Code of Ethics

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Amherst County Board of Supervisors

CODE OF ETHICS

 

Recognizing that public officials hold office as a public trust, and that their stewardship of such office requires a superior degree of ethical and moral conduct on their part, any person serving on the Amherst County Board of Supervisors  agrees to adhere to:

 

  1. Uphold federal, state, and local laws, and never knowingly be a party to their evasion.
  2. Respect and uphold the Constitution of the United States and never act in a way that will restrict individual liberties. Board members should operate from a belief that the Constitution is the road map for every decision that the Board makes.
  3. Put loyalty to the County as a whole above loyalty to individuals, districts, or particular groups.
  4. Dedicate sincere effort and service to the position of trust for which stewardship has been granted, giving earnest action and best thought to the performance of duties in an ethical manner.
  5. Seek to find and use the most equitable, efficient, effective, and economical means for accomplishing County business.
  6. Adopt policies and programs that support the rights and recognize the needs of all citizens regardless of race, sex, age, religion, creed, country of origin or disability.
  7. Ensure the integrity of the actions of the Board of Supervisors by avoiding discrimination through the dispensing of special favors or unfair privileges to anyone, whether for remuneration or not. A member should never accept for himself or herself or for family members, favors or benefits under circumstances that might be construed by reasonable persons as influencing the performance of governmental duties.
  8. Make no private promises of any kind which purport to bind performance of public duty.
  9. Engage in no business with the County government, or the school system, either directly or indirectly, which is inconsistent with the conscientious performance of government duties, and ensure full compliance with the Conflict of Interest Act (Code of Virginia, Title 2.2, Chapter 31).
  10. Never use any information gained confidentially in the performance of governmental duties as a means of making private profit.
  11. Adhere to the principle that the public’s business should be conducted in the public view by observing and following the letter and spirit of the Freedom of Information Act, using closed meetings only as authorized by the Code of Virginia.
  12. Avoid involvement, or the perception thereof, in matters that when completed, come before the Board of Supervisors for resolution or approval.
  13. Seek to communicate fairly and equally with all other Board members outside of formal meetings; avoid excluding one or more Board members from information shared with others, while consistently maintaining adherence to the requirements of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act.
  14. Never use a position of public trust to gain access to the public or the media for purposes of criticizing colleagues, staff, or citizens, impugning their integrity, or vilifying their personal beliefs.
  15. Ensure, when responding to the media, that a clear distinction is made between personal opinion or belief and a decision made by the Board.
  16. Review in public session at the annual organizational meeting each of these principles.
  17. Pledge to honor and uphold these principles, ever conscious that public office is a public trust.