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About Financial Disclosure


Notice: Effective October 30, 2015, amendments to the County's Public Ethics Law changed financial disclosure requirements to meet State of Maryland requirements.  Most significantly, all filed disclosure statements will be publicly available.  There are a number of changes to the financial disclosure form and the electronic filing system to accommodate the changes to the law.  In terms of content of required disclosures, the amended law, in general, requires an increased level of detail from elected officials, but a decreased level from other filers.  Filers will be guided by prompts regarding the information that must be provided.  Due to the changes to the form and online disclosure system, there will be no "copy data" function available for filing 2015 annual financial disclosure reports (so automatic copying of data from a previously filed statement will not be possible).

What is the Financial Disclosure Statement?

When do I file the Financial Disclosure Statement?

General Filing Instructions

Filing Tips

Important Information for Final Filers


What is the Financial Disclosure Statement?

The County's Ethics Law (Chapter 19A of the Montgomery County Code) requires certain County employees, certain members of Boards, Committees, and Commissions, and certain employees of the Housing Opportunities Commission to file financial disclosure statements.  All financial disclosure statements are publicly available.  If you are designated to file a financial disclosure statement, you will be notified of your obligation to do so by the Ethics Commission.

When do I file the Financial Disclosure Statement?

Commencement of Employment Within 15 days after the employee or volunteer is notified by the Ethics Commission of the obligation to file an Initial financial disclosure statement
Annual Disclosures The first business day in January through April 15 for the previous calendar year
Termination of Employment Before the employee or volunteer who is in a position required to file terminates employment or service.  A final paycheck will not be issued until the employee has filed the required financial disclosure statement.

When entering a position, the filer submits an "Initial" financial disclosure, which covers the prior calendar year as well as the portion of the current year up to the date of filing.  Every year after filing the "Initial" financial disclosure, filers must submit "Annual" disclosures that cover the previous calendar year.  And when leaving a filing position, filers submit a "Final" financial disclosure, which covers the time period from the end of the last filing period up to the date of separation from the filing position.

General Filing Instructions

NEW: General overview of updated financial disclosure system: https://prezi.com/view/JemDj32mK0yRngEoW26k/

Filing Tips

1.  In the real property section, the cost of the property is no longer required (except for elected officials who will continue to provide that information).  Also, all real estate interests held, including leases, regardless of location must now be listed.

2.   In the section on ownership of corporations, partnerships, or other business interests, while stocks and the like still need to be disclosed, the value of holdings and how much was paid for them is no longer required to be disclosed (except for elected officials.)

3.  The income section now excludes unearned income and also excludes income from County employment.  

4.  The threshold for reportable gifts from “restricted sources” has changed to gifts worth more than $20.  Gifts to employees from restricted sources worth more than $20 must be disclosed regardless of whether they have been accepted pursuant to an exception under the gift law (19A-16(d)).

5.  Indebtedness to and positions with persons “doing business with” the County is required to be reported.  Also, if a source of income of an employee (or immediate family member) is “doing business with the County” that fact is required to be disclosed.  For purposes of reporting, doing business means entering contracts, grants or other agreements involving the exchange of at least $1,000 for goods and/or services.  It does not include routine payments of fees, taxes, or use of County provided programs or services, even where payments may be involved, such as through an application for a permit.  For example, a bank holds a mortgage on an employee’s house; the bank submits tax payments on behalf of the employee to the County, and itself pays taxes on property it owns in Montgomery County.  These activities do not constitute “doing business with” the County for purposes of the financial disclosure reporting requirements. Some insight to banks "doing business with" the County may be obtained through use of the County's contract search function at http://www2.montgomerycountymd.gov/ICCS/.

6.  In the indebtedness section, the interest rate is no longer required (except for elected officials.)

Important Information for Final Filers

If an employee is leaving a filing position as a result of separating from County employment, failure to file a "Final" disclosure will result in a hold being placed on the employee's final paycheck until the disclosure is completed.

READ THE INSTRUCTIONS FOR EACH SEPARATE SECTION!!!
 

 

Montgomery County Ethics Commission · 100 Maryland Avenue · Room 204 · Rockville, Maryland 20850
Ethics.Commission@montgomerycountymd.gov · Telephone: 240-777-6670 · Fax: 240-777-6672
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