New York Mills
Oneida County, NY
§ 16-8. Board established.
There is hereby established a Board of Ethics consisting of three members to be appointed by the Mayor and who shall serve without compensation and at the pleasure of the Board of Trustees. A majority of such members shall be persons other than officers or employees of the Village of New York Mills, but shall include at least one member who is an elected or appointed officer or employee of the Village of New York Mills.
§ 16-9. Powers and duties.
The Board of Ethics shall have the powers and duties prescribed by Article 18 of the General Municipal Law and shall render advisory opinions to the officers and employees of the Village of New York Mills with respect to Article Eighteen of the General Municipal Law and any Code of Ethics adopted pursuant to such article, under such rules and regulations as the Board may prescribe. In addition, the Board may make recommendations with respect to the drafting and adoption of a Code of Ethics or amendments thereto upon request of the Board of Trustees.
§ 16-10. Limitations on requests for opinions.
Board of Ethics may adopt rules and regulations relative to the conduct of its business but may only render advisory opinions subject to these limitations:
A. Requests for opinions shall be in writing.
B. Requests or inquiries must originate with a municipal officer or employee.
C. Requests or inquiries must relate to the conflict of interest law or a Code of Ethics.
D. A county board may not act with respect to a request from any municipality within the county having its own Board of Ethics except at the request of that board.
§ 16-11. Opinions to be advisory only.
It should be noted that the law defined and qualifies any opinion rendered by a board of ethics as "advisory" and hence not a binding determination. This is no way minimizes the importance or potential impact of the opinion. The opinion may have an extraordinary effect on the persons involved or may be the subject of inordinate public attention and therefor in all instances, must be regarded as a decision made by an impartial and objective group which has acted only after thorough study of the law, the facts and other evidence, including testimony when necessary of a potential violator. Board members should be mindful that the law authorizing Boards of Ethics has as its objective "to protect innocent public officers from unwarranted attacks on their integrity."
§ 16-12. Rules and regulations.
Rules and regulations should be adopted to govern the conduct of meetings of a Board. These may include the following:
A. The selection and terms of office of a Chairman and secretary and such other officers are deemed necessary if such designations have not been made by the governing board.
B. The number of Board members constituting a quorum.
C. The number of Board members necessarily in affirmative agreement to render an opinion.
D. The form and content of records of proceedings and other Board records.
E. The form and content of requests for opinions which may include indication that certain municipal officials or employees have been advised of such request.
F. The form and content of opinions to include:
(1) A full statement of facts;
(2) A full statement of pertinent law and/or or a Code of Ethics; and
(3) A conclusion.
G. Distribution of opinions.