CEO 85-79 -- October 24, 1985
CONFLICT OF INTEREST
D.H.R.S. EMPLOYEE WORKING FOR BUSINESS WHICH CONTRACTED WITH DEPARTMENT IN THE PAST
To: (Name withheld at the person's request.)
No prohibited conflict of interest would be created were a program manager with a District of the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services to be employed part- time with a business which has contracted with the Department in the past but which currently has no contract with the Department. As the program manager's work will involve monitoring nursing homes located outside of this State and as her proposed employer currently is not doing business with the Department, neither Section 112.313(7) nor Section 112.3185(2), Florida Statutes, is applicable.
Would a prohibited conflict of interest be created were you, a Program Manager with a District of the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services, to be employed part-time with a business which has contracted with the Department in the past but which currently has no contract with the Department?
Your question is answered in the negative.
In your letter of inquiry you advise that currently you are employed as a program manager in the District V Alcohol, Drug Abuse and Mental Health Program of the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services. You also advise that you have been offered part-time employment with a limited partnership as a nursing consultant on a team to provide quality assurance monitoring of several nursing homes located in Ohio, Missouri, Kentucky, and West Virginia. All of your work will be done while on approved leave from the Department. The limited partnership has entered into several contracts in the past with the District's and the State's Offices of Developmental Services. However, at this time there are no existing contracts between the Department and the limited partnership.
The Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees provides in relevant part:
CONFLICTING EMPLOYMENT OR CONTRACTUAL RELATIONSHIP. -- No public officer or employee of an agency shall have or hold any employment or contractual relationship with any business entity or any agency which is subject to the regulation of, or is doing business with, an agency of which he is an officer or employee . . . ; nor shall an officer or employee of an agency have or hold any employment or contractual relationship that will create a continuing or frequently recurring conflict between his private interests and the performance of his public duties or that would impede the full and faithful discharge of his public duties. [Section 112.313(7)(a), Florida Statutes (1983).]
No agency employee who participates through decision, approval, disapproval, recommendation, preparation of any part of a purchase request, influencing the content of any specification or procurement standard, rendering of advice, investigation, or auditing or in any other advisory capacity in the procurement of contractual services shall become or be, while an agency employee, the employee of a person contracting with the agency by whom the employee is employed. [Section 112.3185(2), Florida Statutes (1983).]
As your work will involve monitoring nursing homes located outside of this State and as the limited partnership currently is not doing business with the Department, we find that neither of these provisions is applicable.
Accordingly, we find that no prohibited conflict of interest would be created were you to accept the part-time employment which has been offered to you. Should you maintain this outside employment and the limited partnership seek another contract with the Department, we suggest that you request another opinion at that time.