Sivick v. State Ethics Comm’n

In Sivick v. State Ethics Comm’n, the PA Supreme Court addressed the issue of whether the petitioner’s involvement in approving payroll, which included timesheets for the petitioner’s son, violated Subsection 1103(a) of PA’s Ethics Act, simply because the petitioner’s son was a Township employee. The Court ruled that a public officer or employee’s performance of an administrative or ministerial act, which entailed little or no discretion that benefits a subclass that includes an immediate family member, does not, without more, constitute a conflict of interest violation. The Court then held that restitution under the Ethics Act may be imposed only upon public officials and employees who themselves gain financially by violating the Ethics Act, not upon those, like the petitioner, who divert improperly obtained moneys to members of their immediate families.

Sivick