August 17, 2011

Mayor Emanuel Announces Release of Ethics Training and Financial Disclosure Performance Data

Board of Ethics Data Now Available Online at City’s Data Portal

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Mayor Rahm Emanuel today announced the release of data from the Board of Ethics that tracks ethics training and financial disclosure compliance for all city employees and lobbyists as part of the Administration’s ongoing efforts to increase transparency and accountability across city government. Mayor Emanuel made the announcement while participating in an online town hall hosted by the Better Government Association.

“The people of Chicago deserve an open, accessible, and accountable city government,” said Mayor Emanuel. “This unprecedented transparency is an important step towards ensuring that Chicago’s city government is serving the taxpayers.”

The performance data released today is part of Mayor Emanuel’s ongoing commitment to enhancing transparency and decreasing inefficiencies throughout city government.

The data, which can now be viewed in a new, easy-to-use, comprehensive and searchable format, includes:

  • Statements of Financial Interest Disclosures for city employees;
  • Lobbyists Who Have Completed Ethics Trainings;
  • City Employees Who Have Completed Mandatory Annual Ethics Trainings; and
  • Lobbyists' Registrations

Chicago is one of a few cities to require mandatory, online ethics trainings for its lobbyists and employees and to publicly track if they are meeting the requirement.

Additionally, 92% of city lobbyists have completed their mandatory ethics trainings showing the Board of Ethics is on target to meet its goal of 100% compliance by the end of this year.

According to the Board of Ethics’ performance metrics being released today, 99.2% of city employees required to file financial disclosure statements have already done so. Since the passage of Mayor Emanuel’s Ethics Reform ordinance in July, 1,900 city employees and officials have completed their required ethics trainings bringing the total number to over 7,200. The data shows that the Board of Ethics is on target to meet its goal of 100% completion by the end of the year.

Since taking office in May, Mayor Emanuel has released of over 200 data sets including employee salaries, city contracts and service request efficiencies. The Mayor’s Office is constantly evaluating city departments and has posted performance trackers online so the public can be a part of that process. To view this data, or for more information, visit or

The Board of Ethics tracking and performance information released today is detailed below.

Statements of Financial Interests Disclosures:

The Governmental Ethics Ordinance requires City employees and certain City officials to file a Statement of Financial Interests. A Statement of Financial Interests is a document that discloses the private business association and other financial interests of an individual and their immediate family and must be filed annually. The target is to achieve 100% compliance by the end of the year and 99% of those required to file have already done so.

Mandatory Annual City Employee Ethics Trainings:

The Governmental Ethics Ordinance requires all aldermen and full-time City employees to complete an annual ethics training program designed by the Board of Ethics. The Board of Ethics is on target is to achieve 100% compliance by the end of this year, and for the first time, that data is available in an open, searchable format. 

Lobbyists Completing Ethics Training:

The City of Chicago requires all lobbyists to complete, each year, an ethics training program designed by the Board of Ethics. The target is to achieve 100% compliance by July 1st of each year.

Lobbyists' Registrations and Activity Reports:

The Governmental Ethics Ordinance requires all lobbyists to register annually with the Board of Ethics and file reports twice a year about their lobbying activities. Starting on May 1, 2012, lobbyists will be required to file four times a year. The Board has received approximately 600 registrations and 1200 activity reports per in a calendar year. This data is being released so that the public can access these records to determine who is lobbying whom and for what reason; on behalf of what client(s); what the lobbyists are compensated; and what expenditures and gifts are given. Starting in May 2012, lobbyists' campaign contributions will also be shown.