Two New Ethics Commission Members @ 18 Feb 2011

At their January 24 meeting, the County Commissioners appointed two new members to the Ethics Commission, Jody Schulz and Richard Smith.  Mr. Smith will serve as an alternate.  He replaces Neal Jackson, who resigned last spring to run for County Commissioner.  Mr. Schulz replaces Ben Tilghman, who filled out the term of a former Ethics Commissioner and was not appointed for a full term in his own right.

It was interesting to learn that at the County Commissioners’ most recent meeting, Commissioner Simmons took issue with the meeting minutes which described the selection of the two new Ethics Commission members as unanimous.  Commissioner Simmons said he was very opposed to their selection.  Commissioner Dunmyer joined Mr. Simmons in correcting the minutes, noting that he, too, had opposed their selection.  The vote was 3-2.

Mr. Schulz and Mr. Smith will have big shoes to fill.  Mr. Tilghman and Mr. Jackson conscientiously familiarized themselves with all provisions of the Ethics Law and took special concern to consider all sides of an issue and apply the Ethics Law fairly. They were active, contributing members of the Commission, volunteering whenever the Chairman asked for help with drafting and distributing informational material and playing a major role in producing the Commission’s Annual Report.  Ethics Matters thanks Mr. Tilghman and Mr. Jackson for their service on the Commission.  

Ethics Matters welcomes new members Jody Schulz and Dick Smith.  Mr. Schulz is President of the Kent Island Fire Department, and Fisherman’s Inn and the Crab Deck are family businesses.  He is a developer with a number of projects throughout the County.  Mr. Smith owns his own real estate company and numerous parcels of land in Queen Anne’s County.  An unsuccessful three-time candidate for County Commissioner, Mr. Smith served for two years as County Commissioner when he was appointed to complete “Nemo” Niedomanski’s term.  Mr. Smith is active in the Farm Bureau, has served on a number of County Boards and Commissions, and has chaired the Kent Narrows Development Foundation.  In addition to the Ethics Commission, he was recently appointed to the Task Force on Government Sustainability, a group charged with making recommendations on restructuring County government to ensure sustainability.

Ethics Matters appreciates Mr. Schulz’s and Mr. Smith’s willingness to serve the citizens of the County as they perform their new duty of carrying out the purpose of the County’s Ethics Law: to assure “that the financial interests of holders of and candidates for public office and public officials and employees present no conflict with the public interest.”


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