keeping of texts to county phones

Orange CountyOrange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs is calling for measures to monitor and prevent lobbyists from texting county commissioners during meetings. The county commission voted in September to delay putting a measure requiring employers to provide employees with sick time on the ballot. Three of the four commissioners who voted to delay the measure acknowledged that they were texting with lobbyists opposed to the measure during the meeting, and later deleted a number of those texts.

Mayor Jacobs released a memo stating that she ordered a system to be set up to archive text messages from county phones. She is also calling for the county to study how other governments address electronic lobbying during meetings, in consideration of a potential ban on such discussions.

Advocates for the proposed sick time ballot initiative have filed suit claiming that the county commissioners violated state public record and open meetings laws, and asking the court to set aside the vote on the measure.

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February 22, 2011 •

Increased Transparency Coming to the O.C.

County Lobbyists Must Register

Cities in Orange County, California

Starting July 1, those in Orange County, California who are seeking to influence county government will be required to register with the Board of Supervisors. Under the new law, county lobbyists must register within 10 days of commencing lobbying activity and renew these registrations annually.

The registration fee will be $75 for an initial registration and $50 for each annual renewal thereafter. Orange County is the largest municipality in the state without a system for monitoring and disclosing lobbying activity. The regulation does not apply to those lobbying on behalf of nonprofit organizations.

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