Georgia’s Code of Ethics does not apply to members of local school boards, the Supreme Court of Georgia said today in a unanimous decision. The high court ruled that former Gov. Sonny Perdue had no authority in August 2010 to remove three members of the Warren County Board of Education for alleged misconduct.
Two DeKalb County housing officials face an ethics inquiry into their requests for charitable and political donations from a developer doing business with their agency. An Oct. 19 hearing is scheduled for Dorothy Williams and former state Rep. George Maddox, both members of the DeKalb County Housing Authority’s board, who asked developer Dave Dixon to give to various causes. Dixon said he or his business gave them each $2,500 for a total of $5,000.
A top DeKalb economic development official has a conflict of interest because he also heads a group that’s received $8 million in county payments, the DeKalb ethics board was told Wednesday night. McBrayer “is very clearly receiving a benefit from the PATH Foundation,” which has collected $8 million from DeKalb since 2004, said Brian Daughdrill, lawyer for a neighborhood group that lodged a complaint. But McBrayer’s lawyer, Elizabeth Branch, said those restrictions apply only to for-profit businesses, not non-profits: “Being a non-profit makes all the difference in the world.”
A combative Eugene Walker on Monday talked the DeKalb County school board into holding off on discussing a proposed ethics code for board members. State Rep. Kevin Levitas last month proposed a state law giving the DeKalb board “a clear set of principles” to follow. Walker, who resigned as chairman of the DeKalb Development Authority this year after controversy over his role there, said Levitas’ proosal “offended” him. “We oughta throw it in the trash,” he said. “I don’t want to hear anything about it.”
No vote has been taken, but MARTA appears close to signing off on state Sen. Doug Stoner‘s job with a key contractor, the engineering firm of PBS&J. Several MARTA officials say there’s no conflict, because PBS&J got the contract before it hired Stoner, who serves on the Legislature’s MARTA Oversight Committee.
DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis appointed Bobbie Kennedy Sanford and Isaac Blythers to the county’s board of ethics on Wednesday, giving the long-neglected panel enough members to actually have a quorum and do its business. Chairwoman Teri Lee Thompson had been complaining for more than a year that the board could not function unless it got some new appointees. “It’s like we exist, but not really,” she said.