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Code of Ethics

In response to recent financial account scandals in the private sector mandates issued by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, created by Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, The Office of the State Controller of North Carolina has adopted a Code of Ethics. The Code of Ethics establishes the standard for the minimum levels of expected behavior and is also intended to serve as a guide for making ethical decisions. It is as follows:

All government accounting professionals (employees and contractors working for the State of North Carolina) are enjoined to adhere to legal, moral and professional standards of conduct as set forth in this code are promulgated in order to enhance the performance of all persons engaged in public accounting.

Personal Standards:

Government accounting professionals shall demonstrate and be dedicated to the highest ideals of honor and integrity in all public and personal relationships to merit the respect, trust and confidence of governing officials, other public officials, employees, and of the public.

  • They shall devote their time, skills and energies to their office both independently and in cooperation with other professionals.
  • They shall abide by approved professional practices and recommended standards.

Responsibility as Public Officials:

Government accounting professionals shall recognize and be accountable for their responsibilities as accounting professionals in the public sector.

  • They shall be sensitive and responsive to the rights of the public and its changing needs.
  • They shall strive to provide the highest quality of performance and counsel.
  • They shall exercise prudence and integrity in the management of funds in their custody and in all financial transactions.
  • They shall uphold both the letter and the spirit of the constitutions of the United States of America and the State of North Carolina, legislation and regulations governing their actions and report violations of the law to the appropriate authorities.

Professional Development:

Government accounting professionals shall be responsible for maintaining their own competence, for enhancing the competence of their colleagues, and for providing encouragement to those seeking to enter the field of governmental accounting.
Government accounting professionals shall promote excellence in the public service.

Professional Integrity- Information:

Government accounting professionals shall demonstrate professional integrity in the issuance and management of information.

  • They shall not knowingly sign, subscribe to, or permit the issuance of any statement or report which contains any misstatement or which omits any material fact.
  • They shall prepare and present statements and financial information pursuant to applicable law and generally accepted practices and guidelines.
  • They shall respect and protect privileged information to which they have access by virtue of their office.
  • They shall be sensitive and responsive to inquiries from the public and the media, within the framework of federal, state, or local government policy.

Professional Integrity-Relationships:

Government account professionals shall act with honor, integrity and virtue in all professional relationships.

  • They shall exhibit loyalty and trust in the affairs and interests of the government they serve, within the confines of this Code of Ethics.
  • They shall not knowingly be a party to or condone any illegal or improper activity.
  • They shall respect the rights, responsibilities and integrity of their colleagues and other public officials with whom they work and associate.
  • They shall manage all matters of personnel within the scope of their authority so that fairness and impartiality govern their decisions.
  • They shall promote equal employment opportunities, and in doing so, oppose any discrimination, harassment or other unfair practices.

Conflict of Interest:

Government accounting professionals shall act with honor, integrity and virtue in all professional relationships.

  • They shall discharge their duties without favor and shall refrain from engaging in any outside matters of financial or personal interest incompatible with the impartial and objective performance of their duties.
  • They shall not, directly or indirectly, seek or accept personal gain which would influence, or appear to influence, the conduct of their official duties.
  • They shall not use public property or resources for personal or political gain.


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