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Connecticut Committee on Judicial Ethics
Informal Opinion Summaries

2010-20 (June 30, 2010)
Gifts; Discounts; Canons 2 & 5

Issue: May a Judicial Official accept a one-year subscription to the Connecticut Law Tribune (CLT) at a “special discounted government rate”?

Response: For the past four years, the Judicial Branch has purchased copies of the CLT at a special discounted group rate ($60/year) for judges, JTRs, state law libraries and other judicial branch officials. Judicial Officials have received a letter from CLT advising that, due to financial cutbacks, the Judicial Branch will no longer be purchasing individual CLT subscriptions for judges, JTRs and other judicial branch officials. The CLT is offering judges, JTRs, and other judicial branch officials a one year subscription at the same group rate ($60/year) previously made to the Branch. According to the CLT, a basic annual subscription is $425 per year, although group rates may apply. Based on the information provided, the four Committee members present unanimously determined that a Judicial Official may ethically accept the discounted rate as long as the publication is for official use. The Committee construed the CLT’s discounted rate offer as falling within Canon 5 (c)(4)(A). Accordingly, Judicial Officials may take advantage of the discounted rate and do not have to report it as a gift under Canon 5 (c)(4)(C), provided the intent is to receive the publication for official use. 

Committee on Judicial Ethics



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