Watchdogs

Published — December 13, 2001 Updated — May 19, 2014 at 12:19 pm ET

Michigan

A snapshot of ethics practices in Michigan

Introduction

Michigan is among four states – including North Dakota, South Dakota and Vermont – in which there are no formal ethics laws dealing with ethical conduct of legislator beyond personal financial disclosure and/or campaign finance disclosure requirements. Michigan is also among seven states — including Indiana, Illinois, New York, North Carolina, Ohio and South Carolina — in which an outside agency is setup to oversee other divisions of government.

More Info

What, if any, ethics agency exists in the state?

Michigan has the Michigan State Board of Ethics, which is enabled by the Michigan Compiled Laws 15.341 – 15.348. The board does not have jurisdiction over state legislators, members of the judicial branch or elected persons in the executive branch. It oversees employees, classified and unclassified, of the executive branch of state government. It also oversees public officers appointed by the Governor and other executive department officials.
http://www.state.mi.us/mdcs/ethicsboard.htm

If the above agency does not oversee legislators, is legislative oversight defined in statute?

No.

Are there state statutes that address ethical conduct for legislators?

No. Michigan has no statute regarding ethics and disclosure beyond sections pertaining candidates’ campaign finance disclosure, which is governed by the Michigan Department of State, Bureau of Elections.
http://www.sos.state.mi.us/election/elect.html

Michigan Compiled Laws 15.341 – 15.348, “State Ethics Act” applies to the same people the state ethics commission oversees and does not apply to legislators.
http://www.state.mi.us/mdcs/Ethact.htm

When were the ethics statutes enacted?

N/A

Where do legislators file outside interest disclosures?

No disclosure required. See Info Resources.

Where do legislators file campaign finance disclosures?

Michigan Department of State, Bureau of Elections
http://www.sos.state.mi.us/election/elect.html

Where are lobbying disclosures filed?

Michigan Department of State, Bureau of Elections
http://www.sos.state.mi.us/election/elect.html

Note: Some information provided by the Council on Governmental Ethics Laws’ “Ethics Update” 2000. For more information or to purchase the reference, visit www.cogel.org.

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