July 28, 2011
Ms. Charlotte Randolph
P. O. Drawer 5548
Thibodaux, LA 70302
Re: Ethics Board Docket No. 2011-735
Dear Ms. Randolph:
The Louisiana Board of Ethics, at its July 15, 2011 meeting, considered your request for an advisory opinion as to whether the Lafourche Parish Coroner’s Office may employ, Melody Goldman, the wife of Mark Goldman, the Administrator and Chief Medicolegal Investigator for the Coroner’s Office. You state that Melody Goldman is a registered nurse and that she would be hired as an investigator for the Coroner’s Office and that she would be supervised by her husband.
The Board concluded, and instructed me to inform you that Section 1119 of the Code prohibits the employment of Mrs. Goldman in the investigative division of the Lafourche Parish Coroner’s Office since Mark Goldman is the Chief Investigator and is therefore an agency head. An “agency head” means the chief executive or administrative officer of an agency. “Agency” means a department, office, division, agency, commission, board, committee, or other organizational unit of government. As the Administrator and Chief Investigator, Mr. Goldman’s agency is the investigative division of the Coroner’s Office and his wife is prohibited from being employed in the investigative division.
This advisory opinion is based solely on the facts as set forth herein. Changes to the facts as presented may result in a different application of the provisions of the Code of Ethics. The Board issues no opinion as to past conduct or laws other than the Code of Governmental Ethics. If you have any questions, please contact me at (225) 219-5600 or (800) 842-6630.
LOUISIANA BOARD OF ETHICS
Alesia M. Ardoin
For the Board