Frequently Asked Questions

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS – BROWARD COUNTY CODE OF ETHICS

  1. When did the Code of Ethics take effect?
    January 2, 2012

  2. Who is subject to the Code of Ethics?
    Members of the Broward County Commission and all elected municipal officials in Broward County are subject to the Code of Ethics. The Code of Ethics does not yet apply to municipal advisory board members or public municipal employees.

    The Code of Ethics also does not apply to those municipalities that have a Charter provision governing the same subject matter to the extent of any conflicts.

  3. What disclosure forms does the Code of Ethics require elected municipal officials to file?
    Elected municipal officials must disclose all outside/concurrent employment (including any remuneration received therefrom), all charitable contribution fundraising, and all campaign fundraising for other candidates on forms created by the Broward County Attorney’s Office. These officials must also disclosure any communications with lobbyists that occurs outside of their governmental offices/premises. Elected municipal officials must certify annually that they have completed the eight (8) hour ethics training requirement.

    All disclosure forms are available on this website. The forms must be filed with the official’s city manager or city clerk and made available on the city’s website.

    Florida law also requires elected municipal officials to file disclosures related to financial interests, gifts and other matters. Please contact our office for additional information.

  4. When are elected municipal officials required to file the disclosure related to outside/concurrent employment?
    The Code of Ethics does not include a specific filing date for this disclosure. We have advised our municipal clients that this disclosure must be filed by July 1 of each year for the preceding calendar year.

  5. How is “remuneration” defined for purposes of the outside/concurrent employment disclosure?
    The Code of Ethics does not define “remuneration” for purposes of this disclosure. Our office has issued ethics advisory opinions providing the municipal elected officials that we represent with a definition of this term. Copies of our opinions are available on this website.

  6. What are the ethics training requirements for elected municipal officials?
    Elected municipal officials must obtain a minimum of eight (8) hours of continuing education training annually on the topic of public service ethics.

    Newly elected officials must complete a minimum of four (4) hours of training on the Sunshine Law, public records and public service ethics within one hundred twenty (120) days of taking office. These four (4) hours count towards the annual eight (8) hour training requirement.

    Elected municipal officials must certify annually that they have completed this training requirement. Copies of certification forms are available on this website.

  7. Where can elected municipal officials obtain ethics training hours?
    The Code of Ethics states that training may be obtained through regional universities, municipal or local government organization, or the state or regional Bar associations. Our law firm regularly conducts ethics training programs for our municipal clients.

  8. When are elected municipal officials required to file their annual certification of completion of the ethics training requirement?
    The Code of Ethics does not define “annual” for purposes of this filing. Our office has issued ethics advisory opinions advising our municipal clients that each elected municipal official has twelve (12) months from the date they were elected to complete this requirement. Copies of our opinions are available on this website.

  9. Do elected municipal officials need to obtain some documentation certifying each time they complete a portion of the eight (8) hour annual ethics training requirement?
    No. The Code of Ethics does not provide a specific process for tracking participation in ethics training by elected municipal officials. We have advised municipal clients that we represent to sign in, if possible, to verify attendance at ethics training programs; however, the Code only requires elected municipal officials to certify annually that they have completed the training requirement.

  10. How can I obtain an ethics advisory opinion from Goren, Cherof, Doody & Ezrol, P.A.?
    We may only issue formal ethics advisory opinions pursuant to the Code of Ethics to elected officials serving municipalities represented by our office. Please contact our office for additional information.

  11. Who enforces the Code of Ethics?
    The Code of Ethics is enforced by the Broward County Office of the Inspector General in accordance with the Broward County Charter.