Statement of the Chairman and Ranking Member Regarding Michael Collins
Pursuant to Committee Rule 7(d) and 7(g), the Committee on Ethics (Committee) determined on August 1, 2011, to release the following statement:
On May 18, 2011, the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) forwarded to the Committee on Ethics (Committee) a Report and Findings related to the receipt of outside earned income by Michael Collins, which he failed to report on his 2009 federal income tax return and his 2007, 2008, and 2009 Financial Disclosure Statements. OCE further indicated in its referral that Mr. Collins received income in 2009 that exceeded the outside earned income limit for senior staff. OCE recommended that the Committee further review the matter.
The Committee, pursuant to Committee Rule 18(a), conducted further review of the matter, as recommended by OCE. On August 1, 2011, the Committee unanimously determined that Mr. Collins violated House rules, laws, regulations or other standards of conduct and brought discredit upon the House of Representatives. Mr. Collins, as he has acknowledged, failed to report $54,000 in outside earned income he received for work on the John Lewis for Congress campaign from 2005 through 2010 on both his Financial Disclosure Statements and his federal income tax returns.
The Committee has therefore unanimously voted to issue a letter of reproval to Mr. Collins and require that he pay a $1,000 fine. In addition, Mr. Collins must take certain steps to remedy the violations, including amending the relevant Financial Disclosure Statements and income tax returns and paying all unpaid taxes, penalties, and interest. Mr. Collins has agreed to waive all further procedural steps and rights he may be entitled to in this matter under House and Committee rules and to accept these sanctions and remedies. Mr. Collins’ conduct, as well as the sanctions and remedies, are described in more detail in the attached Report and letter of reproval.
Pursuant to Committee Rule 17A(c)(2), the Committee on Ethics hereby publishes the attached Report, which includes OCE’s Report and Findings regarding Michael Collins and Mr. Collins’ response.