Guidance for Determining Conflicts of Interest

The Voters FIRST Act (Act) establishes a Citizens Redistricting Commission (Commission) whose work is open to public scrutiny and whose members are as free from partisan political influence as possible. To achieve that goal, the Act makes certain individuals ineligible to serve on the Commission. This document describes how these requirements operate. Individuals who are completing the supplemental application should read this information before completing the questions related to Family Information.

Am I Eligible to Apply?

Disqualifying Conflicts of Interest Based on Political Activities or Current Relationships

Ineligibility based on political activities prior to applying

The Act makes an applicant ineligible to serve on the Commission if, during the 10 years immediately prior to submitting an application, the applicant or a member of his or her immediate family as specifically defined for this purpose, have engaged in any of the following political activities:

If any member of your immediate family with whom you have a bona fide, or special, relationship has engaged in any of these activities, you are ineligible to serve.

Ineligibility based on current relationships

Certain individuals with employment, contractual, or familial relationship to certain public officials, are not eligible to serve on the Commission:

"Special," or Bona Fide, Relationship to Immediate Family Members

The existence of a "special," or bona fide, relationship with your immediate family member is not, by itself, an automatically disqualifying conflict of interest. A "special relationship," as defined below, only becomes disqualifying if it exists in addition to one of the conditions listed above.

The phrase member of his or her immediate family has been given a somewhat unique meaning for purposes of the Act. A member of an applicant's immediate family is an applicant's spouse, registered domestic partner, parent, child, sibling, or in-law (which includes the applicant's father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, and sister-in-law through marriage or domestic partnership) with whom the applicant has a "special," or bona fide, relationship. Step-parents, step-children, and step-siblings count as parents, children, and siblings. A person has a "special," or bona fide, relationship with a member of his or her immediate family member if any of the following are true:

Examples of "special relationships": Cohabitated with an immediate family member for a period or periods totaling 30 days or more during the past 12 months

  1. You are new in town and you have spent your first six weeks of this year looking for your own place to live. During that time, you stayed temporarily with immediate family members—your sister and brother-in-law.
  2. You live at home with your parents, and you pay them rent each month.
  3. You and your registered domestic partner lived with your partner's father for three weeks in April 2018 and three weeks in October of 2018.

Examples of "special relationships": Shared ownership of any real or personal property with a total value of $1,000 or more with an immediate family member during the past 12 months

  1. I own investment property with my adult daughter with a market value of $150,000. My daughter is a member of my immediate family. We also have a special relationship because we have shared ownership in real property having a value during the past 12 months of $1,000 or more.
  2. I purchased a motorcycle with my son-in-law a few years back. We paid $1,500, but it's only worth $950 now. However, six months ago it was worth $1,050. My son-in-law is a member of my immediate family. We also have a special relationship because we have had shared ownership in personal property having a value of $1,000 or more during the past 12 months.
  3. My three siblings and I inherited my parents' house with a market value of $275,000 and we still own the home together. After a family dispute five years ago, I have had no interaction with my siblings except our discussions regarding the house. My siblings are members of my immediate family. We also have a special relationship because we have shared ownership in real property having a value of $1,000 or more during the past 12 months.

Examples of "special relationships": Financial benefit totaling $1,000 or more given to or received from an immediate family member during the past 12 months

  1. My adult daughter does not reside with me but I did give her a gift of $1,500 for home repairs two months ago. My daughter is a member of my immediate family. We also have a special relationship because, during the past 12 months, I have provided her with a financial benefit having a value of $1,000 or more.
  2. This past summer, my brother did me a favor by donating several weekends of his time to build a deck onto my house. Hiring someone to perform the work would have cost $2,000. My brother is a member of my immediate family. We also have a special relationship because, during the past 12 months, he provided me with a financial benefit having a value of $1,000 or more.
  3. My father bought me a used car for my birthday 10 months ago. The value at the time he purchased it was $1,050. It is worth less today. My father is a member of my immediate family. Despite the current value of the car, we have a special relationship because, during the past 12 months, he provided me with a financial benefit having a value of $1,000 or more.

Conflicts of Interest Based on "Special Relationship" Combined With Other Factors

You are only ineligible to serve on the Commission if a member of your immediate family, with whom you have a "special relationship" has also engaged in political activities as listed under Ineligibility based on political activities prior to applying.

Example of ELIGIBLE applicant: "Special relationship" to family members and his or her political activities

  1. Your mother was appointed by the Governor to serve on the Public Utilities Commission in 2014.

Example of INELIGIBLE applicant: "Special relationship" to family members and joint ownership of property

  1. You have a brother who was appointed by the Governor to serve on the State's Agricultural Labor Relations Board. You and your brother also jointly own a restaurant business that is worth more than $1,000.