by Max Brantley
The House may vote today on HB 1968 to stiffen conflict-of-interest law concerning members of state boards and commissions. In short, it would allow the Ethics Commission to fine members who knowingly cast votes on issues in which they, family members or employers have a direct financial interest.
Good government? Of course it is. Some background here from Citizens First Congress.
You can probably send it to the scrap heap with other good government legislation. Why? It's opposed by the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce and the Farm Bureau. If you can't vote on issues in which you have a direct financial interest, why would you want to serve on a state board in the first place? See Thomas Schueck, the polluter who bullies the so-called Pollution Control and Ecology Commission around and dozens of others.
UPDATE: House passed over the bill this morning. It's likely dead. Too much opposition. Too little time.