The Attorney General's Office assists the Florida Commission on Ethics by providing attorneys who serve as the Commission's prosecutors or "Advocates." Once the Commission has received and investigated a sworn Complaint alleging that a public officer or employee has breached the public trust, the Advocate assigned to the case makes a recommendation as to whether the case should go forward. If it does, it is the Advocate who conducts the prosecution, through an administrative hearing under Chapter 120. Advocates also handle some appeals, and collect civil penalties when a violation is found.
Most state and local government employees, as well as elected and appointed officials, are subject to the Commission's jurisdiction, and the types of violations investigated range from erroneous financial disclosure filings to misuse of office. Information about the Ethics Commission, as well as formal opinions, orders, and forms, can be found at their web site at http://www.ethics.state.fl.us or by calling the Commission at (850) 488-7864.For more information on this bureau, please call 850-414-3300.