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NYS Comptroller


The Academy for New York State's Local Officials

Protecting the Public’s Interest: A Tutorial on Local Government Ethics and Transparency in New York State

Module 1 - Conflict of Interest of Municipal Officers and Employees

Exceptions - Local Governments in “Rural Counties”

One exception pertains only to local governments in sparsely populated areas. Certain purchases or public works by a municipality located wholly or partially within a county with a population of 200,000 or less is permitted. This exception does not apply to contracts entered into by a county, regardless of the county’s population.

The exception only applies to purchase contracts and contracts for public works in which a member of the municipality’s governing board would otherwise have a prohibited interest. In order for this exception to apply, all of the following conditions must be met:

  • The member of the governing board is elected and serves without salary
  • The purchases, in the aggregate, are less than $5,000 in a fiscal year
  • The governing body has followed its procurement policies and procedures (for more information, please see General Municipal Law Section 104-b)
  • The procurement process indicates that the contract is the lowest dollar offer
  • The contract is approved by resolution of the board by affirmative vote of each member, except the interested member, who must abstain.

Let's listen to what Mark has to say about this exception and the real property ones discussed next.

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(Text for Video - More on Statutory Exceptions)

  Next: Exceptions Related to Property