November 29, 2011 •
Georgia Ethics Agency Working to Catch-Up
The overhaul split the commission staff into an administrative division, an investigative division, and a compliance-education division. In addition to these changes, a change in the reporting law has resulted in hundreds of delinquencies by local officials who are filing with the state for the first time. The agency has been required to devote time and resources to contact anyone in arrears by certified mail.
Meanwhile, larger investigations have stalled. Earlier this month the commission dismissed a case filed in 2004 because the statute of limitations had expired. A more recent complaint filed against a lobbyist who failed to timely file or register and who paid for a state official’s travel to Europe is now 10 months old and delayed.
Executive Secretary Holly LaBerge is expected to hire staff auditors and receive assistance from the attorney general’s office to aid prosecutorial efforts.
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