The County Voice

ILG Offers Ethics Resources and AB 1234 Training

The Institute for Local Government (ILG) Ethics and Transparency Program aims to help local officials understand the unique legal and ethical obligations of being a public servant. In California, state and federal laws create a complex set of requirements that guide elected officials and agency staff in their service to their communities.

Transparency can go a long way to increase public trust and confidence. ILG offers a variety of trainings, tools and resources to help local officials and staff comply with ethics laws and increase transparency in their community.

Ethics Resources

In California, state and federal laws create a complex set of requirements and laws that guide elected officials and agency staff in their service to their communities. ILG’s Understanding the Basics of Public Service Ethics Laws resource includes information about transparency, fair processes, consequences, federal ethics laws and regulations related to personal gain, gifts and other perks. Find it here.

ILG has also developed a Good Governance Checklist. This checklist helps local officials and staff determine what practices they can put in place to promote public trust and confidence and minimize the risk of missteps that could undermine that trust. It identifies practices that are necessary to comply with California law and ways they can go above and beyond legal requirements. Access the checklist here.

AB 1234 Trainings

California law requires local officials to periodically receive training on public service ethics laws and principles (AB 1234). ILG offers trainings and self-test options to help local officials comply with this law.

ILG’s offers two, one-hour self-study exercises as an option for local officials to satisfy AB 1234 requirements. The self-study materials can also be used to make up for time missed at in-person sessions if the official either arrived late or left early. Learn more here.

ILG can also come to your county to train your local officials and staff. Contact us at for more information on how to schedule an ethics workshop.

Everyday Ethics Columns

ILG also offers a collection of informative articles analyzing different ethical dilemmas public officials face.

For example, Deciding When to Step Aside from the Decision-Making Process: Abstentions and Disqualifications outlines when county officials should abstain from votes, circumstances that disqualify an official from voting and how to proceed in each instance. Read more.

Get Your Public Meetings Back on Track offers strategies and tips to make your public meetings more productive and effective including setting standards of conduct for meeting, how to prepare and how to deal with disruptive participants. Get more information.

The “Front Page” Test: An Easy Ethics Standard suggests that local officials ask themselves “How would I feel if the course of action I am considering were reported on the front page of the local newspaper or blog?” Find out more.

Find all of ILG’s Ethics columns here. And to learn more about ILG’s ethics and transparency work visit:

CSAC will also offer AB 1234 training at our Annual Meeting in Riverside County Nov. 29 through Dec. 2 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. Registration will open in August.

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