CEO 84-66 -- June 27, 1984
APPLICABILITY OF FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE LAW TO DIRECTOR OF STAFF SERVICES FOR CITY COUNCIL
To: Henry S. Stout, Director of Staff Services, Office of City Council, City of Jacksonville
The Director of Staff Services for the Office of the City Council of Jacksonville is not a "local officer" subject to the requirement of filing a statement of financial interests annually under Section 112.3145, Florida Statutes. The Council Secretary rather than the Director of Staff Services functions as municipal clerk under the City Code.
Are you, the Director of Staff Services for the Office of the City Council of Jacksonville, a "local officer" subject to the requirement of filing a statement of financial interests annually?
Your question is answered in the negative.
The Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees provides that each "local officer" shall file a statement of financial interests annually. Section 112.3145(2)(b), Florida Statutes (1983). The term "local officer" is defined in part as follows:
Any person holding one or more of the following positions: . . . municipal clerk; . . . purchasing agent having the authority to make any purchase exceeding $1,000 for any political subdivision of the state or any entity thereof. [Section 112.3145(1)(a)3, Florida Statutes (1983).]
Section 13.108 of the Jacksonville City Charter provides for the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court as an elected position which does not act as Clerk of the Board of County Commissioners or as the ex officio auditor of the County. In your letter of inquiry you advise that you serve as the Director of Staff Services for the Office of the City Council. In that capacity, under Chapter 11 of the City Code you head the Office of Staff Services, which provides the necessary secretarial and clerical help for members of the City Council, prepares legislative summaries of bills, and maintains a research and reference library for the Council and its Committees. In addition, the Council Administration Division of the Office of Staff Services is responsible for correspondence, filing, records, payrolls, and other administrative matters for the legislative branch of the City.
In contrast, the Council Secretary heads the Office of Council Secretary, the duties of which are provided in Chapter 12 of the City Code. Those responsibilities include acting as Secretary of the Council, maintaining the legislative files and records of the Council as the official records of the City, supervising the preparation of minutes of Council meetings, maintaining and indexing records of ordinances and resolutions, preparing agendas for Council meetings, and publishing notices required by law for the Council.
In our view, your position as Director of Staff Services does not have the responsibilities which we consider the most characteristic of municipal clerks, such as keeping official records, preparing minutes, and maintaining records of ordinances and resolutions. These functions are performed under the direction of the Council Secretary.
You have advised our staff in a telephone conversation that you do not have any purchasing authority in behalf of the City. Accordingly, we find that as Director of Staff Services for the Office of City Council, you are not a "local officer" subject to the requirement of filing a statement of financial interests annually.