Below are the guidelines that can be used for submitting a complaint to the Local Finance Board. Please keep in mind that this outline simplifies what is set forth in the statute and the regulations.
For a complete understanding of the law and the process for filing a complaint, please refer to the N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.5 and N.J.A.C. 5:35-1.1 et seq. A link to the Local Government Ethics Law is provided below:
If after reviewing the statute and regulations, you feel there has been a violation of the Local Government Ethics Law and you wish to submit a complaint, please send it to the attention of Thomas H. Neff, Chair, Local Finance Board, P.O. Box 803, Trenton, NJ 08625-0803.
GUIDELINES FOR FILING A COMPLAINT
TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT ETHICS LAW
N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.1 et seq.
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.1 et. seq., the Local Finance Board (Board) within the Division of Local Government Services, has the power to initiate, receive, hear and review complaints, hold hearings and enforce the provisions of the act and impose penalties with regard to possible violations of the Local Government Ethics Law.
Specifically, N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.5 sets forth the code of ethics for local government officers or employees who fall under the jurisdiction of the Board. If the actions of a local government officer or employee have violated any of the provisions of the ethical standards contained in N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.5, a complaint may be filed against that individual and submitted in accordance with the process set forth in N.J.A.C. 5:35-1.1(a) and (b) and outlined below.
Every complaint alleging that a local government officer or employee, who is not regulated by a county or municipal code of ethics, shall be in writing and signed by the complainant and shall include the following:
· Identify each section of the Local Government Ethics Law alleged to be violated as set forth in N.J.S.A. 40A:9-22.5;
· State the name(s) and title(s) of each party involved in the action and against whom the complaint is filed;
· Set forth in detail the pertinent facts surrounding each alleged violative action;
· Indicate whether the complaint concerns the complainant in any way and what, if any, relationship the complainant has to the subject of the complaint; and
· Indicate any other action previously taken in an attempt to resolve the issue and indicate whether the issue is the subject of pending litigation elsewhere.
Provide, if available, all supporting information for each alleged violative action.
If a complaint is submitted anonymously, the Board may review the complaint and authorize an investigation but the complainant will not be notified of the outcome of the investigation.
Note that the Board shall not process a complaint on a matter which is pending in a court of law or administrative agency of the State.