Council members multiple streams of income…..

Bill 19-482 is currently under consideration that would amend the DC Home Rule Act to establish full time employment for the members of the DC Council. Council member Vincent Orange’s says outside employment causes “conflicts of interest, unethical behavior, corruption and divided loyalties.”  (DCist October 1, 2011)

Several articles have been written on the subject, some of which are highlighted here. I’m interested in your thoughts. Does DC need a full time council? Why or why not? Here are a few recent posts on the subject to get the juices flowing (click the title to see the full story):

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2 responses to “Council members multiple streams of income…..”

  1. Nicole Martin says :

    I tend to agree. Over the years council members have had to recuse themselves from votes on one topic or another because of their outside employment. Is that really doing their constituents justice when their representative is encumbered and can not exercise their voice on issues impacting their community? We elect our council people to represent us, they are not in the seat to represent themselves and I believe outside employment can get in the way of true public service. The example that comes to mind is from this weeks City Paper article on Jack Evans. He had to recuse himself from a vote on a $272M city financing package for a hotel in 2009 due to outside interests. I’m sure his constituents would have appreciated a vote on something with such a large impact to the city.
    Link to City Paper ad:http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/articles/41762/is-jack-evans-actually-making-the-dc-council-better/full/

  2. JBudd says :

    Although I would rarely ever agree with anything that Councilman Orange may say regarding his colleagues, I must say that DC Council members should be required to make their office positions full-time. Their salaries should be sufficient enough at the current six figures to be able to require their full time attention to public service. This would not prevent them from having outside investments…as so long as any investment income (as a sole proprietor or member of a llc/corporation) is reported biannually to the newly appointed ethical panel, and to the general public.

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