policy
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Policy

City law requires the Ethics Commission to evaluate the effectiveness of its laws. This is done on a regular basis through internally generated policy reviews. It also occurs on an ad hoc basis when distinct issues are of interest to the Ethics Commission members, such as when the City Council asks for an evaluation of a particular law or when an amendment to City law is required to reflect changes in state or federal law.

CURRENT REVIEWS

  • Lobbying Laws

    Background

    In 2018, the Ethics Commission recommended that the City Council adopt a comprehensive set of updates to the City’s lobbying laws. The Municipal Lobbying Ordinance (MLO) had not been thoroughly updated since 1994, and the Ethics Commission spent two years conducting research and analyzing laws around the country.

    The Ethics Commission also extensively engaged the public during the review. Feedback was solicited and provided at five public commission meetings, five interested persons meetings, and four meetings with groups representing more than 65 neighborhood councils. The Ethics Commission also sent multiple emails to its more than 8,500 subscribers and created a page on its website to solicit public input.

    Because no legislative action was taken on the 2018 recommendations, they expired in March 2020. At its December 2020 meeting, the Ethics Commission expressed an interest in the possibility of a new set of lobbying recommendations and asked staff to solicit additional feedback from the public and regulated communities.  Staff held three special meetings in January for public comment, and another public meeting in March for interested persons to discuss the way the City’s lobbying laws apply to Business Improvement Districts.

    Next Steps

    The Ethics Commission would like to hear from you! 

    Please tell us what you think about the 2018 recommendations or the lobbying laws in general, and how they apply to lobbying entities such as lobbyists, lobbyist employers, lobbying firms, development expediters, Business Improvement Districts, nonprofit organizations, etc. 

    You may provide public comment through the Public Comment tab on this page or by emailing us at ethics.policy@lacity.org

PUBLIC COMMENT

The Ethics Commission would like to hear from you! 

The Ethics Commission is currently soliciting public comment on the lobbying laws and the commission's 2018 recommendations.  Please tell us what you think about the recommendations or the lobbying laws in general, and how they apply to lobbying entities such as lobbyists, lobbyist employers, lobbying firms, development expediters, Business Improvement Districts, nonprofit organizations, etc. 

You may provide public comment by completing the form below or emailing us at ethics.policy@lacity.org.  Staff will also be holding special meetings online in January for additional feedback.  For details, please visit our Meetings page. 

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PROCESS

The review process involves public input, research, data analysis, and internal staff discussions. Based on all of that information, the staff makes initial determinations about what recommendations, if any, to present to the Ethics Commission members. Some reviews address limited issues, and others involve a comprehensive review of an entire ordinance, which can take months or years to complete.


The Ethics Commission members consider policy recommendations at public meetings and must vote to approve, modify, or reject them. The Ethics Commission cannot amend City ordinances, so any approved recommendation that would amend an ordinance must be forwarded to the City Council for action. The Ethics Commission can adopt formal policies that interpret existing ordinances, and those are effective upon approval.


Additional details about the legislative review process are depicted in The Path of Policy.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

For questions regarding specific scenarios, please contact us prior to taking action.

  • How can I find out what happened with a legislative proposal that the Ethics Commission made to the City Council?

    Every meeting agenda includes a policy update, which tracks the status of the Ethics Commission’s legislative proposals. The updates identify the council file number of each proposal, which can be used to obtain additional information through the City Clerk’s council file index.

  • What will your next policy review be about?

    The policy update that is included in every meeting agenda also identifies a tentative schedule of upcoming policy projects. This “horizon snapshot” is fluid and can change at any time, but it does identify intended time lines as of the day the snapshot is created.

  • I provided comments during a review, but I don’t see my comments in the staff recommendations. Why not?

    Public comments are an extremely valuable part of the review process. However, there are typically many different views about issues, which means that not everyone’s ideas can be included. The staff assesses all input, as well as their own experiences in administering the laws and what they discover through data analysis. They then make an initial determination about how to best promote equity, transparency, and accountability. Whether they are incorporated into the staff recommendations or not, all written comments are provided to the Ethics Commission members, to help inform their decisions. You are also welcome to attend Ethics Commission meetings to verbally enter your comments into the record.

  • I would rather not put my comments in writing. Can I talk to someone instead?

    Yes. Written comments are valuable because they precisely communicate your perspectives. However, the Ethics Commission staff is happy to talk with anyone who would like to provide input, and verbal comments are considered along with written comments. Please contact us to speak with a staff member.

  • Can I provide comments anonymously?

    Yes.

PUBLIC DATA PORTAL

Search Former Website: Campaign | Lobbying

Search:

CURRENT REVIEWS

Background

In 2018, the Ethics Commission recommended that the City Council adopt a comprehensive set of updates to the City’s lobbying laws. The Municipal Lobbying Ordinance (MLO) had not been thoroughly updated since 1994, and the Ethics Commission spent two years conducting research and analyzing laws around the country.

The Ethics Commission also extensively engaged the public during the review. Feedback was solicited and provided at five public commission meetings, five interested persons meetings, and four meetings with groups representing more than 65 neighborhood councils. The Ethics Commission also sent multiple emails to its more than 8,500 subscribers and created a page on its website to solicit public input.

Because no legislative action was taken on the 2018 recommendations, they expired in March 2020. At its December 2020 meeting, the Ethics Commission expressed an interest in the possibility of a new set of lobbying recommendations and asked staff to solicit additional feedback from the public and regulated communities.  Staff held three special meetings in January for public comment, and another public meeting in March for interested persons to discuss the way the City’s lobbying laws apply to Business Improvement Districts.

Next Steps

The Ethics Commission would like to hear from you! 

Please tell us what you think about the 2018 recommendations or the lobbying laws in general, and how they apply to lobbying entities such as lobbyists, lobbyist employers, lobbying firms, development expediters, Business Improvement Districts, nonprofit organizations, etc. 

You may provide public comment through the Public Comment tab on this page or by emailing us at ethics.policy@lacity.org

PUBLIC COMMENT

The Ethics Commission would like to hear from you! 

The Ethics Commission is currently soliciting public comment on the lobbying laws and the commission's 2018 recommendations.  Please tell us what you think about the recommendations or the lobbying laws in general, and how they apply to lobbying entities such as lobbyists, lobbyist employers, lobbying firms, development expediters, Business Improvement Districts, nonprofit organizations, etc. 

You may provide public comment by completing the form below or emailing us at ethics.policy@lacity.org.  Staff will also be holding special meetings online in January for additional feedback.  For details, please visit our Meetings page. 

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PROCESS

The review process involves public input, research, data analysis, and internal staff discussions. Based on all of that information, the staff makes initial determinations about what recommendations, if any, to present to the Ethics Commission members. Some reviews address limited issues, and others involve a comprehensive review of an entire ordinance, which can take months or years to complete.


The Ethics Commission members consider policy recommendations at public meetings and must vote to approve, modify, or reject them. The Ethics Commission cannot amend City ordinances, so any approved recommendation that would amend an ordinance must be forwarded to the City Council for action. The Ethics Commission can adopt formal policies that interpret existing ordinances, and those are effective upon approval.


Additional details about the legislative review process are depicted in The Path of Policy.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

For questions regarding specific scenarios, please contact us prior to taking action.

  • How can I find out what happened with a legislative proposal that the Ethics Commission made to the City Council?

    Every meeting agenda includes a policy update, which tracks the status of the Ethics Commission’s legislative proposals. The updates identify the council file number of each proposal, which can be used to obtain additional information through the City Clerk’s council file index.

  • What will your next policy review be about?

    The policy update that is included in every meeting agenda also identifies a tentative schedule of upcoming policy projects. This “horizon snapshot” is fluid and can change at any time, but it does identify intended time lines as of the day the snapshot is created.

  • I provided comments during a review, but I don’t see my comments in the staff recommendations. Why not?

    Public comments are an extremely valuable part of the review process. However, there are typically many different views about issues, which means that not everyone’s ideas can be included. The staff assesses all input, as well as their own experiences in administering the laws and what they discover through data analysis. They then make an initial determination about how to best promote equity, transparency, and accountability. Whether they are incorporated into the staff recommendations or not, all written comments are provided to the Ethics Commission members, to help inform their decisions. You are also welcome to attend Ethics Commission meetings to verbally enter your comments into the record.

  • I would rather not put my comments in writing. Can I talk to someone instead?

    Yes. Written comments are valuable because they precisely communicate your perspectives. However, the Ethics Commission staff is happy to talk with anyone who would like to provide input, and verbal comments are considered along with written comments. Please contact us to speak with a staff member.

  • Can I provide comments anonymously?

    Yes.

PUBLIC DATA PORTAL

Search Former Website: Campaign | Lobbying

Search: