[r31] Rep. Mahan's state nepotism legislation passes Senate (2/22/2012)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012 7:00 pm

Start Date:  2/22/2012    
End Date:  2/22/2012    

STATEHOUSE –State Rep. Kevin Mahan’s (R-Hartford City) legislation enforcing stricter nepotism laws in state government passed the Senate with a 43-7 vote late Tuesday afternoon.

House Bill (HB) 1250 – clarifying the state’s current nepotism statute – would prohibit a state employee from directly hiring or supervising a relative. Additionally, it includes stipulations limiting business interactions between state employees and outside entities of which a relative is a partner, executive or sole proprietor.

“I am very pleased to see this legislation advancing through both houses because – although state statute exists – it needs clarity and consistency to better enforce it,” said Rep. Mahan. “I think this bill will help make our state government more transparent and ethical in our hiring practices.”

A state employee found in violation of this legislation would be subject to penalties enforced by the State Ethics Commission. However, HB 1250 would allow exceptions for existing state employees currently employed in the same agency or under the supervision of a relative.

Rep. Mahan also has similar legislation addressing nepotism at the local government level currently in Senate discussions.

“We are hearing about the problem of nepotism in government throughout the state, so it makes the most sense to get our practices in order at the state level as we begin new enforcement for local government.”

HB 1250 was amended during Senate discussions, so the bill will return to the original house for approval. If approved, it will be sent to the governor’s office for his signature to be signed into law. If the changes are not accepted, it will be discussed in conference committees consisting of representatives from both caucuses from each chamber.