It's the season for ethics complaints. Jennifer Beck has filed one against Ellen Karcher. And Karcher has one pending on Beck. That's typical for an election year; soon candidates will begin sending letters to the U.S. Attorney as well. They will see a federal probe of what they say they view as criminal actions — but really, they're just hoping for some press coverage.
Gannett New Jersey pointed out this week how rarely the New Jersey State Ethics Commission actually takes any action — especially considering the huge number of public officials who have been convicted of corrupt practices. Two State Senators are currently under indictment, and two Assemblymen resigned last month following their arrests on bribery charges. During the current legislative session, one Assemblywoman resigned after being arrested on shoplifting charges.
The longtime Executive Director, Rita Strmensky, has recently retired; she has been replaced by Kathleen Wiechnik, a former prosecutor. Perhaps it will be appropriate at some point to hold the ethics commission — and its staff — accountable for their lack of action?