CEO 77-12 -- February 1, 1977
SCHOOL DISTRICT EMPLOYEES
APPLICABILITY OF FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE LAW
To: (Name withheld at the person's request.)
Prepared by: Bonnie Johnson
A district school superintendent and a purchasing agent authorized to make purchases in excess of $100 constitute local officers subject to the annual filing of financial disclosure. See ss. 112.3145(1)(a)3. and 112.3145(2)(b), F. S. 1975. Business managers, finance and accounting directors, personnel officers, and grants coordinators for the school district are not subject to the disclosure law, however, as they do not serve a state agency as mandated in s. 112.3145(1)(b)5., defining the term "specified employee." Nor does the disclosure law specify the position of school board attorney in the definitions of those persons subject to financial disclosure.
1. Do a district school superintendent and a purchasing agent authorized to make any purchase exceeding $100 constitute "local officers" subject to the annual filing of statements of financial interests?
2. Are business managers, finance and accounting directors, personnel officers, and grants coordinators for the school district subject to the financial disclosure law?
3. Am I, as attorney for a school district subject to financial disclosure requirements?
Question 1 is answered in the affirmative.
Section 112.3145(2)(b), F. S. 1975, requires that each local officer annually file financial disclosure. The term "local officer" is defined to include:
Any person holding one or more of the following positions, by whatever title, including persons appointed to act directly in such capacity, but excluding assistants and deputies unless specifically named herein: clerk of the circuit court; clerk of the county court; county or city manager; political subdivision chief; county or city administrator; county or city attorney; chief county or city building inspector; county or city water resources coordinator; county or city pollution control director; county or city environmental control director; county or city administrator, with power to grant or deny a land development permit; chief of police; fire chief; city or town clerk; district school superintendent; community college presidents; or a purchasing agent having the authority to make any purchase exceeding $100 for any political subdivision of the state or any entity thereof. [Section 112.3145(1)(a)3., F. S. 1975; emphasis supplied.]
Accordingly, a district school superintendent, as well as any person having authority to make a purchase in excess of $100 for the district or any school or department thereof, constitutes a local officer subject to financial disclosure requirements of the Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees.
Question 2 is answered in the negative.
Like local officers, certain "specified employees" are required to make financial disclosure on an annual basis. That term, however, is defined to include various positions only at the state level of government. The portion of the definition of "specified employee" referenced in your letter of inquiry, for example, is as follows:
Business managers, purchasing agents, finance and accounting directors, personnel officers, and grants coordinators for any state agency, or persons having the power normally conferred upon such persons, by whatever title. [Section 112.3145(1)(b)5., F. S. 1975; emphasis supplied.]
We would further point out that all subparagraphs under (1)(a), defining "local officer," specifically provide that positions enumerated therein relate to political subdivisions, while paragraph (1)(b) makes no reference to governmental entities or positions other than those at the state level.
Question 3 is answered in the negative.
Based on the rationale in reply to question 2 above, in order to be subject to the annual filing of disclosure a school board attorney must meet the definition of "local officer." As no such position is enumerated within that definition, we accordingly find that you do not constitute a local officer subject to disclosure by virtue of your serving as attorney to the district school board.