2425 Bristol Court SW – 1st Floor Conference Room 148 – Olympia, WA



March 9, 2007

Regular Meeting Minutes



A.     Preliminary Business

1.      Roll Call

The regular meeting of the Washington State Executive Ethics Board (EEB) was called to order by Chair Evelyn Yenson at 9:05 a.m. In attendance were Vice Chair Judy Golberg and Members Trish Akana, Neil Gorrell and Kyle Usrey. Board staff in attendance included:  Executive Director Susan Harris, Senior Assistant Attorney General Linda Moran, Assistant Attorney General Michael Tribble, Administrative Officer Ruthann Bryant and Investigators Sue Jones and Nancy Lewin.


2.      Approval of Agenda

Susan Harris requested an amendment to Item B. Executive Session adding discussion of pending litigation with legal counsel.


Motion 07-037 Moved by Member Gorrell, seconded by Member Akana:


The Board approves the March 9, 2007 agenda as amended.


The motion passed unanimously.


3.      Approval of February 9, 2007 Meeting Minutes

Michael Tribble noted that Mr. Leichner’s name was misspelled on page 3 under Miscellaneous Matters.


Motion 07-038 Moved by Vice Chair Golberg, seconded by Member Gorrell:


The Board approves the February 9, 2007 minutes as amended.


The motion passed unanimously.


B. Executive Session

The Board went into Executive Session at 9:07 a.m. to review the performance of a public employee and to discuss pending litigation with legal counsel.  The Board returned to open session at 9:55 a.m.


C. Advisory Opinion Request

1.  Review and possible approval of amended Advisory Opinion 02-02 A

Susan Harris reported on amendments to Advisory Opinion 02-02 A -- Use of State Resources Frequently Asked Questions and Examples.  She noted that the amendments included four recent questions and answers brought before the Board over the past year and changed the title to “Other Board Advice.”


Member Akana noted that she would prefer the title be “Use of State Resources Questions and Answers” and Vice Chair Golberg suggested adding a numbering system.


The Board requested that staff make the changes and bring them back to the April meeting for review.


2.  Withdrawal of request by Washington State Parks regarding solicitation of donations

Susan Harris presented a letter from Judy Johnson, Deputy Director of Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, withdrawing their request for an advisory opinion regarding solicitation by Parks employees.


Motion 07-039 Moved by Vice Chair Golberg, seconded by Member Akana:


The Board accepts the withdrawal as requested with no further action.


The motion passed unanimously.


D.  Policy Approval

Susan Harris introduced John LaRocque and provided a draft policy submitted by the Higher Education Coordinating Board regarding Ethics in the Work Place.


Motion 07-040 Moved by Vice Chair Golberg, seconded by Member Usrey:


The Board approves Higher Education Coordinating Board policy on Ethics in the Work Place as presented.


The motion passed unanimously.


E.  Legislation

Susan Harris summarized legislation that may have an impact on RCW 42.52.


F.  Staff Reports

1.  Executive Director’s Report

Susan Harris reported on the trend analysis for complaints during calendar year 2006. She provided charts displaying dismissals, action taken by the Board and by section of law.


Vice Chair Golberg requested a breakdown of RCW 42.52.160 cases by specific use (i.e. email, Internet, etc.) Member Akana noted that the use of resources is a good topic for the quarterly newsletter that is sent out to state employees.


Ms. Harris also discussed a plan to implement an Outreach Program and presented a sample poster with tear off cards providing Ethics Board contact information.


Susan Harris also commented that the Massachusetts Ethics Board produced a “Top 10 Rules” and suggested developing a similar top ten. Chair Yenson noted that the top ten could be added to the back of business cards.


Ms. Harris also noted that the 2007 COGEL Conference will be held in Victoria, British Columbia in September.


2.  AAG Report

Senior Assistant Attorney General Linda Moran noted that the Governor’s Boards and Commissioners Executive Conference was held on March 5th. She added that Member Usrey was in attendance and Senior Counsel Nancy Krier was invited to speak.


3.  Other Staff Reports

No other staff reports were given.


G.  Public Comment/Board Member Comments

Cheryl Hintz Middleton of ProAct Law Group, PLLC, introduced herself and noted that she contracts with the Department of Personnel to conduct Ethics training to state employees. Ms. Middleton thanked the Board for the opportunity to instruct the classes and noted that conversations regarding Ethics are beginning within agencies.


H.   Executive or Closed Session

At 11:04 a.m. the Board moved into Closed Session to discuss potential litigation, deliberate and to receive and evaluate complaints against state employees and officers. The Board returned to open session at 11:49 a.m.


I.  Miscellaneous Matters/Adjournment

There being no miscellaneous matters, the meeting was adjourned at 11:50 a.m.


Approved by the Board 4/13/07