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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2013 - 2014 Regular Session


Posted: May 12, 2014 03:17 PM
From: Senator John T. Yudichak and Sen. Edwin B. Erickson
To: All Senate members
Subject: Legislation Creating Public Integrity Commission
We intend to re-introduce legislation (SB 625 of the 2011-2012 session) creating the Pennsylvania Public Integrity Commission.

The mission of the commission would be to:

- uncover and investigate public corruption at all levels and in all branches of government within the Commonwealth;
- refer investigations to appropriate law enforcement officials for prosecution;
- provide a law enforcement and educational role with respect to corruption in Pennsylvania; - work cooperatively with the Attorney General and other law enforcement entities; and
- issue reports on its work, the status of corruption investigations and recommendations for reform.

The Public Integrity Commission would also have subpoena power and the authority to seek immunity orders to obtain testimony necessary in public corruption investigations.

This will help ensure that the commission has maximum ability to carry out investigations. In addition to the expanded authority and law enforcement status, the Public Integrity Commission would absorb the existing functions and duties of the Pennsylvania State Ethics Commission relating to statements of financial interest and conflicts of interest.

It is the hope that this new, empowered agency would take Pennsylvania out from under the dark cloud of suspicion hovering over many of our governmental institutions and into the light of good, ethical government practices. Self-policing has not worked. It is time to form an independent state agency to root out and prevent public corruption.

Introduced as SB1398