On November 7, 2008, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick announced the appointment of Joe Savage to a 12-member Task Force on Public Integrity (the "Task Force").
Prompted by the recent, highly publicized ethics issues within the Massachusetts legislature, the Governor charged the Task Force with studying Massachusetts's existing laws and regulations governing ethics, lobbying, and public employee conduct, and developing recommendations for legislation to strengthen the laws, investigative and enforcement mechanisms, and penalties.
Five associates--Kate McKenney, Jonathan Sclarsic, Ryan Copus, Ryan Ferch and David Newton--worked closely with the Office of the Governor's Legal Counsel to research the more than 50 proposals contemplated by the Task Force, reviewing other states' provisions and secondary sources, analyzing states' legislative and lobbying websites, and interviewing the Director and General Counsel of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board.
The Report, along with the proposed legislation titled, "An Act to Improve the Laws Related to Ethics and Lobbying," was unveiled at the Governor's press conference on January 6, 2009. The Governor filed the legislation on January 7.