Title V of the Ethics in Government Act proscribes certain activities by certain former Federal employees (18 U.S.C. 207 ). In summary, as applied to former Commission employees, the restrictions and basic procedures are as follows:
(a) Restrictions.(1) No former Commission employee may represent in any formal or informal appearance or make any oral or written communication with intent to influence a U.S. Government agency in a particular matter involving a specific party or parties in which the employee participated personally and substantially while with the Commission.
(2) No former Commission employee may, within two years of terminating Commission employment, act as a representative in the manner described in paragraph (a)(1) of this section, as to a particular matter which was actually pending under the employee's official responsibility within one year prior to termination of the employment.
(3) Former senior Commission employees (defined as Commissioners and members of the Senior Executive Service as designated by the Office of Government Ethics under 18 U.S.C. 207(d)(1)) may not, for two years after terminating Commission employment, assist in representing a person by personal presence at an appearance before the Government on a matter in which the former employee had participated personally and substantially while at the Commission.
(4) Former senior Commission employees, as defined in paragraph (a)(3) of this section, are barred for one year from representing parties before the Commission or communicating with intent to influence the Commission, regardless of prior involvement in the particular proceeding.
(b) Prior consent for appearance.(1) Prior to making any appearance, representation or communication described in paragraph (a) of this section, and, in addition to other requirements of this subpart, every former employee must apply for and obtain prior written consent of the Commission for each proceeding or matter in which such appearance, representation, or communication is contemplated. Such consent will be given only if the Commission determines that the appearance, representation or communication is not prohibited by the Act, this section or other provisions of this chapter.
(2) To facilitate the Commission's determination that the intended activity is not prohibited, applications for written consent shall:
(i) Be directed to the Commission, state the former connection of the applicant with the Commission and date of termination of employment, and identify the matter in which the applicant desires to appear; and
(ii) Be accompanied by an affidavit to the effect that the matter for which consent is requested is not a matter in which the applicant participated personally and substantially while at the Commission and, as made applicable by paragraph (a) of this section, that the particular matter as to which consent is requested was not pending under the applicant's official responsibility within one year prior to termination of employment and that the matter was not one in which the former employee had participated personally and substantially while at the Commission. The statements contained in the affidavit shall not be sufficient if disproved by an examination of the files and records of the case.
(3) The applicant shall be promptly advised as to his or her privilege to appear, represent or communicate in the particular matter, and the application, affidavit and consent, or refusal to consent, shall be filed by the Commission in its records relative thereto.
(c) Basic procedures for possible violations. The following basic guidelines for administrative enforcement restrictions on post employment activities are designed to expedite consultation with the Director of the Office of Government Ethics as required pursuant to section 207(j) of Title 18, United States Code.
(1) Delegation. The Chairman may delegate his or her authority under this subpart.
(2) Initiation of administrative disciplinary hearing.(i) On receipt of information regarding a possible violation of 18 U.S.C. 207, and after determining that such information appears substantiated, the Chairman shall expeditiously provide such information, along with any comments or agency regulations, to the Director of the Office of Government Ethics and to the Criminal Division, Department of Justice. The Commission shall coordinate any investigation or administrative action with the Department of Justice to avoid prejudicing criminal proceedings, unless the Department of Justice communicates to the Commission that it does not intend to initiate criminal prosecution.
(ii) Whenever the Commission has determined after appropriate review that there is reasonable cause to believe that a former Commission employee has violated any provision of paragraph (a) of this section or 18 U.S.C. 207 (a), (b), or (c), it may initiate an administrative disciplinary proceeding by providing the former Commission employee with notice as defined in paragraph (c)(3) of this section.
(3) Adequate notice.(i) The Commission shall provide a former Commission employee with adequate notice of an intention to institute a proceeding and an opportunity for a hearing.
(ii) Notice to the former Commission employee must include:
(A) A statement of allegations (and the basis thereof) sufficiently detailed to enable the former Commission employee to prepare an adequate defense;
(B) Notification of the right to a hearing; and
(C) An explanation of the method by which a hearing may be requested.
(4) Presiding official.(i) The presiding official at a proceeding under this section shall be an individual to whom the Chairman has delegated authority to make an initial decision (hereinafter referred to as “examiner”).
(ii) The examiner must be a Commissioner (other than the Chairman), an administrative law judge, or an attorney employed by the Commission and shall be provided with appropriate administrative and secretarial support by the Commission.
(iii) The presiding official shall be impartial. No individual who has participated in any manner in the decision to initiate a proceeding may serve as an examiner in that proceeding.
(5) Time, date and place.(i) The hearing shall be conducted at a reasonable time, date and place.
(ii) In setting a hearing date, the presiding official shall give due regard to the former Commission employee's need for:
(A) Adequate time to prepare a defense properly, and
(B) An expeditious resolution of allegations that may be damaging to his or her reputation.
(6) Hearing rights. A hearing shall include, at a minimum, the following rights:
(i) To represent oneself or to be represented by counsel;
(ii) To introduce and examine witnesses and to submit physical evidence;
(iii) To confront and cross-examine adverse witnesses;
(iv) To receive a transcript or recording of the proceedings, on request.
(7) Burden of proof. In any hearing under this subpart, the Commission has the burden of proof and must establish substantial evidence of a violation.
(8) Initial decision.(i) The examiner shall make a determination on matters exclusively of record in a proceeding, and shall set forth in the decision all findings of fact and conclusions of law relevant to the matters at issue.
(ii) Within a reasonable period of the date of an initial decision, as set by the Commission, either party may appeal the decision solely on the record to the Chairman. The Chairman shall base his or her decision solely on the record of the proceedings or those portions thereof cited by the parties to limit the issues.
(iii) If the Chairman modifies or reverses the initial decision, he or she shall specify such findings of facts and conclusions of law as are different from those of the examiner.
(9) Administrative sanctions. The Chairman may take appropriate action in the case of any individual who was found in violation of 18 U.S.C. 207 (a), (b), or (c) or the provisions of paragraph (a) of this section after a final administrative decision or who failed to request a hearing after receiving adequate notice by:
(i) Prohibiting the individual from making, on behalf of any other person except the United States, any formal or informal appearance before, or, with the intent to influence, any oral or written communication to, the Commission on any matter of business for a period not to exceed five (5) years, which may be accomplished by directing Commission employees to refuse to participate in any such appearance or to accept any such communication; or
(ii) Taking other appropriate disciplinary action.
(10) Judicial review. Any person found to have participated in a violation of 18 U.S.C. 207 (a), (b), or (c) or the provisions of paragraph (a) of this section may seek judicial review of the administrative determination.
(11) Consultation and review. The procedures for administrative enforcement set forth in paragraphs (a), (b), and (c) of this section have been reviewed by the Director of the Office of Government Ethics.
(d) Partners or associates.(1) In any case in which a former member, officer, or employee of the Commission is prohibited under this section from practicing, appearing, or representing anyone before the Commission in a particular Commission matter, any partner or legal or business associate of such former member, officer, or employee shall be prohibited from (i) utilizing the services of the disqualified former member, officer, or employee in connection with the matter, (ii) discussing the matter in any manner with the disqualified former member, officer, or employee, and (iii) sharing directly or indirectly with the disqualified former member, officer, or employee in any fees or revenues received for services rendered in connection with such matter.
(2) The Commission may require any practitioner or applicant to become a practitioner to file an affidavit to the effect that the practitioner or applicant will not: (i) Utilize the service of, (ii) discuss the particular matter with, or (iii) share directly or indirectly any fees or revenues received for services provided in the particular matter, with a partner, fellow employee, or legal or business associate who is a former member, officer or employee of the Commission and who is either permanently or temporarily precluded from practicing, appearing or representing anyone before the Commission in connection with the particular matter; and that the applicant's employment is not prohibited by any law of the United States or by the regulations of the Commission. [Rule 32.]