Chapter 101-7 Adjudication Procedures
(A) "Chairman" means the member of the committee appointed as chairman pursuant to section 101.34 of the Revised Code.
(B) "Charge" means any accusation or other information, from any source, which alleges or indicates that a violation of Chapter 102. of the Revised Code may have occurred.
(C) "Committee" means the joint legislative ethics committee created pursuant to section 101.34 of the Revised Code.
(D) "Complainant" means any person, including the committee, a member of the committee, or a member of the staff of the committee, who has filed a complaint with the committee.
(E) "Complaint" means a formal complaint filed with or initiated by the committee in accordance with section 102.06 of the Revised Code, concerning conduct alleged to be in violation of Chapter 102. of the Revised Code.
(F) "Executive director" means the executive director appointed by the committee pursuant to section 101.34 of the Revised Code.
(G) "Party" means the committee, the respondent, and their representatives.
(H) "Representative" means any person whom the committee has authorized to appear or act on its behalf, or any person whom the complainant, respondent, or a witness has authorized to appear or act on his behalf before the committee.
(I) "Respondent" means a person against whom a complaint has been filed with the committee.
The jurisdiction of the joint legislative ethics committee is derived from Chapters 101. and 102. of the Revised Code.
Any complaint, charge, inquiry, or investigation relating to the proceedings of the committee shall be private and confidential, and all papers, records, affidavits and documents relating to such matters shall be sealed, except as otherwise provided in this chapter.
(A) The committee shall investigate all complaints and may investigate charges.
(B) The committee may request additional information if the information sought is directly relevant to a complaint or charges received by the committee. The committee may request the specific amount of income from a source from any person filing with the committee a financial disclosure statement required under section 102.02 of the Revised Code.
(1) Such information is confidential
(2) A person from whom information is requested under this paragraph shall furnish the information to the committee, unless within fifteen days after the date of the request the person files an action for declaratory judgment challenging the legitimacy of the committee's request in the court of common pleas of his county of residence or employment, or of Franklin county. The required information need not be furnished during the pendency of the judicial proceeding and, except as otherwise provided in section 102.06 of the Revised Code and this chapter, proceedings of the committee in connection with such actions shall be confidential.
(C) The executive director shall report to the committee on each investigation. The report shall include a recommendation for action by the committee.
(A) The committee shall receive and may initiate complaints concerning conduct alleged to be in violation of Chapter 102. Of the Revised Code against persons for whom the committee is the "appropriate ethics committee" under division (F)(1) of section 102.01 of the Revised Code.
(B) The committee shall take no formal action against any person unless a complaint has been filed against that person. All complaints, except those by the committee, shall be by affidavit made on personal knowledge, subject to the penalties of perjury. Complaints by the committee shall be by affidavit, based upon reasonable cause to believe that a violation has occurred.
(C) A complaint shall be in writing, and shall include the following:
(1) The name, address, and public position of the person against whom the complaint is filed.
(2) A citation of the specific provision of Chapter 102. of the Revised Code alleged to have been violated.
(3) A statement of the essential facts constituting the offense charged.
(4) The name, address, and signature of the person filing the complaint.
(5) The complaint shall be sworn before a notary public or other person authorized to take oaths.
(D) A complaint shall be considered filed when it is received by the chairman. The chairman shall mark the date and time the complaint is received and acknowledge receipt of the complaint with his signature.
(E) The chairman shall identify complaints that are not within the jurisdiction of the committee, complaints not supported by affidavit made on personal knowledge, and complaints otherwise determined to be incomplete or technically defective, and shall return such complaints to the complainant with an explanation of each defect and, if appropriate, a description of the steps necessary to correct any technical defect. The chairman shall present to the committee all complaints to be returned under this paragraph, prior to its return.
(F) The committee shall consider each complaint to determine whether the complaint is frivolous, and whether there is reasonable cause to believe that the facts alleged in the complaint constitute a violation of section 102.02, 102.03, 102.031 or 102.04 of the Revised Code. If the committee determines that the complaint is not frivolous and that there is reasonable cause to believe that the facts alleged in the complaint constitute a violation of section 102.02, 102.03, 102.031 or 102.04 of the Revised Code, it shall hold a hearing. The chairman of the committee shall promptly notify the respondent, in accordance with paragraph (H) of this rule, that a complaint has been filed, and enclose a copy of the complaint. If the committee does not so find, it shall dismiss the complaint.
(G) The committee shall schedule a hearing within forty-five days of the filing of the complaint under paragraph (D) of this rule. If the committee has not scheduled a hearing within ninety days after the complaint is filed, it shall dismiss the complaint, and upon the request of the accused, make a public report of that finding, but all evidence and the record shall remain confidential unless the accused person also requests that such evidence and the record be made public.
(H) The respondent shall be given reasonable notice of the date, time, and place of the hearing, and a statement of the charges and the law directly involved. Notice shall be made by certified mail, or by delivering a copy to the respondent personally or by leaving it at his usual place of residence with some person of suitable age and discretion then residing therein. Notice shall be mailed or delivered not later than twenty days prior to the date of the hearing.
(I) The respondent shall be given the opportunity to be represented by counsel, to have counsel appointed for him if he is unable to afford counsel without undue hardship, to examine the evidence against him, to produce evidence, and to call and subpoena witnesses.
(J) Each complaint, except a complaint returned under paragraph (E) of this rule, shall be assigned a number, and such number, the name of the complainant and the respondent, a brief description of the complaint, and any subsequent action on the complaint shall be recorded in a permanent ledger.
(A) Representatives shall enter their appearances in writing.
(B) A person who has entered an appearance as the representative of a party is that party's representative of record until a written withdrawal is filed with the committee.
(A) The committee shall rule on motions, or may designate the chairman or other member of the committee to rule on motions.
(B) All motions shall state, with particularity, both the relief sought by the moving party and the basis for granting such relief.
(C) All motions prior to the hearing shall be in writing, and shall be served together with supporting documentation on the opposing party or his representative.
(A) The committee may continue a hearing upon its own motion or the motion of any party.
(1) Requests for continuance shall be addressed to the chairman of the committee.
(2) Requests for continuance shall be made, in writing, not later than three calendar days prior to the scheduled date of the hearing.
(3) Each party shall contact all of the witnesses he has subpoenaed and inform them of any continuance.
(B) If a continuance is granted, the committee shall establish a new hearing date, and the time within which a hearing must be held shall be extended by the period of any continuance granted.
(C) Absent compelling circumstances, hearings shall not be continued due to the unavailability of a subpoenaed witness. The committee may hold the record open or accept a deposition in lieu of oral testimony.
(A) The committee may issue subpoenas to any person in the state compelling the attendance of witnesses and the production of relevant papers, books, accounts, and records.
(B) The committee shall issue any such subpoena upon the written requests of a party.
(C) Upon the motion and for good cause shown, the committee may quash any subpoena at any time prior to the hearing.
(D) Requests for subpoenas must be received by the committee not later than seven days before the date of the hearing.
(E) Subpoenas shall be served personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested, by the committee or its designee.
(A) Upon the written request of the opposing party, a party shall supply, within seven calendar days of his receipt of the request, a list of the witnesses and the documents he intends to introduce at the hearing.
(B) Upon the written request of the opposing party, a party shall, within seven calendar days of his receipt of the request, permit the opposing party to view and copy, at his own expense, any evidence against him.
(C) Requests for lists for the examination of documents must be received by the party from whom information is sought not later than ten calendar days before the hearing.
(D) If a party fails, without good cause, to comply with this rule, such testimony or documents may, upon motion of the adversely affected party, be excluded from hearing before the committee. The committee shall determine whether a party has complied with this rule.
(E) The committee may continue hearings to permit discovery under this rule.
(F) A party may take the deposition of any witness residing within or without the state in the same manner as prescribed by law for the taking of depositions in civil actions in a court of common pleas. The cost of depositions taken under this paragraph shall be borne by the party calling the witness.
(G) A representative's work product is not subject to discovery.
The committee may admit any relevant evidence that is determined to be reliable, probative, and substantial.
(A) The committee shall schedule a hearing within forty-five days after the filing of a complaint unless a continuance is granted.
(B) The respondent shall be given the opportunity to be represented by counsel, to have counsel appointed for him if he is unable to afford counsel without undue hardship, to examine the evidence against him, to produce evidence and to call and subpoena witnesses in his defense, to confront his accusers, and to cross-examine witnesses.
(C) All witnesses at any hearing before the committee shall testify under oath or affirmation. A witness may be accompanied and advised by legal counsel. Participation by such counsel shall be limited to protection of his client's rights. Counsel for a non-party witness may neither examine nor cross-examine any witness.
(D) If, upon a preponderance of the evidence considered at the hearing, the committee finds that the facts alleged in the complaint are true and constitute a violation of section 102.02, 102.03, 102.031 or 102.04 of the Revised Code, it shall report its findings to the appropriate prosecuting authority and to the appointing or employing authority of the respondent.
(E) If the committee does not find, on the basis of a preponderance of the evidence, that the facts alleged in the complaint are true and constitute a violation of section 102.02, 102.03, 102.031 or 102.04 of the Revised Code, it shall dismiss the complaint.
(F) If a complaint is dismissed, the committee shall, upon the request of the respondent, make a public report of its findings. In such case all evidence and the record of the hearing shall remain confidential unless the respondent requests, in writing, that the evidence and record be made available for public inspection at the office of the committee.
(G) Except as otherwise provided in this rule, all papers, records, affidavits, and documents upon any complaint, inquiry, or investigation relating to the proceedings of the committee shall be sealed and are private and confidential.
(H) A stenographic record shall be made of all hearings conducted under section 102.06 of the Revised Code and this chapter.
(I) All hearings held under authority of section 102.06 of the Revised Code and this chapter shall be closed to the public.
The committee may require briefs from the parties.
(A) The date of occurrence of the event causing time to run is not counted in the computation of any time limit under this chapter. The last day of the period is included in the computation of the time limit. If the last day of a period is not a regular business day, the time period runs through the end of the next regularly scheduled business day.
(B) The committee may extend the time for filing or responding to motions and briefs. Requests for extension of time shall be made, in writing, prior to the expiration of any time limit.