|Posted:||March 23, 2021 04:27 PM|
|From:||Representative Joe Webster|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Ethics Reform Package|
In 2015, the Center for Public Integrity gave Pennsylvania an “F” grade and ranked the Commonwealth 45th among all states for public integrity (specifically referring to gifts and campaign contribution levels). This placed Pennsylvania as one of only 11 states to receive a failing grade throughout the entire country. As our state’s elected officials, it is time we show the people of Pennsylvania that we work for everybody and not only special interest groups.
The current laws in Pennsylvania allow for unlimited donations for local and state candidates, allow for members of the General Assembly to accept gifts, and prohibit legislators from becoming lobbyists for only one year after they leave office. This is unacceptable. For this reason, I plan on introducing a bill package to focus on the necessary, and long overdue ethics reforms for Pennsylvania.
Current ethics laws are riddled with loopholes, which leads to corruptive influences controlling our state government. Please join me in showing Pennsylvanians that now is the time to put the people back in charge of our state government.
Introduced as HB1272
The first piece of legislation will limit campaign donations for all candidates running for office in Pennsylvania. The legislation will align Pennsylvania donation limits to the Federal Election Commission limits for federal candidates.
Introduced as HB1273
The second piece of legislation will prohibit public officials and public employees from accepting or soliciting transportation, lodging, hospitality, cash, gift, or anything of economic value from a person who is seeking a contractual, business, or financial relationship. The bill will also update an individual’s statement of financial interest to increase transparency.
Introduced as HB1274
The third and final piece of legislation will prohibit public officials and public employees from becoming a compensated lobbyist for a period of five years after leaving their job. The current one-year regulation is an insufficient deterrent that allows for a revolving door on our politics.