(UPDATE 3:07 p.m.)—Baltimore City Council President Bernard C. "Jack" Young is submitting legislation to strengthen the prohibition on City Council members accepting or soliciting gifts.
The legislation is being introduced to the council on Monday, and would prevent council members from receiving gifts from anyone seeking to do business with the city. Currently council members are only prohibited from taking gifts from people who want to do business with the City Council itself, according to a news release from Young’s office.
"My colleagues on the City Council and I are serious about upholding the trust of the citizens we are elected to serve," Young said in the release. "This piece of legislation shows a continued willingness on the part of this Council to hold itself to only the highest of ethical standards."
Council members are allowed two exceptions: one is that they may accept food or beverage consumed in the presence of the person seeking to or doing business with the city, and the second allows a council person to take a gift valued at $20 or less, but can only receive $100 worth of those gifts in one reporting cycle.
The legislation is being introduced at the behest of the Baltimore City Board of Ethics.