Amid the calls for ethics reform and limiting gifts to elected officials one freshman state representative wants to make sure those in city governments aren’t overlooked.
Representative Shamed Dogan (R-Ballwin) told Missourinet he learned about the type of situation he wants to stem when he was a Ballwin City Alderman. He is proposing lowering the limit on gifts city officials can take from entities who have business pending with their cities.
“The reason that I found out about this issue was that we had a controversy in Ballwin where our city administrator took World Series tickets from at trash contractor just months before they were offering up a no-bid deal to extend their contract with the city,” said Dogan.
“The people who do business with cities are not lobbyists so they don’t have to report it to the state, so they only way we every will know about what municipal elected officials or appointed officials are doing is if they self-report it,” said Dogan. “I think just think that’s a system that needs to be improved.”
Dogan proposes lowering to $250 the limit for the value of any gift to a city official with an annual limit of $2,500. Current law allows up to $500 per gift or up to $5000 annually in gifts to go unreported.
“Thankfully cities are allowed to reduce or even eliminate gifts right now but they’re not required to do so,” said Dogan, “so what my bill would do is require them to reduce that amount to $250.”
Dogan says he also supports the ethics reform for state elected officials.
Attempts to reach the City of Ballwin or the Missouri Municipal League for comment were unsuccessful as of the time this article was posted.
Dogan’s bill is HB 789.