AGA believes its members first and foremost serve the public interest in accordance with the highest ethical principles. This Code of Ethics is both a standard of behavior to aspire to and a guide for making ethical decisions. The code contains specific language that sets the minimum expected levels of behavior. Violators are subject to disciplinary action; complaints can be filed online. However, the code is not simply a set of rules. It also creates an expectation that the association's members will do the right thing in any given situation.
Ethics ultimately is a matter of personal responsibility. Consistently making ethically correct decisions is not easy. It requires commitment and practice, which require first an awareness and then a motivation to act ethically. This code, and the association as a whole, provides guidance and support to members.
The public should reasonably expect that those who serve government are trustworthy. By accepting the opportunity to serve, members must also recognize the obligation to be accountable, which includes:
- Becoming familiar with and abiding by the expectations, standards and rules of the position and seeking out necessary information to interpret and apply them.
- Accepting personal responsibility for the foreseeable consequences of actions and inaction.
- Taking into account the long-term interest of the government and its citizens.
On this basis, AGA has developed its Code of Ethics and the objectives, principles and interpretations that support the code. Unless a limitation is specifically stated, the guidance in this code applies equally to members and Certified Government Financial Managers (CGFMs), whether they are in federal, state or local government, industry, education, or are retired. Holders of future certifications that may be developed by or with AGA shall abide by the code.