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A 'more complete' ethics policy at COD
By Jake Griffin | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 6/23/2009 12:00 AM

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One of the first things the new College of DuPage board of trustees did after the April election was rescind a series of controversial policies, including the ethics policy that governs political activity of the board and college employees.

Monday, the board returned to the ethics policy, giving preliminary approval to an ordinance almost exactly like the one it rejected nearly two months ago.

College officials said the only major difference between the proposed ethics policy and the former policy is the inclusion of the state ethics rules the college policies are based upon.

"It's more complete," said COD President Robert Breuder.

The policy would essentially prohibit trustees and employees from campaigning on campus or using college resources for political campaigns.

The college is currently looking into whether the faculty association misused its rented office space to promote activities of its political action committee. The allegations were made last month by former COD Trustee Kory Atkinson, who left the COD board to run for a seat on the Roselle village board.

The board's attorney is currently leading the investigation. Board Chairwoman Kathy Wessel said an update of the investigation is expected at the board's July meeting.

The faculty association's Friends for Education PAC spent more than $40,000 on the campaigns of four trustee candidates they endorsed. Three of the group's choices were elected. Friends for Education Executive Director Tom Tipton said the PAC has retained a lawyer to handle the investigation.

In addition to detailing prohibited political activity, the ethics policy also outlines gift bans and penalties for violating the ethics policy. The board is expected to vote on the policy at its July meeting.