2-156-380  Powers and duties.
   In addition to other powers and duties specifically mentioned in this chapter, the board of ethics shall have the following powers and duties:
   (a)   to receive and refer complaints of violations of any of the provisions of this chapter to the inspector general and to refer complaints of violations of the governmental ethics ordinance of a sister agency to the sister agency;
   (a-1)   pursuant to Section 2-156-385, to issue a finding as to whether evidence shows that there is probable cause to believe that there has been a violation of this chapter;
   (b)   pursuant to Section 2-156-392, to issue a written opinion as to whether there has been a violation of this chapter and to impose a fine for such violation;
   (c)   to issue subpoenas upon a showing of good cause, at the request of the subject of an investigation or hearing, or on its own motion, when conducting a probable cause finding or hearing on the merits authorized in accordance with this chapter, if (i) the board has a reasonable belief that a violation of this chapter has occurred and the party to whom the subpoena is to be issued has previously failed to respond to a written request for the production of documents and/or testimony within seven days of the receipt of said written request; and (ii) the testimony of the witness or the documents or items sought by the subpoena are relevant to the probable cause finding or hearing on the merits.
   (1)   A subpoena shall be served in the same manner as subpoenas issued under the Rules of the Illinois Supreme Court to compel appearance of a deponent, and subject to the same witness and mileage fees fixed by law for such subpoenas.
   (2)   A subpoena issued under this section shall identify the person to whom it is directed and the documents or other items sought thereby, if any, and the date, time and place for the appearance of the witness and production of the documents or other items described in the subpoena. In no event shall the date for examination or production be less than seven days after service of the subpoena.
   (3)   No later than the time for appearance or production required by the subpoena, the person to whom the subpoena is directed may object to the subpoena, in whole or in part. The objection shall be in writing, delivered to the board of ethics, and shall specify the grounds for the objection. For seven days after receipt of a timely objection to a subpoena, the board of ethics shall take no action to enforce the subpoena or to initiate prosecution of the person to whom the subpoena is directed. During this seven day period, the board of ethics shall consider the grounds for the objection and may attempt to resolve the objection through negotiation with the person to whom the subpoena is directed. The seven day period may be extended by the board of ethics in order to allow completion of any negotiations. The extension shall be in writing addressed to the person to whom the subpoena is directed, and shall specify the date on which the negotiation period will end. Negotiations may include such matters as the scope of the subpoena and the time, place and manner of response thereto. The filing of an objection to a subpoena, and negotiations pursuant to an objection, shall not constitute refusal to comply with the subpoena, or interference with or obstruction of an investigation;
   (d)   to require the cooperation of city agencies, officials, employees and other persons whose conduct is regulated by this chapter, in implementing its duties pursuant to this chapter;
   (d-1)   to adopt, in consultation with the inspector general, and disseminate a summary of all rules and laws setting forth the rights of officials and employees as provided in Chapters 2-56 and 2-156;
   (e)   to consult with city agencies, officials and employees on matters involving ethical conduct;
   (f)   to recommend such legislative action as it may deem appropriate to effect the policy of this chapter;
   (g)   to conduct research in the field of governmental ethics and to carry out such educational programs as it deems necessary to effect the policy and purpose of this chapter;
   (h)   to promulgate rules for the conduct of board activities and hearings conducted pursuant to Section 2-156-392, including procedural rules consistent with the requirements of due process of law; rules related to: (i) administering waivers; (ii) contesting fines imposed for training and filing violations; (iii) the manner of making settlements, or the board's opinions, determinations and findings, available to the public; and (v) in consultation with the inspector general, the criteria to determine whether a potential violation of this chapter is minor. Provided, however, no such rules and regulations shall become effective until 45 days after their submission to the city council. And, provided further, no such rules and regulations shall become effective if, during said 45-day period, the city council, by majority vote of aldermen entitled to be elected, acts to disapprove said rules and regulations. The applicable administrative hearings procedures set forth in Chapter 2-14 and the applicable rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto shall apply to the procedural aspects of matters handled by hearing officers or presented to the board to the extent such procedural aspects are not covered by this chapter or the rules and regulations promulgated by the board;
   (h-1)   To return to the inspector general investigative reports submitted to it for a finding of probable cause pursuant to Section 2-156-385 for additional investigation or clarification;
   (i)   to prescribe forms for the disclosure and registration of information as provided in this chapter;
   (j)   to hire such staff as the city council shall provide in the annual appropriation ordinance;
   (k)   to prepare and publish, from time to time but at least semi-annually, reports summarizing the board's activities and to present such reports to the mayor and the city council. Each such report shall include, for the reporting period, the compliance of employees, lobbyists, and officials with the training, disclosure and registration requirements of this chapter, the number, substance and precedential value of the formal and informal advisory opinions that the board has issued, as well as the number, type and resolution of ethics complaints brought to the board, and the trends and emerging issues the board has assessed based on advisory requests and the role ethics training may play in addressing such developing ethics issues. The board shall also prepare and publish periodic electronic newsletters as frequently as the board may deem appropriate to inform employees, officials, the public and the media of the advisory opinions it has issued and current ethical problems in the workplace;
   (l)   to render advisory opinions with respect to the provisions of this chapter based upon a real or hypothetical set of circumstances, when requested by an official or employee, or by a person who is personally and directly involved. Advisory opinions shall be made available to the public, but the identity of the person requesting the opinion and of any person whose conduct is involved in the set of circumstances described in the request for the opinion shall be confidential. The board shall indicate, in writing, those advisory opinions that have precedential value, and organize such opinions in a searchable database that is accessible from the board's website. This subsection shall not be construed to prohibit the executive director from issuing informal advisory opinions in accordance with rules promulgated by the board;
   (m)   to create, operate and maintain an on-line system that allows lobbyists to register on-line and the public to view and search on-line any report of lobbying activities submitted under Section 2-156-250;
   (n)   to receive conflict of interest disclosures from any city employee or official, including aldermen;
   (n-1)   to review campaign finance or lobbyist filings for compliance with Article VI of this Chapter, and to refer potential violations discovered by such review to the inspector general as a complaint;
   (o)   to recommend policies, procedures and practices designed to ensure compliance with any federal, state or local law or regulation or any of the city's compliance-related polices and internal controls.
(Prior code § 26.2-37; Added Coun. J. 5-16-90, p. 16204; Amend Coun. J. 7-30-97, p. 50892; Amend Coun. J. 7-28-11, p. 4941, § 9; Amend Coun. J. 11-16-11, p. 13798, Art. IV, § 2; Amend Coun. J. 7-25-12, p. 31123, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 11-8-12, p. 38872, § 22; Amend Coun. J. 2-13-13, p. 46730, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 7-30-14, p. 85537, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 7-29-15, p. 3567, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 2-10-16, p. 19348, §§ 3, 5)