Part 21 of our 36-part series “35 States and One Congress More Ethical Than Missouri” looks at Mississippi.
State law reads:
“No public servant shall use his official position to obtain pecuniary benefit for himself other than that compensation provided for by law, or to obtain pecuniary benefit for any relative or any business with which he is associated.”
Mississippi goes on to define “pecuniary benefit” as anything of values including loans, forgiveness of debt, and GIFTS. The only exceptions to this are meals for immediate consumption up to $10 PER CALENDAR YEAR.
Mississippi is like a handful of states that show zero tolerance for lobbyist largesse and codify that intolerance into a short, sweet, and clear statute.
Mississippi is to be commended to understanding the problems that are caused with lobbyist gift-giving free-for-alls. Mississippi isn’t given too much credit for good and responsible government policy. But with respect to ethics, they are one of the leading states.
Mississippi gets it. Unfortunately, Missouri still doesn’t.
Support the Missouri Gift-Ban Pledge and legislation regulating lobbyist gift-giving.