Print Friendly SENATE BILL NO. 1375 – Legislators/public servants, gifts
SENATE BILL NO. 1375
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S1375......................................................by STATE AFFAIRS
LEGISLATORS - PUBLIC SERVANTS - GIFTS - Amends existing law to prohibit
public servants from soliciting, accepting or agreeing to accept any
pecuniary benefit from certain persons; and to prohibit legislators or
public servants employed by the Legislature from soliciting, accepting or
agreeing to accept any pecuniary benefit from certain persons.
02/17 Senate intro - 1st rdg - to printing
02/18 Rpt prt - to St Aff
03/02 Rpt out - to 14th Ord
]]]] LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF IDAHO ]]]]
Fifty-seventh Legislature Second Regular Session - 2004
IN THE SENATE
SENATE BILL NO. 1375
BY STATE AFFAIRS COMMITTEE
1 AN ACT
2 RELATING TO BRIBERY AND CORRUPTION; AMENDING SECTION 18-1356, IDAHO CODE, TO
3 PROHIBIT PUBLIC SERVANTS FROM SOLICITING, ACCEPTING OR AGREEING TO ACCEPT
4 ANY PECUNIARY BENEFIT FROM CERTAIN PERSONS, AND TO PROHIBIT LEGISLATORS OR
5 PUBLIC SERVANTS EMPLOYED BY THE LEGISLATURE FROM SOLICITING, ACCEPTING OR
6 AGREEING TO ACCEPT ANY PECUNIARY BENEFIT FROM CERTAIN PERSONS.
7 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Idaho:
8 SECTION 1. That Section 18-1356, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby
9 amended to read as follows:
10 18-1356. GIFTS TO PUBLIC SERVANTS BY PERSONS SUBJECT TO THEIR JURISDIC-
11 TION. (1) Regulatory and law enforcement officials. No public servant in any
12 department or agency exercising regulatory functions, or conducting inspec-
13 tions or investigations, or carrying on civil or criminal litigation on behalf
14 of the government, or having custody of prisoners, shall solicit, accept or
15 agree to accept any pecuniary benefit from a person known to be subject to
16 such regulation, inspection, investigation or custody, or against whom such
17 litigation is known to be pending or contemplated.
18 (2) Officials concerned with government contracts and pecuniary transac-
19 tions Government officials and public servants. No public servant, having any
20 discretionary function to perform in connection with contracts, purchases,
21 payments, claims or other pecuniary transactions of the government including
22 government officials, shall solicit, accept or agree to accept any pecuniary
23 benefit from any person known to be interested in or likely to become inter-
24 ested in any such government contract, purchase, payment, claim or transac-
26 (3) Judicial and administrative officials. No public servant having judi-
27 cial or administrative authority and no public servant employed by or in a
28 court or other tribunal having such authority, or participating in the
29 enforcement of its decisions, shall solicit, accept or agree to accept any
30 pecuniary benefit from a person known to be interested in or likely to become
31 interested in any matter before such public servant or a tribunal with which
32 he is associated.
33 (4) Legislative officials. No legislator or public servant employed by
34 the legislature or by any committee or agency thereof shall solicit, accept or
35 agree to accept any pecuniary benefit in return for action on a bill, legisla-
36 tion, proceeding or official transaction from any person known to be inter-
37 ested in a bill, legislation, official transaction or proceeding, pending or
38 contemplated before the legislature or any committee or agency thereof.
39 (5) Exceptions. This section shall not apply to:
40 (a) fees prescribed by law to be received by a public servant, or any
41 other benefit for which the recipient gives legitimate consideration or to
42 which he is otherwise legally entitled; or
43 (b) gifts or other benefits conferred on account of kinship or other per-
1 sonal, professional or business relationship independent of the official
2 status of the receiver; or
3 (c) trivial benefits not to exceed a value of fifty dollars ($50.00)
4 incidental to personal, professional or business contacts and involving no
5 substantial risk of undermining official impartiality.
6 (6) Offering benefits prohibited. No person shall knowingly confer, or
7 offer or agree to confer, any benefit prohibited by the foregoing subsections.
8 (7) Grade of offense. An offense under this section is a misdemeanor and
9 shall be punished as provided in this chapter.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
The purpose of this legislation is to clarify the
prohibition on giving and accepting gifts to/by government
officials, including state legislators.
Under current law, a public servant must have a
discretionary function to perform in connection with contracts,
purchases, payments, claims or other pecuniary transactions of
the government in order to convict for accepting gifts. For
example, a mayor may accept a large gift from a company
attempting to secure a contract with the city and will not be
convicted of accepting a gift because it is the city council that
performs the ultimate discretionary function. This legislation
clarifies the language and provides that it is wrong for any
government official or public servant to accept gifts from
someone wanting to do business with the government entity.
Currently, state legislators are prohibited from accepting
gifts, in return for action on a bill, legislation, proceeding or
official transaction. This is an impossible standard to prove.
State legislators should set an example and be beyond reproach
and not present the appearance of a conflict. This legislation
would simply prohibit a state legislator from accepting a gift
from someone known to have an interest in legislation proceeding
or other official transaction.
No fiscal impact.
Name: Senator Cecil Ingram
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE/FISCAL NOTE S 1375