Friday, January 07, 2011

Bill Would Bar Local Government Employees From Serving On Councils

Rep. Tom Saunders (R) has introduced HB 1022, which would bar employees of counties, cities and towns from being a candidate for or serving on the legislative or fiscal body of the county, city, or town that employs the employee. The employee would be required to resign his position in order to become a candidate or serve on a legislative or fiscal body unless the person is an employee on July 1, 2011, in which case the person would be able to continue to serve the remainder of his or her term.

This legislation is very much needed. I've always taken the position that the Indiana Constitution's separation of powers clause prevents persons from simultaneously holding executive and legislative positions within the government; however, the legislature in its infinite wisdom enacted a state law many years ago that permitted local government employees to serve on councils. Increasingly, our councils have become populated with government employees who are able to vote on the budget and other important matters affecting their employment. This has been a recurring problem on Indianapolis' city-county council.

9 comments:

Diana Vice said...

It would be interesting to follow the lobbyists around at the statehouse as they frantically work to defeat this piece of legislation. I hope THE PEOPLE get behind this, and I really hope there are enough statesmen in the legislature who will tell the lobbyists to take a hike.

Tandem said...

So the fact that the CC president is a lawyer working for one of most politically connected law firms in the city is OK. I pay my taxes, I actually live in the district I'd wish to represent,I have no criminal record and yet I'm not allowed to participate in the political process. How is that constitutional? Wouldn't "taxation without representation" allow me serve as I please? If the purpose of the bill is to remove the crookedness out of councils good luck. How many people would bill exclude from the peoples process. This bill is why I hate being a republican comitteeman! I guess I'll quit the republican gig and start paying into my unions P.A.C.

Had Enough Indy? said...

Banning lobbyists, too, would not be a bad move.

Concerned Taxpayer said...

Tandem is 100% correct.
Which is worse, a police officer or firefighter, who once a year has the opportunity to vote on a budget prepared by someone else,
or,
a BOTTOM-FEEDING attorney, whose firm has the mayor in their pocket, and has the power to change almost anything?
My apologies to the good attorneys and carp.

Advance Indiana said...

That attorney would be hauled before a grand jury and probed about certain matters he has handled to enrich his law firm's clients if we had a real prosecutor in this town. People from outside Indianapolis cannot believe what these guys get by with here. This sort of thing goes on in Chicago all the time but there is a revolving door of these self-serving politicians heading to federal prison for their public crimes. If you can steal a public utility and the U.S. Attorney's Office will simply dump the investigative report in the trash, there's no limit to what a corrupt pol can do in this town.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Gary, of course your refernce is to the Lawrence city water utility and Tom Schneider and his minions who made millions off indivdual $1000 investments while leave Lawrence residents with huge water bills. Yes, it's remarkable that people did not go to jail over that.

TwoDomeTown said...

Tandem and Concerned Taxpayer try the feint... quick, look over there, what they are doing is way worse than what is happening over here. Which would you rather have?

Truth is we want it all cleaned up.

dcrutch said...

Amen. We want it ALL cleaned up. To my state officials, Representative DeLaney and Senator Schneider: A statesman-like opportunity is upon you.

Bill said...

How about if you make money from your position onthe CCC like Lutz,Ryan,etc.