Docket No. 511

In the Matter of Joanne Koval

December 15, 1994

Disposition Agreement




The State Ethics Commission ("Commission") and Joanne Koval
("Koval") enter into this Disposition Agreement ("Agreement")
pursuant to s.5 of the Commission's Enforcement Procedures. This
Agreement constitutes a consented to final order enforceable in the
Superior Court pursuant to G.L. c. 268B, s.4(j). On October 19,
1993, the Commission initiated, pursuant to G.L. c. 268B, s.4(a),
a preliminary inquiry into possible violations of the conflict of
interest law by Koval. The Commission concluded that inquiry, and
on September 13, 1994, found reasonable cause to believe that Koval
violated G.L. c. 268A, s.23(b)(3).

The Commission and Koval now agree to the following findings
of fact and conclusions of law:

1. From April 1991 until April 1994, Koval served on the
Board of Selectmen in the Town of Holbrook. As such, she was a
municipal employee within the meaning of G.L. c. 268A, s.1 of the
conflict of interest law.

2. The Board serves as the licensing authority in Holbrook.
As such, it regulates alcohol establishments through its power to
issue, suspend and terminate alcohol, amusement and pool table
licenses.

3. The Union Street Pub is an alcohol establishment in
Holbrook, located at 70-73 Union Street. In 1990, Union Street
Inc. took over the operation of the Pub and applied for the
transfer of the Pub's existing licenses. These licenses included
a liquor license, a pool table license and an amusement license for
video games. The Board of Selectmen approved the transfer of the
liquor and amusement licenses to Union Street Inc. Steve Faber
holds the controlling interest in Union Street Inc. The Board
declined to approve the transfer of the pool table license, and
conditioned their future approval of such a transfer on Faber's
performing extensive renovations to the Pub. At the time of the
transfer approvals, Koval was not a member of the Board of
Selectmen.

4. Union Street Inc.'s licenses are subject to annual
renewal by the Board of Selectmen.

5. On behalf of Union Street Inc., Faber appeared before the
Board of Selectmen in March 1991 to secure approval of the transfer
of the pool table license. At this time, Koval was a candidate for
a position on the Board of Selectmen in an upcoming election, and
opposed the issuance of the license. The Board of Selectmen voted
4 to 1 in favor of the license application.

6. Koval was elected to the Board of Selectmen in April
1991. On December 16, 1991, the Board of Selectmen renewed the
Union Street Pub's alcohol and amusement licenses. Koval was
present for the meeting and voted for the renewals.

7. In 1992, Koval became a candidate for the state senate
seat encompassing the Town of Holbrook. Her opponent in the
primary election was Michael Morrissey. In September 1992, before
the primary election, the Union Street Pub displayed two campaign
signs for Michael Morrissey on the exterior of its premises.

8. One evening in September, Koval entered the Pub and
introduced herself to the bartender as a candidate for state senate
and as a Holbrook selectwoman. Koval asked the bartender if she
had done anything to offend the bar to cause the owners to put up
the Morrissey signs. Koval stated she had been helpful as a
selectwoman to the Pub in its receipt of its

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pool table license. Koval then demanded that the bartender take
down the signs.

9. The bartender telephoned Faber and related Koval's
demand. Faber instructed the bartender to remove the signs. She
did so.

10. Faber feared retaliation from Koval if he did not remove
the signs.

11. General Laws c. 268A, s.23(b)(3) prohibits a municipal
employee from knowingly, or with reason to know, acting in a manner
which would cause a reasonable person, having knowledge of the
relevant circumstances, to conclude that any person can improperly
influence or unduly enjoy her favor in the performance of her
official duties.

12. By introducing herself as a selectwoman, and noting that
as such she had been helpful to the bar in the past, and by then
demanding that the Union Street Pub remove campaign signs promoting
her political opponent, Koval implicitly threatened a party she
regulated in her official capacity as a selectwoman. This conduct
would cause a reasonable person knowing these facts to conclude
that Koval could base her future vote on Union Street Pub license
renewals, not on the Pub's record of complying with alcohol laws
and regulations, but on its level of campaign support. Such votes
would be based on improper influence and undue favor. Therefore,
Koval violated G.L. c. 268A, s.23(b)(3).

In view of the foregoing violation of G.L. c. 268A, the
Commission has determined that the public interest would be served
by the disposition of this matter without further enforcement
proceedings, on the basis of the following terms and conditions
agreed to by Koval:

(1) that Koval pay to the Commission the sum of two
hundred and fifty dollars ($250.00) as a civil penalty
for the violations of G.L. c. 268A, s.23(b)(3);

(2) that Koval waive all rights to contest the findings
of fact, conclusions of law and terms and conditions
contained in this Agreement in this or any other related
administrative or judicial proceeding to which the
Commission is or may be a party.

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