Study: NJ needs better ethics standards

    The research comes a week after a political corruption and money laundering probe in New Jersey led to the arrest of 44 people including three mayors, and two state lawmakers.

    A new study raises questions about the ethics standards local New Jersey officials abide by. The research comes a week after a political corruption and money laundering probe in New Jersey led to the arrest of 44 people including three mayors, and two state lawmakers.

    Listen:
    [audio: 090730lfethics.mp3]

    Ingrid Reed is a policy analyst at Rutgers’ Eagleton Institute of Politics. She says the study shows there are gaps in the local ethics system for New Jersey officials. For example, Reed says, the local ethics code doesn’t ban nepotism and there’s no required ethics training.

    Reed: It just seems that given New Jersey’s problems with ethics and how many people come into local government every year and could use that kind of orientation: what is this all about, what does it mean to have a conflict of interest? Would really benefit and the state would benefit because there would be a kind of shared value that everyone had talked about and committed to.

    Reed says the report goes to the state ethics commission, and it has been sent to the governor’s office and to state lawmakers who serve on ethics-related committees.

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