Mass. Ethics Comm. In the Matter of John F. Scott

Decision from the Massachusetts Ethics Commission


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts Ethics Commission fined Norfolk property developer Jack Scott for violating section 3 of M.G.L. c. 268A, the conflict of interest law, by offering an illegal gift to a municipal employee. Scott offered a free week’s stay at his fly-fishing cabin in Pennsylvania to the chairman of the Norfolk Conservation Commission at a time when Scott had matters pending before the Commission.

My favorite part is this statement from Scott to the Chairman in an email:

Lastly when you step down from the commission so no one in this dame [sic] town can say anything about anything my cabin is yours for a week with your family... the best trout fishing in the east and great for the kids. Jeff no bribe just a thanks for being on the up and up with us regardless of how this all plays out.

Just saying something is not a bribe does not work. If you offer something of value to a public official when you have a matter in front of the public official, it's going to be considered a bribe.

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Reference Info:Decision | State, 1st Circuit, Massachusetts | United States

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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