For Immediate Release - May 31, 2011

Ethics Commission Approves Order of Dismissal in the Robert Fortes Adjudicatory Proceeding

Fortes Failed to Timely File His 2009 Statement of Financial Interest

The State Ethics Commission ("Commission") issued an Allowance of Joint Motion and Order of Dismissal ("Order") dismissing the adjudicatory proceeding involving former Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Assistant General Manager for Strategic Planning and Performance ("Assistant GM") Robert Fortes ("Fortes"), for allegedly violating G.L. c. 268B, the financial disclosure law. The adjudicatory proceeding was initiated on January 20, 2011 by the Commission's Enforcement Division issuing an Order to Show Cause in which it charged Fortes with violating the financial disclosure law by failing to timely file his 2009 Statement of Financial Interests ("SFI").

The Financial Disclosure Law requires elected state and county officials, candidates for state office and "designated major policy makers" at the state and county level to annually disclose their financial interests and private business associations by filing an SFI with the Commission each year. Under the penalty schedule in effect for the filing of Calendar Year 2009 SFIs, the Commission can impose civil penalties of up to $1,000 for first-time late filers.

As an MBTA Assistant GM, Fortes was a "designated major policy maker", and was required to file his 2009 SFI by May 17, 2010. Fortes did not file his 2009 SFI until September 14, 2010.

According to the Order, the matter was dismissed after Fortes produced evidence detailing personal circumstances that impaired his ability to timely file his SFI. During the relevant time period, Fortes was a primary caregiver for a terminally ill relative. The Commission concluded that the interests of the parties and the Commission would be served by dismissing the adjudicatory proceeding.

Allowance of Joint Motion And Order of Dismissal