CEO 84-78 -- August 9, 1984
APPLICABILITY OF DISCLOSURE LAW TO MEMBERS OF COUNTY HISTORICAL COMMISSION
To: Ms. Ann Polk, Chairman, Volusia County Historical Commission
The members of the Volusia County Historical Commission are "local officers" subject to the requirement of filing statements of financial interests annually, as the Commission is not solely advisory. CEO 75-192 and CEO 75-193 are referenced.
Are the members of the Volusia County Historical Commission "local officers" subject to the requirement of filing statements of financial interests annually?
Your question is answered in the affirmative.
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 to mean:
Any appointed member of a board, commission, authority, community college district board of trustees, or council of any political subdivision of the state, excluding any member of an advisory body. A governmental body with land-planning, zoning, or natural resources responsibilities shall not be considered an advisory body. [Section 112.3145(1)(a)2, Florida Statutes (1983).]
In turn, "advisory body" is defined to mean
any board, commission, committee, council, or authority, however selected, whose total budget, appropriations, or authorized expenditures constitute less than 1 percent of the budget of each agency it serves or $100,000, whichever is less, and whose powers, jurisdiction, and authority are solely advisory and do not include the final determination or adjudication of any personal or property rights, duties, or obligations, other than those relating to its internal operations. [Section 112.312(1), Florida Statutes (1983).]
By Ordinance No. 74-28, the Volusia County Council created the Volusia County Historical Commission, composed of twelve members appointed for three-year terms. As you have advised, the Ordinance provides that the duties of the Commission are (1) to collect, arrange, record, and preserve historical material, data, and other objects and materials illustrative of and relating to the history of the County, and (2) to mark the location of various landmarks in the County where historical events have occurred.
In CEO 75-193 we advised that the members of the Sarasota County Historical Commission were subject to the financial disclosure law as that Commission did not serve a solely advisory function. The Sarasota County Historical Commission also had the duty to collect, arrange, record, and preserve historical material and data, and to mark historical locations. Similarly, in CEO 75-192 we found that the Brevard County Historical Commission, which was established to collect, arrange, record and preserve historical material and data, also did not serve a solely advisory function.
In accordance with these previous opinions, we find that the powers and authorities of the Volusia County Historical Commission are not solely advisory and therefore that the members of the Commission are "local officers" subject to the requirement of filing statements of financial interests annually under Section 112.3145, Florida Statutes.