Washington, D.C. City Council member Brianne K. Nadeau on April 2 proposed a bill that would ban almost all outside employment for council members, according to a report in AP.
Six more council members are also co-sponsoring the bill dubbed “One Job at a Time” that will require approval before a vote, as it amends the Home Rule Charter.
The proposal comes at a time when Councilman Jack Evans is being investigated for misusing his position to solicit business from area lobbyists, while conducting his side job as a lawyer and consultant. Evans, according to recent allegations, pitched himself to lobbyists, saying that they can employ him given his influence as chair of the area transit board and his standing as the city’s longest-serving lawmaker.
Evans is also being investigated over a legislation he promoted in 2016 that could have benefited a digital sign company. The D.C. Council on Tuesday also voted to remove Evans from some of his responsibilities.
“There are a lot of things we need to do to restore the public trust, and this is one of them. Some people might choose to go on to a different field and not stay as long if they need income. Public service is a sacrifice in many ways,” Nadeau told the Washington Post.
Evans and council member Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3) are the only ones to have reported significant outside income among the 13 members of the council. Despite being unaffected by the bill, which excludes teachers and instructors, Cheh is against a possible ban on outside employment.
“If the complete focus is on the council, it sometimes distorts our understanding of how ordinary people live their lives. There is still some value to the citizen legislator,” said Cheh, regarding the bill.
Six council members who have signed on to Nadeau’s bill as co-sponsors are David Grosso (I-At Large), Robert C. White Jr. (D-At Large), Charles Allen (D-Ward 6), Anita Bonds (D-At Large), Brandon T. Todd (D-Ward 4), and Elissa Silverman (I-At Large).