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(A) The purpose of the Code of Ethics is to establish ethical standards of conduct for city officials and employees by identifying acts or actions that are incompatible with the best interests of the city. By eliminating conflicts of interest and providing a guide for conduct in city matters, the Mayor and City Council hope to promote the faith and confidence of the citizens in their government.
(B) It is essential to the proper operation of democratic government that public officials and employees be independent and impartial; that governmental decisions and policy be made through proper channels; that public office not be used for private gain; and that there be public confidence in the integrity of government. Public officials and employees must serve their government in a fiduciary capacity and must not bestow special consideration upon any person merely because of that person's relationship to an official or employee. The attainment of these ends is impaired whenever there exists conflict between the private interests of a public official or employee and his or her duties as such. The public interest therefore requires that the law protect against such conflicts of interest and establish appropriate ethical standards with respect to the conduct of elected officials and government employees in situations where conflicts exist, as well as in situations where conflicts might develop.
(C) It is also essential to the proper operation of government that those best qualified be encouraged to serve the government. Accordingly, legal safeguards against conflicts of interest must be so designed as not to unnecessarily or unreasonably impede the recruitment and retention by the government of those persons who are best qualified to serve it. The right of each official and employee to privacy in his or her financial affairs must not, therefore, be limited beyond that disclosure necessary to ensure the integrity of government. Moreover, because an essential principle underlying the staffing of our government is that its officials and employees should not be denied the opportunity, available to all other citizens, to acquire and retain private economic and other interests, such opportunity should not be limited unless conflicts with the responsibility of such officials and employees to the public cannot be avoided.
(Ord. 16-033, passed 5-18-17)