Ten SIM committee members sign alternative stronger ethics policy

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Ten brave SIM committee members signed a stronger ethics policy in place of SIM’s weaker policy. Advocates were given until this Wednesday to sign SIM’s policy or they would “not be able to participate as members in future meetings of the advisory groups.” The alternative policy agrees to also abide by the State Code of Ethics for Public Officials and notes that we signed in order to continue to serve on the committees. Because of a loophole in the law, our state Code of Ethics only applies to appointees of the Governor and General Assembly. SIM committee members are all appointed by the Lieutenant Governor or her appointees. Nine SIM committee members sent a letter earlier this month, rejecting SIM’s weak ethics policy that does little to limit conflicts of interest, such as those that tainted the awards of SIM’s first grants. At yesterday’s SIM Steering Committee meeting, it was announced that SIM will accept the stronger, alternative policy and allow us to continue to serve on SIM committees.