A report on the investigation into the ethics scandal implicating D.C. Councilmember Jack Evans was made public Tuesday, prompting more reactions against the politician, who is being asked to step down by a majority of councilmembers.
Behind the 97-page report is the law firm O’Melveny & Myers, who discovered at least 11 violations of the District code and ethics over the past five years.
Among the findings are “failing to disclose the names of any of his consulting clients in his public financial disclosure statements”, “failing to disclose the identity of most of his consulting clients even to his own staff and “participating in his official capacity in ‘particular matters’ in which his outside employers or his personal clients had direct financial interests, failing to recognize the inherent conflict that should have been disclosed and addressed.”
He also reportedly failed to recuse himself from matters involving financial interests of a prospective employer multiple times and occasionally (but not substantially) used his Council staff and office email account to support his outside employment.
Evans was allegedly paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to take official action as a councilmember to benefit clients of his private consulting business or law firm.
“He received over $400,000 for doing little or no documented work for consulting clients most, if not all, of whom were also “prohibited sources” under the Code of Official Conduct,” according to the report.
Councilmembers in the District have long been allowed to have second jobs, as well as in many other states around the nation, the report explained. “But outside employment, particularly where it may relate to the business of the Council or the executive branch that the Council funds and oversees, brings with it increased risks of potential conflicts of interest and other ethical issues. Adherence to an effective ethics program is a critical element in mitigating those risks.”
At-large Councilmember David Grosso was the first sitting councilmember to call on Evans to resign. In the wake of the report’s release, Grosso was joined by Ward 6 Councilmember Charles Allen, At-large Councilmember Elissa Silverman, At-large Councilmember Robert White, Ward 1 Councilmember Brianne Nadeau and others.
Back in June, Evans had his Georgetown home raided by the FBI, as part of an ongoing federal investigation. He resigned from his post as the chair of the Metro board the day the ethics probe became public.