Sec. 612, Conflict of Interests - Pittsburgh Open Government Amendment

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Sec. 612


The CAP may put a different Conflict of Interest Provision in its bylaws to replace this.

612.   Conflict of Interest Provision of the Citizen Advisory Panel


People who stand to acquire personal financial or material gain from City administrative or legislative decisions are held to have a conflict of interest.

a.       For purposes of voting and participation in the CAP, a conflict of interest shall be deemed to exist when a person receives, stands to receive, is seeking, or plans to seek monetary or material gain (other than the general services provided all residents and assistance for educational purposes or low income) from any action, operation, or program of the City, its agencies, authorities, or units of government or that is under the direction, administration, or determination thereof; when a person is an employee, officer, representative, or is otherwise answerable to an entity receiving or seeking such gain; when a person is an elected or appointed public official or employee of the City, its agents, or sub-entities or of another governmental entity which receives payment from or provides funding to or has oversight of or has legal authority over the City; when a person has influential relationships with City officials as a lobbyist or in having an elected, appointed, or employed position within a political party; when an advantage may be gained for a business or commercial interest by disadvantaging a competitor; when a person is an employee or a dependent of any of the aforesaid; or when a situation identified in CAP bylaws or rules as a conflict of interest arises.


The CAP Conflict of Interest Provision shall address in more detail how such conflicts will be handled.

b.       The CAP bylaws shall include a Conflict of Interest Provision regulating voting and participation in the CAP and the acceptance of funding or donations to the CAP.   The Conflict of Interest Provision shall address: which parties are excluded from membership; restrictions on participation and funding; the responsibility to disclose; situations where participation may be allowed without vote; the criteria and process for granting waivers; conflicts of interest in the acceptance of funding or donations; the handling of conflicts of interest which may arise with individual votes or issues for members; and such other matters and circumstances as may involve conflicts of interests..


In addition to those who make money from the City, those who already have a hand in controlling process are also considered to have a conflict of interest.  Officials and employees of political parties exert considerable influence and could easily dominate and subvert the intent of the CAP.

c.       Unless otherwise provided in a Conflict of Intrest Provision of the CAP bylaws, the following are excluded from participating as a member of the CAP:   elected officials, board or commission members, and employees of the City, its agencies, and its units of government; officers, board members and employees of nonprofit organizations in receipt or pending receipt of funding from the City in excess of $1000 per annum; consultants, contractors, suppliers, vendors, and individuals doing business with the City or seeking contracts and employment with the City; litigants with material claims against the City; individuals employed by or holding an elected or appointed office within a political party; registered lobbyists; persons or the agents of parties receiving real estate subsidies, tax abatements, tax incremental financing, forgivenesses, or other monetary or material gain from the City for their interests in real estate property, except for owner occupied residential properties; individuals having any other arrangements or associations with the City which may be deemed to constitute a significant conflict of interest; any individuals with situations which may later be identified as conflicts of interest; and the employees and immediate family members of any of the aforesaid.   Furthermore, unless otherwise provided in the bylaws, the aforesaid and their associated organizations may not provide funding or donations, either financial or in-kind, to the CAP.


Temporary conflicts of interest for seated CAP members require those members recuse themselves during for votes related to the conflict. those with conflicts of interest.

d.       Unless otherwise provided in the CAP bylaws, in instances where a conflict of interest arises for a CAP member, if the conflict will be ongoing, the member shall resign or be removed from membership, or if the conflict is temporary and limited in nature, the member shall recuse him or herself from any votes related to the conflict.   Members shall disclose potential conflicts of interest at the time of their joining the CAP, upon becoming aware of a possible conflict, or, if so allowed, each time when speaking upon a matter related to their conflict of interest.   If a conflict of interest is not self identified by a member or where a question of a conflict of interest otherwise arises, the CAP board or an appropriate committee shall make a determination.

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