The State Ethics Commission approved a Disposition Agreement (\u201cAgreement\u201d) in which Philip Poley (\u201cPoley\u201d), the former Chief Operating Officer of MassHealth, a department within the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (\u201cEOHHS\u201d), admitted to repeatedly violating G.L. c. 268A, the conflict of interest law.\u00a0 Pursuant to the Agreement, Poley, a former Brookline resident, paid a $25,000 civil penalty.\u00a0\n\nPoley admitted that he violated the law by contacting managers at Accenture, an international technology and business consulting firm, to discuss and negotiate prospective employment with Accenture, while also working on a MassHealth/UMass project on which Poley solicited Accenture\u2019s involvement.\u00a0 Poley also admitted to violating the conflict of interest law after leaving his state position by working as an Accenture employee on matters relating to the MassHealth/UMass project.\u00a0\n\n\u201cSimply put, public employees cannot use their public positions and responsibilities to leverage private employment opportunities,\u201d said Executive Director Karen L. Nober.\u00a0 \u201cContacts with potential employers must be disclosed before public employees may take any action involving those entities, and in certain circumstances, they must abstain entirely from matters affecting a potential employer.\u201d\n\nAccording to the Agreement, in August 2009, Poley began working on a proposal to develop a MassHealth Analytics Unit (\u201cAnalytics Unit\u201d) at UMass Medical School (\u201cUMass\u201d) to analyze and manage Medicaid data.\u00a0 In October 2009, Poley sent the proposal to a managing director at Accenture, who shared it with several colleagues. In November 2009, Poley met with Accenture representatives to discuss the Analytics Unit.\u00a0 An Accenture manager who had attended the meeting emailed his colleagues to tell them that MassHealth wanted to outsource the creation of the Analytics Unit to UMass, who would then \u201ccontract directly with Accenture\u201d on how to create it.\u00a0 Over the course of several months, Poley had periodic contact with Accenture executives regarding the project and was actively involved in its development.\u00a0 In July 2010, UMass sent a Request for Proposals (\u201cRFP\u201d) to Accenture for management consultant services for the project.\u00a0 No other companies were contacted or invited to respond. Accenture submitted a proposal in July, and in November 2010, Accenture and MassHealth finalized a $420,000 consulting contract for the project.\u00a0\n\nAround the same time Poley contacted Accenture regarding the Analytics Unit in the fall of 2009, he began discussions with Accenture executives about his career.\u00a0 In early 2009, he asked a MassHealth colleague who previously worked for Accenture to contact a company executive on his behalf and say that Poley wanted to have a \u201cconfidential conversation\u2026 to explore career alternatives.\u201d\u00a0 As the Analytics Unit project\u2019s development progressed \u2013 leading up to a sole source contract between UMass and Accenture \u2013 Poley eventually began negotiating with Accenture regarding a potential job title and compensation.\u00a0 In early June 2010, Poley was told that he had successfully cleared Accenture\u2019s internal conflict of interest review and that he would begin the interview process, which took place in early July.\u00a0 \u00a0\n\nOn June 29, 2010, Poley filed a disclosure with the EOHHS Undersecretary and with the State Ethics Commission regarding his employment discussions with Accenture.\u00a0 Poley\u2019s appointing authority promptly removed him from any further participation in the Analytics Unit project. Poley left MassHealth on August 12, 2010, and began work for Accenture as a senior manager on September 16, 2010, earning a base annual salary of $185,000, with the potential to earn additional performance bonuses.\u00a0\u00a0 On several occasions after joining Accenture, Poley provided advice and guidance to his fellow Accenture employees regarding the contract with UMass.\n\nSection 23(b)(3) of the conflict of interest law prohibits a state employee from acting in a manner which would cause a reasonable person, knowing all the facts, to conclude that he may be biased in the performance of his official duties.\u00a0 According to the Agreement, from November 2009 to June 29, 2010, Poley took official actions in his capacity as the MassHealth COO in matters involving Accenture, while he was actively seeking future employment with the company.\u00a0 Poley did not file a timely disclosure prior to taking these actions, and, therefore, repeatedly violated Section 23(b)(3).\n\nSection 6 of the conflict of interest law prohibits a state employee from participating in a particular matter in which, to his knowledge, an organization with which he is negotiating or has any arrangement concerning prospective employment has a financial interest.\u00a0 After Poley began employment negotiations with Accenture, which occurred at least as early as April 2010, he participated in meetings and decisions related to the proposed Analytics Unit project, a particular matter in which Accenture had a financial interest.\u00a0 By doing so, Poley repeatedly violated section 6.\n\nSection 5(a) of the conflict of interest law prohibits a former state employee from receiving compensation from anyone other than the Commonwealth or a state agency in connection with any particular matter in which the Commonwealth or a state agency is a party or has a direct and substantial interest, and in which he participated as a state employee.\u00a0 The Agreement states that Poley, as an Accenture employee, repeatedly violated section 5(a) by receiving compensation from Accenture in connection with the Analytics Unit project, a particular matter in which he participated as a MassHealth employee.