CEO 75-139 -- June 23, 1975






To:      Charles J. Woods, Member, School Advisory Committee, Sarasota


Prepared by:   Jeff Trammel




A member of a local school advisory committee established by the school board and exercising solely advisory functions is not a public officer pursuant to s. 112.312(7)(b), F. S. (1974 Supp.). As such committees have no power beyond that of making recommendations to the school board, their members meet the advisory board exemption of the above-cited section.




Am I, as a member of one of the school advisory committees of Sarasota County, a public officer within the definition of that term in the Code of Ethics and therefore subject to the requirements of financial disclosure?


This question is answered in the negative.


As you note in your letter of inquiry, the school advisory committees of Sarasota County were established pursuant to s. 230.22(1)(b), F. S. 1973. That paragraph states in part:


The school board shall establish a school advisory committee or committees but such school advisory committees shall not have any of the powers and duties now reserved by law to the school board. (Emphasis supplied.)


The duties and functions of these committees, composed of 100 lay citizens of Sarasota County, are to formulate recommendations for the operation of the county's public schools. Each committee advises the particular school it represents. The school advisory committees do not have authority to expend funds, determine policy, or perform any other function which would negate their advisory status.

In s. 112.312(7)(b), F. S. (1974 Supp.), a public officer is defined to include:


Members of Boards, commissions, authorities, special taxing districts, and the head of each state agency, however selected but excluding advisory board members. (Emphasis supplied.)


Consequent to serving on a solely advisory board, you are excluded from this definition of public officer. It follows that, as the financial disclosure provisions of the Code of Ethics are applicable only to public officers and candidates, you are not required to make financial disclosure.