DALLAS (WBAP/KLIF) – Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson on Monday unveiled an ethics reform proposal produced by his task force on ethics.
According to the Mayor, the task force’s recommendations would both simplify and strengthen the city’s ethics code while also placing an emphasis on improved training for city officials. The report can be read here.
The reform proposal follows a series of corruption cases that involved Dallas city officials.
“I am grateful to the task force for its thorough, thoughtful, and substantive work on this proposal to restore trust in our government. Their recommendations are simultaneously bold and realistic,” said Mayor Johnson. “This reform effort is of the utmost importance, and it must be a top priority of this city council. Ethical behavior is the foundation of everything we do here at City Hall.”
The centerpiece of the proposal is the creation of the Office of Inspector General to investigate potential ethics violations, proactively monitor compliance, and serve as a resource for city employees and city officials.
“The Task Force strongly believes that the long-term benefits of these recommended reforms will be well worth the effort and expense and will enhance the ethical standards of our City officials and employees,” said Tim Powers, who chaired the task force. “With this reform effort, Dallas can become the gold standard of an ethical culture to which other cities aspire and a system in which the people of our city can have great confidence.”
Mayor Johnson appointed Powers as the Ethics Reform Czar in late 2019.
The task force produced an 18-page report for the mayor and will work with the City Attorney’s Office on an ordinance to codify the changes.
Mayor Johnson is referring the report to the Ad Hoc Committee on General Investigating and Ethics, chaired by City Councilmember Cara Mendelsohn.
The mayor said he looks forward to working with the city council on the proposal.
“Now is the time to act,” Mayor Johnson said. “Now is the time for us to lead on ethics reform. Now is the time to show the people of our city that their best interests are our only interest.”
The recommendations aim to establish a culture of ethical excellence, simplify and clarify code of ethics, and the creation of transparent online database.
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