April 25, 1988


Opinion 88/5

Participating in fund-raising event
Canon 5B(2)

Re: Committee on Standards of Conduct Governing Judges
Your inquiry dated February 25, 1988

Dear Judge

In your inquiry to the Committee you have asked whether Canon 5B would be violated if you were to participate with the Miami dolphins in an exhibition basketball game. The objective of the event is to raise scholarship money. You point out in your inquiry that you have not been asked to solicit funds and the pre-event advertising will not identify you as a judge.

The Committee has agreed that your involvement in the basketball game and the associated advertising is prohibited by Canon 5B(2). Notwithstanding the worthwhile objective of the exhibition, it is the Committee's view that your participation implicates the prestige of your office for the purpose of raising funds and hence, is not permitted under Canon 5B(2).

The committee is expressly charged with rendering advisory opinions interpreting the application of the Code of Judicial Conduct to specific circumstances confronting or affecting a judge or judicial candidate. Its opinions are advisory to the inquiring party, to the Judicial Qualifications Commission and to the judiciary at large. Conduct that is consistent with an advisory opinion issued by the committee may be evidence of good faith on the part of the judge, but the Judicial Qualifications Commission is not bound by the interpretive opinions issued by the committee. Petition of the Committee on Standards of Conduct for Judges 327 So2d 5 (Fla. 1976).

Cordially yours,

Richard H. Frank, Chairman
Committee on Standards of Conduct Governing Judges

cc: All Committee Members

Participating Members: Judges Booth, Dell, Frank, Goldstein, Levy, Shutter and Attorney Page

All reference to the inquiring judge is deleted from the copies sent to the following individuals.

Mr. Sid White, Clerk of the Supreme Court of Florida
Linda Yates, Managing Editor, The Florida Bar Journal
Brooke S. Kennerly, Executive Director, Judicial Qualifications Commission.
Hon. Howard T. Markey, Chairman, Ethics Advisory Panel of the Judicial Conference of the United States .
Jeffrey M. Shaman, Esquire, Director, Center for Judicial Conduct Organizations
Ms. Jean Underhill, Librarian, Broward County Law Library
Mr. Robert Wallace, Librarian, Dade County Law Library
Mr. Brian Polley, Librarian, Supreme Court of Florida