On this week’s “Florida NewsMakers” program, Florida Commission on Ethics Executive Director Virlindia Doss sits down with Sachs Media Group’s Trimmel Gomes. Their discussion examines newly increased penalties for public officials who fail to properly disclose their finances and Florida’s new ethics reform law.
The state’s elected officials are now racing to meet a July 1 deadline to file their financial disclosure forms, facing possible new penalties if they fail to comply with changes enacted by the Legislature earlier this year. “The Legislature demonstrated a high degree of commitment to and interest in ethics issues, and our Ethics Commission has been extremely gratified by that attention,” Doss tells Gomes. Doss rejects criticism that the Ethics Commission lacks meaningful enforcement power, and says the new legislation proves the point.
“I don’t think we’re a toothless tiger at all. I know most public officials are very concerned, they are very interested in doing the right thing,” she says. “We hear from dozens of public officials and employees every week that call us and ask for advice.” Doss addresses those issues and more on “Florida NewsMakers.”