House approves bill to require more financial disclosures
ST. PAUL - Minnesota representatives Friday approved a bill to require more public official financial disclosures.
The House voted 76-48 to require the state to audit whether public officials comply with campaign finance and disclosure laws, a process that now is optional. The Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board would have more powers under the bill.
“Minnesota’s public officials serve with great integrity, and our laws need to ensure that integrity continues into the future,” said bill author Rep. Laurie Halverson, D-Eagan.
Under current law, a public official who takes action on an issue that would substantially affect the official’s financial interests or those of an associated business must disclose the potential conflict. Halverson's bill adds the financial interest of an official's spouse to situations that require disclosure.
Public officials also would have to reveal more about their business interests.