On November 7, 2011, Petitioner filed a Motion for Summary Decision (Motion) pursuant to 930 CMR 1.01(6)(e)(2)./ For the reasons stated below, we grant Petitioner’s Motion and Order Respondent, Richard M. Bretschneider, to pay a civil penalty of $1,200.
The Order to Show Cause (OTSC) alleges that Respondent was the Nantucket County Sheriff and as such a state employee pursuant to G.L. c. 268A, § 1. The Order to Show Cause also alleges that Respondent was required to file a Statement of Financial Interests (SFI) for calendar year 2010 by May 2, 2011, in accordance with G.L. c. 268B and 930 CMR 2.00. The Respondent did not file by that date.
The OTSC further alleges that on May 6, 2011, the Commission sent Respondent a Formal Notice of Lateness (Formal Notice) by first class and certified mail. The Formal Notice advised Respondent that his SFI had not been filed and was, therefore, delinquent. The Formal Notice further advised Respondent that his failure to file his 2010 SFI within 10 days would result in civil penalties. Respondent received the Notice on or before May 17, 2011. Therefore, Respondent was required to file his SFI by May 27, 2011.
The Respondent subsequently filed his SFI on September 21, 2011, more than one-hundred and eleven (111) days after the expiration of the grace period following receipt of the Formal Notice.
The OTSC alleges that Respondent’s late filing violated G.L. c. 268B, § 5./ Petitioner requests that the Commission impose a civil penalty of $1,200./
The OTSC in this case was issued on October 13, 2011. Pursuant to 930 CMR 1.01(5)(c),/ Respondent’s Answer was due by November 3, 2011. Respondent failed to file an Answer by that date.
On November 22, 2011, the Presiding Officer issued an Order on Motion for Summary Decision / (Order on Motion) requiring Respondent to file an Answer by December 6, 2011 or to otherwise show cause why a summary decision should not be entered against him. The Order on Motion further provided that, if Respondent failed to file an Answer by that date, the Presiding Officer would request that the Commission consider at its December 16, 2011, meeting whether a summary decision should be entered against Respondent./
Pursuant to 930 CRM 1.01(6)(e)(2), the Commission may enter a summary decision in favor of the Petitioner when the record discloses the Respondent’s failure to file documents required by 930 CMR 1.00, to respond to notices or correspondence or to comply with orders of the Commission or Presiding Officer, or otherwise indicates a substantial failure to cooperate with the adjudicatory proceeding. The record in this case amply warrants the entry of a summary decision in favor of Petitioner.
Despite notice, the Respondent failed to file an Answer to the OTSC. In addition, he failed to file an Answer or to otherwise respond orally or in writing to show cause why summary decision should not be entered against him pursuant to the Order on Motion.
Respondent’s failure to defend or otherwise respond to the allegations constrains us to enter summary decision in favor of Petitioner, concluding that Respondent has violated G.L. c. 268B, § 5. Accordingly, pursuant to the authority granted to it by G.L. c. 268B, § 4(j), the State Ethics Commission hereby ORDERS Respondent, Richard M. Bretschneider, according to the penalty schedule, to pay a civil penalty of $1,200 for filing his SFI more than one-hundred and eleven (111) days after the expiration of the grace period following the Formal Notice of Lateness.