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Posted: January 24, 2012 10:19 a.m.

Ga. Sen. wants independent ethics commission

ATLANTA (AP) - Senate Democratic Chairman Doug Stoner is proposing legislation that would make the state's ethics commission an independent agency.

Senate Bill 315, filed Monday, would remove control of ethics enforcement from the General Assembly. The commission would be appointed by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and the Chief Judge of the Georgia Court of Appeals. Currently, members are appointed by legislators and the governor.

Supporters say the bill would legitimize ethics enforcement by removing control of the ethics process from those subject to its power. Outside groups have called for ethics reform in recent years after an ethics scandal involving former House Speaker Glenn Richardson forced him to resign from the position in 2009.

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