Ethics training for elected officials now required by law

400-Got-EthicsLast year, Historic City News reported that the Florida legislature passed new ethics legislation requiring that Commissioners and other Constitutional Officers take four hours of Ethics programming each calendar year.

In conjunction with Legislative Day on Thursday, March 27th, the Florida Association of Counties informed local reporters that they will hold the first of three Ethics Workshops being offered this year; in fulfillment of the new requirement for local government employees.

As part of their Certified County Commissioner program, Florida Association of Counties has offered a comprehensive 6-hour mandatory Ethics, Public Records and Sunshine Law course since 1996. Those enrolled in the program will also receive 6 core credits for completing the workshop. ACC Graduates will also receive Torchbearer points.

“Our existing course meets the requirements addressed in this new legislation,” a Florida Association of Counties spokesperson told Historic City News. “We are making it easier for commissioners and constitutional officers to meet their training requirements by now holding at least three ethics workshops instead of just one a year.”

The updated program includes expert speakers from the Attorney General’s Office and the Florida Commission on Ethics to explain Florida’s stringent laws. Participants will learn ethics requirements for elected officials, understand the Sunshine Law and Public Records Law, learn about reporting requirements, and become familiar with the process of an ethics complaint.

“The Association helps counties effectively serve and represent Floridians by strengthening and preserving county home rule through advocacy, education and collaboration,” St Johns County Commissioner Bill McClure told Historic City News.

Looking forward, the Association’s plans are to offer most of these programs as either pre-conference or post-conference events in conjunction with Legislative Day (March), Annual (June) and Legislative Conference (November).

Workshop participants will have to pay a registration fee of $125 to cover lunch and all class materials. The class is open to commissioners, county staff and all other constitutional officers.

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