SB 70 - This act modifies the operations and procedures of the Missouri Ethics Commission (the Commission).
Currently, Commission filings are deemed timely filed if postmarked not later than midnight of the day previous to the last day of the filing deadline. Under the act, such filings are timely filed if postmarked not later than midnight of the deadline date.
Currently, the Director of the Commission shall not serve for more than 6 years. This act repeals that limit.
All committees that are required to file financial disclosure reports with the Commission are required to file in an electronic format.
Currently, conflicting requirements exist that require the Commission to dismiss a complaint if they find no probable cause but allows the Commission to investigate when there is are reasonable grounds to investigate. The act repeals the provisions requiring the Commission to dismiss when there is no probable cause.
Currently, the executive director is required to review reports and statements that are required to be filed with the Commission. This act allows the executive director to also examine records relating to those reports and statements.
Currently, redundant language exists in Sections 105.951 and 105.961 relating to the ability of the Commission to investigate complaints. The act repeals the references in Section 105.951.
Currently, within 120 days of receipt of a complaint, the special investigator submits a report to the commission. This act changes that threshold to 90 days.
Determinations that violations have occurred, other than referrals for criminal prosecution, may be appealed de novo to the Circuit Court of Cole County.
Confidentiality provisions in Section 105.961 that conflict with provisions in Section 105.959 are repealed.
The act allows the executive director to send notices of failure to file by mail and any other means instead of only by registered mail. Evidence that notices were properly addressed and sent by mail or electronic mail to the address designated by the committee creates a rebuttable presumption the notice was received.
The act allows the Commission to collect late filing fees by filing a certified statement of account with the Cole County Circuit Court. Unpaid fees may be collected through garnishment and execution against the committee's official depository account. Lobbyists required to file expenditure reports, individuals required to file financial disclosure reports, and candidates and committees required to file disclosure statements may appeal late fee assessments in the same manner with the commission.
The act removes a provision allowing extra time for investigations when they are assigned to a retired judge and a provision allowing the commission to file a petition to seek extra time.
This act is similar to CCS#3/HCS#2/SB 844 (2010).