Collaboration in Civic Spheres

Ex-State agency head to pay $12.5K fine for ethics goofs

by Matt Rosenberg September 17th, 2012

A former U.S. Marshall and Clallam County Sheriff who was forced to resign as head of Washington Criminal Justice Training Commission has agreed to pay a $12,500 penalty in a civil case brought against him by the Washington State Executive Ethics Board, that was settled via final board approval last Friday. The stipulated facts, conclusions and order says that when (William Joseph) “Joe” Hawe ran the state commission from September 2010 until his resignation in mid-October of last year, he used his position as executive director to improperly benefit himself and others. According to the settlement, Hawe used commission facilities and staff to benefit a non-profit on whose board he served and to prepare materials he used in an outside teaching job. When deeply discounted tickets were made available for commission staff to attend a motivational seminar, he arranged for one to go to his son, who did not work at the commission. His son also attended a grant writing seminar with some commission staffers while others who wanted to attend were not allowed to go. (Public records show a Joseph Hawe, age 29, living at the same Olympia address as William Joseph Hawe, age 63.) The senior Hawe also directed commission staff to buy “motivational and inspirational wall art” from a company run by his sister.

Hawe served on the board of the non-profit Safe Call Now, or SCN. At his direction, the group held at least four meetings at the Washington Criminal Justice Training Commission’s Burien training center. Hawe not only attended, but also directed commission staffers to attend and take notes, prepare the notes later, and arrange for refreshments, paid for by the state. he is still listed as a board member on the non-profit’s board roster, where his bio lists him as still serving as executive director with the commission even though he resigned his position there almost one year ago.

Hawe taught classes at Seattle University as outside employment, and had a commission staffer on at least two separate occasions make copies of materials using commission equipment and supplies.

Public Data Ferret’s Washington State+Ethics archive

The settlement says that these and the other missteps by Hawe appear to violate the Washington State Ethics in Public Service Act, and an aggravating factor was that the actions “significantly reduced the public respect and confidence in state government employees, were continuing in nature, and impaired a function of the agency.” Mitigating his goofs are that he resigned from state government and the mistakes weren’t intentional, the board stated in the settlement document.

The $12,500 fine is higher than that levied in most other state ethics board settlements in Washington, but still far short of the maximum fine of $5,000 for each violation of the state ethics act.

Hawe’s position paid $105,000 per year, according to an article in the Seattlepi.com. Hawe’s total compensation in 2011, up to his resignation in mid october, was $89,776, according to a Spokane Spokesman-Review database. The Washington Criminal Justice Training Commission provides professional education for law enforcement and corrections personnel and handles de-credentialing of officers fired for misconduct. It has a training center in Burien and an office in Lacey, near the state capitol in Olympia. Hawe was replaced by former King County Sheriff Sue Rahr. A 14-member board of directors oversees the commission. It includes Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna, Washington State Patrol Chief John Batiste and King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg.


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