FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Marks the First Time Mandatory Ethics Training Has Occurred Citywide in At Least 25 Years

ATLANTIC CITY, NJ – The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) and City of Atlantic City today announced that nearly all of the city’s approximately 900 employees, including elected officials, police officers, and firefighters, have completed mandatory local government ethics training. This marks the first time mandatory ethics training has occurred across city departments and offices in at least a quarter century. 

Ethics training sessions were held on January 28, February 4, and February 5 in the City Council Chambers of City Hall. City employees were required to attend one of the two-hour sessions. The city is working to schedule an evening session to train those city employees who work night shifts. 

“Important decisions are made by city employees on behalf of the residents they serve every day and they deserve a workforce that is informed of the law and has their best interest in mind,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, who also serves as DCA Commissioner. “The major lesson imparted in the ethics training Atlantic City employees received is that good government starts with each of them. As public servants, they are the guardians of the public trust and should treat that responsibility with the utmost reverence.” 

The Atlantic City Transition Report, which was issued last fall to provide a framework for returning Atlantic City to local control, recommended DCA and Atlantic City develop an ethics training and enforcement program to make it clear that no city employee, including an elected official, may use their official position to benefit privately or to gain special favors that they wouldn’t otherwise get if they weren’t a city official. 

“The City of Atlantic City will always try to offer its employees additional training,” said Mayor Frank M. Gilliam, Jr. “Ethics is the first training piece that we have implemented. Additional training pieces will be rolled out as we progress through 2019 and into 2020. My administration feels that our employees are worth investing in.” 

“We want people who work for Atlantic City to do their jobs honorably and with integrity,” said City Council President Marty Small, Sr. “The ethics training that city employees received will help us achieve this goal.” 

The ethics training covered the local government ethics law in New Jersey, the local government ethics administrative code, the criminal code related to government ethics, financial disclosure statements, and real-life examples. The training also addressed Atlantic City’s history of elected officials and city employees who have been criminally prosecuted for corruption. 

The training was provided through the Local Assistance Bureau of DCA’s Division of Local Government Services (DLGS). The Local Assistance Bureau can provide a variety of government assistance when municipal officials request expertise to address items of local concern. Edward Sasdelli, who is a state monitor in DLGS, a former municipal business administrator for 20 years, and an adjunct professor for Rutgers University and Fairleigh Dickenson University, conducted the training.   

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Atlantic City: Christina Bevilacqua
DCA: Tammori Petty
Gina Trish
Lisa Ryan
(609) 292-6055