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Council Resolution Seeks Stronger Ethics for Quasi-Government Agencies

Seeking increased accountability, Louisville Metro Councilman Jerry Miller, R-19, has sponsored a resolution that asks quasi-government agencies to comply with the city's ethics law.The non-binding measure says that agencies where the majority of board members are appointed by Mayor Greg Fischer and have a budget over $100,000 should be more open.It requests those entities support policies that provide financial information including expenses, salaries and contracts through an online database."What that’ll do is add a little more accountability for the citizens who today it’s really a closed shop in terms that it’s not a publicly available database that someone can investigate," says Miller.The resolution is spurred in large part by recent reports that showed non-competitive contracts were given to businesses owned by Metropolitan Sewer District board members. Three board members, including the chairman, resigned and the board adopted a new policy that bars members from doing business with MSD.Several council members, however, said the changes should go further.Besides following the city's ethics ordinance and emulating the financial tracking system, Miller's resolution also asks Fischer to only appoint people who support its mandates to agency boards.Miller says it puts pressure on organizations to be accountable and fits with the mayor's commitment to transparency.“It’s responsive to some of the concerns we’ve been reading about for the last three or four months. And it really will restore confidence that some don’t have in these quasi-government entities,” he says.The resolution has bi-partisan support and will go before the Government Accountability and Ethics committee on Wednesday.