Ethics in Government Relations

Graduate School and University Center faculty and staff are public employees subject to regulations by the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE).

Staff members earning $101,379 or more annually or designated as policy-makers are subject to filing Annual Financial Disclosure Statements (FDS). These staff members are also required to receive an initial Comprehensive Ethics Training Course (CETC) and an Ethics Refresher training every three years.

All employees are subject to regulations concerning the receipt of honoraria and travel, gifts, outside activities, nepotism and political activities. Please see links below for comprehensive information about JCOPE regulations and frequently asked questions.

CETC training developed by the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) is mandatory for every Graduate School and University Center Faculty member earning $101,379 or more annually and staff designated as policy-makers who file an annual Financial Disclosure Statement (FDS). The CETC is a two-hour, live, instructor-led training that covers the Public Officers Law and other related ethics laws and regulations.

Select link below for all upcoming 2021-2022 trainings:

Enroll Now for upcoming Comprehensive Ethics Training Course (CETC) offered by JCOPE and at the Graduate Center.

Everyone who has taken the CETC is required by law to take an ethics refresher every three years thereafter. This means, for example, those FDS filers who first took the CETC in 2019 must take an ethics refresher in 2022.

Dates for the Comprehensive Ethics Training Course and Refresher Training offered at the Graduate Center will be posted on the website and announced by email. A training compliance report is issued to the JCOPE every year.

Select link below for all upcoming 2021-2022 trainings.

Enroll Now for upcoming Ethics Refresher Trainings offered by JCOPE or at the Graduate Center.

See also CUNY's Honoraria page.

In accordance with the regulations of the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE), all CUNY employees must report on the receipt of honoraria and travel reimbursement from non-CUNY sources each year.  You are obligated to report on any honoraria and travel reimbursements received between April 1st and March 31st of each year.  The Compliance and Diversity Office will contact you annually in March  and ask you to submit an annual report by May 1st. There is no need to complete a report if you did not receive any honoraria or travel reimbursement during the reporting period. Below is an excerpt from a memorandum from the CUNY Office of the General Counsel that provides details on the JCOPE requirements:

“All CUNY employees are required to comply with the law and regulations governing the receipt and reporting of honoraria, regardless of their designation as policymaker.”

JCOPE generally defines honorarium as “a speaking fee or compensation received from writing an article, or reimbursement for travel expense not related to official duties.”

JCOPE describes Financial Disclosure as follows: 

  • An annual Statement of Financial Disclosure (FDS) is a publicly available record containing financial and professional information about the FDS filer and his or her spouse.
  • The purpose of the FDS is to provide transparency in order to prevent conflicts of interest between a person’s professional duties and his or her private financial interests and affiliations.
  • The process of completing an FDS also assists an FDS filer in identifying and managing potential conflicts of interest.

FDS Online Filing System (FAQs)

FDS Filing Deadlines and Salary Threshold Information

FDS Year Filing Due Date* CSEA SG-24 Job Rate/
Filing Threshold
2020 May 17, 2020 (non-academic), 
November 15,  2021 (academic)

State employees or officials whose annual salaries surpass the threshold or who are designated policy-makers after the applicable filing due date must file within 30 days of the change in their salary or policy-maker designation. New State employees or officials who (1) have annual salaries above the threshold or are designated policy-makers, and (2) commence employment after the applicable filing due date must file within 30 days of hire.

JCOPE Reminder: Use of Agency Letterhead

For More Information

Contact Us

Geraldine Powell

HR Manager/HR Business Partner for Macaulay Honors College & Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism and Ethics Officer, Human Resources