The Board of Ethics was asked to re-consider a portion of a previously rendered opinion relating to whether an employee in a management position in the Department of Parks could also carry on a personal business as a for-hire charter boat providing services in the Town of Brookhaven. The previous decision, dated June 17, 2020, involved the utilization of Town of Brookhaven-owned dock facilities located at Davis Park, Cherry Grove, and Fire Island Pines (all within the Town of Brookhaven), as well as the use of privately-owned docks, some of which are located in those hamlets.
The applicant’s request to re-consider the June 17, 2020, decision is limited to the Board of Ethics’ determination that the use of privately-owned dock facilities violated the Code of Ethics of the Town of Brookhaven.
The Code of Ethics §28-5(A)(2) states:
2. General prohibition. A Town officer or employee shall not use his or her official position or office, or take or fail to take any action, in a manner which he or she knows or has reason to know may result in a personal benefit, financial or otherwise, for any of the following persons:
(a) The Town officer or employee;(b) His or her outside employer or business;(c) A member of his or her household;(d) A customer or client (current or within the past five years); or(e) A family member.
The Code of Ethics §28-1(B) states that “[t]he proper administration of the government of the Town of Brookhaven requires its officers and employees, whether elected or appointed, paid or unpaid, including members of any administrative boards, commissions or other agencies, to be impartial and free from conflicts of interest, or even the appearance of conflicts…”
The use of Town of Brookhaven-owned dock facilities by the applicant in connection with his private for-hire charter business would clearly violate §28-5(A)(2)(a), (b) and/or (d), and would create the appearance of a conflict of interest.
However, based upon the applicant’s acceptance of the Board’s determination regarding the use of Town of Brookhaven-owned dock facilities and limiting the scope of business to privately-owned docks, the Board of Ethics hereby amends its previous decision and finds that the aforementioned limited use would not be violative of the Town of Brookhaven Code of Ethics.
This determination is rendered upon the understanding that the applicant has agreed to refrain from utilizing any Town of Brookhaven-owned dock facilities at any time in connection with his private for-hire charter boat business.
Any violation involving the use of Town of Brookhaven-owned dock facilities in connection with the applicant’s private for-hire charter boat business may subject the applicant to potential disciplinary action.