|Organization:||State Ethics Commission|
Settlement In the Matter of Frank Emilio
Table of Contents
This Disposition Agreement ("Agreement") is entered into between the State Ethics Commission ("Commission") and former Representative Frank A. Emilio ("Rep. Emilio") 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 June 22, 1993, the Commission initiated, pursuant to G.L. c. 268B, s.4(a), a preliminary inquiry into allegations that Rep. Emilio had violated the conflict of interest law, G.L. c. 268A. The Commission has concluded its inquiry and, on January 25, 1994, voted to find reasonable cause to believe that Rep. Emilio violated G.L. c. 268A, s.3.
The Commission and Rep. Emilio now agree to the following facts and conclusions of law:
1. Rep. Emilio served in the state legislature for five terms from January 1981 to January 1991.
2. During his ten years in the House of Representatives, Rep. Emilio served on the Joint Committee on Insurance. The majority of bills dealing with the regulation of the insurance industry are assigned to the Joint Committee on Insurance. As an Insurance Committee member, Rep. Emilio participated in the hearings and committee votes on hundreds of insurance bills. He also voted on such bills if they reached the House floor.
3. Rep. Emilio sponsored or co-sponsored dozens of bills affecting the insurance industry.
4. During the period relevant here, F. William Sawyer ("Sawyer") was the senior John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance Co., Inc. ("Hancock") lobbyist responsible for Massachusetts legislation. He was also a registered legislative agent (for Hancock) in Massachusetts. Hancock, a Massachusetts corporation, is the nation's sixth largest life insurer doing business in all 50 states. It offers an array of
life, health and investment products. As a Massachusetts domiciliary, it is more subject to Massachusetts laws and regulations than to those of any other state.
5. During the period relevant here, William Carroll ("Carroll") was a registered legislative agent for the Life Insurance Association of Massachusetts ("LIAM"). LIAM is a trade association of life insurance companies doing business in Massachusetts.
6. During the period relevant here, Edward Dever ("Dever") was a Massachusetts registered legislative agent for the Massachusetts Life Insurance Company.
7. During the period relevant here, Alvaro Sousa ("Sousa") was a Massachusetts registered legislative agent for the New England Mutual Life Insurance Company.
8. During the period relevant here, John Spillane ("Spillane") was a Massachusetts registered legislative agent for the Paul Revere Insurance Companies.
9. During the period relevant here, James T. Harrington ("Harrington") served as the vice-president for the American Insurance Association, a nationwide trade association of 250 property and casualty insurance companies. Harrington was also a Massachusetts registered legislative agent.
10. Rep. Emilio knew Sawyer, Carroll, Sousa, Dever, Spillane, Harrington and Joseph McEvoy ("McEvoy") were lobbyists representing the insurance industry. On occasion, these individuals testified before the Insurance Committee and lobbied Rep. Emilio regarding various pieces of legislation. Additionally, Rep. Emilio sponsored a number of bills at the request of Sawyer, Spillane and McEvoy.
11. Lobbyists are employed to promote, oppose or influence legislation.
12. One way in which some lobbyists further their legislative goals is to develop or maintain goodwill and personal relationships with legislators to ensure effective access to them. Some lobbyists entertain legislators through meals, drinks, golf and tickets to sporting events in order to develop the desired goodwill and personal relationships.
13. During August 20 - 23, 1988, Rep. Emilio and his family attended a Council of State Governments conference in Burlington, Vermont. On Sunday August 21, 1988, Rep. Emilio played golf with Sawyer. Sawyer paid $80 for their golf and entertainment expenses. On Monday evening, August 22, 1988, Sawyer hosted Rep. Emilio and his wife and a Vermont legislator and his guest to a dinner at the Ice House restaurant. The cost of the dinner was $142.46. Rep. Emilio's pro rata share of the golf and dinner expenses was approximately $96.98.
14. From November 28 to November 30, 1988, Rep. Emilio and his spouse attended a Council of Insurance Legislators conference in Atlanta, Georgia. On the evening of November 29, 1988, Sawyer hosted Rep. Emilio and his wife and four other legislators and their guests to a dinner at Pano & Paul's Restaurant. The cost of the dinner was $997.97. The Emilios' pro rata share of the cost of the dinner was approximately $181.41.
15. Hancock maintains a corporate box at the Boston Red Sox 600 Club. Sawyer invited Rep. Emilio to be his guest in the 600 Club for three Red Sox games on June 13, 1989, April 9, 1990 and August 21, 1990. The cost of the box to Hancock was $75 a game, per seat. At the ball games, Sawyer provided Rep. Emilio with drinks and meals. Rep. Emilio's share of the dinner and drink bills was $3.93 for the June 13, 1989 game, $25.71 for the April 9, 1990 game, and $29.04 for the August 21, 1990 game. The total value of the tickets, drinks and meals provided to Rep. Emilio at the ball games was $283.68.
16. During November 24-28, 1990, Rep. Emilio and his spouse were in Walt Disney World, Florida. Rep. Emilio had registered to attend an educational conference sponsored by the Conference of Insurance Legislators. On the evening of November 24, 1990, Rep. Emilio and his spouse, along with approximately eighteen other lobbyists, legislators (from a number of states) and their guests ate at the Stouffer Hotel in Orlando. The cost of the meal was $2,243.97. The Emilios' pro rata share of the dinner expenses was approximately $117.00. Carroll hosted the dinner, and LIAM paid for the meals. On that same day, Sawyer entertained Rep. Emilio and two other legislators at the Grand Cypress Golf Club. The cost of this golf and entertainment was $468.89. Rep. Emilio's pro rata share of the golf and entertainment was $117.12.
17. On November 28, 1990, Sawyer provided Epcot Center tickets and lunch to the Emilios and two other legislators and their spouses. According to Sawyer's expense records, the combined cost of the tickets and lunches was $246.06. The Emilios' pro rata share of the tickets and lunches was approximately $61.00. On the evening of November 28, 1990, Rep. and Mrs. Emilio, along with approximately ten other
legislators, lobbyists and their guests ate at the Buena Vista Palace at Walt Disney World. The cost of the dinner was $342.48. The Emilios' pro rata share of the dinner was approximately $63.00. Sawyer paid for the dinner.
18. On January 8, 1991, Sawyer, Dever, Carroll, Spillane, Harrington and Sousa hosted a private testimonial dinner for Rep. Emilio at Joe Tecce's Restaurant in Boston. Several days earlier, Rep. Emilio had left the legislature. According to an internal Hancock memorandum written by Sawyer, Rep. Emilio's departure from the State House was "notable" as he had been "very helpful to John Hancock." The lobbyists gave Rep. Emilio a $404.25 set of golf clubs. Rep. Emilio's share of the dinner expenses was $60.11. Thus, Rep. Emilio received a total of $464.36 in gratuities.
19. Section 3(b) of G.L. c. 268A prohibits any present or former state employee from directly or indirectly receiving anything of substantial value for or because of any official act or act within his official responsibility performed or to be performed by him.
20. Massachusetts legislators are state employees.
21. Anything worth $50 or more is of substantial value for s.3 purposes.
22. By accepting a total of $1,384.00 in meals, golf, gifts and sports tickets from lobbyists all while Rep. Emilio was in a position, or had recently been in a position, to take official actions which could benefit, and in some instances did benefit, those lobbyists, Rep. Emilio received items of substantial value for or because of official acts or acts within his official responsibility performed or to be performed by him. In doing so, he violated G.L. c. 268A, s.3(b).
23. The Commission is aware of no evidence that the gratuities or gifts referenced above were provided to Rep. Emilio with the intent to influence any specific act by him as a legislator or any particular act within his official responsibility. The Commission is also aware of no evidence that Rep. Emilio took any official action concerning any proposed legislation which would affect any of the registered Massachusetts lobbyists in return for the gratuities or gifts. However, even though the gratuities were only intended to foster official goodwill and access, they were still impermissible.
24. Rep. Emilio has fully cooperated with the Commission throughout its investigation.
In view of the foregoing violations of G.L. c. 268A by Rep. Emilio, 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 Rep. Emilio:
(1) that Rep. Emilio pay to the Commission the sum of four thousand, two hundred dollars ($4,200.00) as a civil fine for violating G.L. c. 268A, s.3(b); and
(2) that Rep. Emilio waive all rights to contest the findings of fact, conclusions of law and terms and conditions contained in this Agreement and in any related administrative or judicial proceedings to which the Commission is or may be a party.