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Who does the Act cover?

The Ethics Act applies to public officials and public employees.  Candidates and nominees for public office or employment are also subject to certain provisions of the Ethics Act.

All persons are subject to Section 1103(b) of the Ethics Act, which imposes certain prohibitions against seeking improper influence.

Public Official

Any person elected by the public or elected or appointed by a governmental body, or an appointed official in the executive, legislative, or judicial branch of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania or any political subdivision thereof, provided that it shall not include members of advisory boards that have no authority to expend public funds other than reimbursement for personal expense, or to otherwise exercise the power of the state or any political subdivision thereof.

Public Employee 

Any individual employed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania or a political subdivision who is responsible for taking or recommending official action of a non-ministerial nature with regard to:  (1) contracting or procurement; (2) administering or monitoring grants or subsidies; (3) planning or zoning; (4) inspecting, licensing, regulating, or auditing any person; or (5) any other activity where the official action has an economic impact of greater than a de minimis nature on the interests of any person.

 The term "public employee" shall not include individuals who are employed by the state or any political subdivision thereof in teaching as distinguished from administrative duties.


Any individual who seeks nomination or election to public office by vote of the electorate, other than a judge of elections, inspector of elections, or official of a political party, whether or not such individual is nominated or elected.  An individual shall be deemed to be seeking nomination or election to such office if he has:  (1) received a contribution or made an expenditure or given his consent for any other person or committee to do so for the purpose of influencing his nomination or election to such office, whether or not the individual has announced the specific office for which he will seek nomination or election at the time the contribution is received or the expenditure is made; or (2) taken the action necessary under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to qualify himself for nomination or election to such office.

The term shall include individuals nominated or elected as write-in candidates unless they resign such nomination or elected office within 30 days of having been nominated or elected. 


Any person whose name has been submitted to a public official or governmental body vested with the power to finally confirm or reject proposed appointments to public office or employment.