Ethics: Advisory Opinion No. 2002-25

Advisory Opinion No. 2002-25
Advisory Opinion No. 2002-25

Application Of Ethics Code’s Post-State Employment ProvisionsTo A State Employee Whose Last Day On The Job Is Earlier Than Her Resignation Date

Brenda Bergeron, Principal Attorney for the State Ethics Commission, has posed the following hypothetical question concerning the determination of the date an individual ceases to be a state employee or public official.

Under the hypothetical, an individual’s last day on the job for the State is earlier than his or her actual resignation date. For example, assume this individual’s last day in the office doing state work is December 20, 2002, but she will use her accrued vacation time for another six weeks and her resignation day, therefore, will be at the end of this six week time period. For the purpose of Chapter 10, Part I of the Connecticut General Statutes, the question raised by this hypothetical is whether this individual’s last day as a state employee is her last day doing work for the state, or the last day she uses accrued vacation time? The question is relevant because of statutory provisions that limit certain activities and employment within one year of leaving state service. See subsections (b), (c), (f), and (j) of Conn. Gen. Stat. 1-84b(b).

Common sense dictates that a person remains a state employee until his or her official resignation day -- that is, the last day for which the employee receives compensation, whether it is a work day or a paid vacation day. The statutory language, itself, supports this conclusion. Subsection 1-84b(b) limits a state employee or public official from appearing before one’s former agency, department, board, commission or council "for one year after leaving state service." Subdivision (2) of subsection (c) limits a state employee from accepting employment with a business subject to regulation by his or her agency to "within one year after leaving an agency." In pertinent part, subsection (f) limits a state employee or public official from accepting employment with a party to a contract in which the state employee or public official participated substantially in its negotiation or award "for a period of one year after his resignation from his state office or position." And, subsection (j) prohibits the State Treasurer who authorizes, negotiates or renegotiates a contract for investment services from negotiating for, seeking or accepting employment with a party to the contract "prior to one year after the end of the Treasurer’s term of office." Such language contemplates that the one-year time period does not commence to run until the public official or state employee has left state service.

One does not officially leave state service until his or her resignation date. Accordingly, the Commission finds that an individual resigning from state service does not cease being a state employee or public official until the day after his or her resignation date.

By order of the Commission,

Rosemary Giuliano
Chairperson

 



Content Last Modified on 9/7/2005 8:04:20 AM