Are there limitations on governing body members seeking a paid position with their municipality during their term of office?
Yes. Three key statutes either prohibit or circumscribe village
trustee or city council member attempts to obtain a paid position with
the municipality during that member’s term of office.
First, to avoid violating the state ethics code for local government
officials, a governing body member must consider the need to resign
prior to applying for any paid position with his village or city since
application for paid employment may reasonably be found to be "using
their public position or office to obtain financial gain or anything of
substantial value for the private benefit of the official . . ."
contrary to Wis. Stat. sec. 19.59(1)(a).
Second, Wis. Stat. sec. 66.0501(2) prohibits a governing body member
from being appointed to a position that was created during the
official's term of office irrespective of any resignation from the board
Third, to avoid committing a Class E felony, a governing body member
must resign before applying (informally or formally) for a position with
the village or city that pays more than $15,000 since pre-resignation
discussion or submission of an application for such employment may
constitute "negotiating" or "bidding" for a contract under circumstances
proscribed by Wis. Stat. sec. 946.13(1)(a). See Pecuniary Interest 386,
383, and 363.2.