Seattle College District Policy
TITLE: Ethical Conduct/Conflict of Interest Standards
400.20 Definition of Employee
400.21 Basic Principle
400.22 Financial Interest in Transaction
400.23 Special Privileges
400.24 Compensation for Official Duties
400.50 Use of State Resources
400.60 Confidential Information
400.70 Employment After Public Service
The 1995 Code of Ethics Law makes all state officers and state employees subject to its rules. It includes Board of Trustee members and all District employees. Therefore, for purposes of this policy, when the term "state employee" is used, it shall also include state officers. (RCW 42.5.010)
No state employee may have an interest, financial or otherwise, direct or indirect or engage in a business or transaction or professional activity, or incur an obligation of any nature that is in conflict with the proper discharge of the state employee's duties. (RCW 42.52.020)
No state employee may participate directly or indirectly or be beneficially interested in an activity or transaction that may be made by, through or under the supervision of the employee.
No state employee may participate in a transaction involving the state in his or her official capacity with any organization or person of which the state employee is an officer, agent, employee or member, or owns a beneficial interest. (RCW 42.52.030)
A state employee may not use his or her official position to secure special privileges for himself or herself or any other person. (RCW 42.52.070)
A state employee may not ask for or receive any compensation from any source, except the State of Washington, for performing, not performing or delaying his or her official state duties. (RCW 42.52.110)
A state employee may not accept a gift, if it could reasonably be expected to influence the performance or nonperformance of the employee's official duties. A state employee may not accept a gift or gifts from any person with a total value in excess of $50.00 per year. See policy 400.25.20 and 400.25.30 below for specific rules, exceptions and limitations regarding gifts. (RCW 42.52.140 and .150)
400.25.20 Gifts - Rules, Exceptions and Limitations
The following items are presumed not to influence a state employee, and may be accepted without regard to the $50.00 limit stated in the District policy concerning gifts: (RCW 42.52.150)
- Unsolicited flowers, plants and floral arrangements;
- Unsolicited advertising or promotional items of nominal value, such as pens and note pads;
- Unsolicited tokens or awards of appreciation in the form of a plaque, trophy, desk item, wall memento or similar item;
- Unsolicited items received for the purpose of evaluation or review, if the employee has no personal beneficial interest in the eventual use or acquisition of the item by the employee's agency;
- Informational material, publications or subscriptions related to the employee's performance of official duties;
- Food and beverage consumed at hosted receptions where attendance is related to the state employee's official duties;
- Admission to, and the cost of food and beverages consumed at, events sponsored by or in conjunction with a civic, charitable, governmental, or community organization;
- Unsolicited gifts from dignitaries from another state or foreign country that are intended to be personal in nature.
The presumption that all items above are presumed not to influence an employee may be overcome based upon the circumstances surrounding the giving and acceptance of the particular item.
400.25.30 The term "Gift" as contained in District policy 400.25.10 above, does not include the following: (RCW 42.52.010 (9))
- Items received from family and friends if the clear purpose was not to influence the employee;
- Customary items related to an employee's outside business;
- Items exchanged at social events by co-workers;
- Reasonable expenses (travel, room, and meals) for a speech or seminar;
- Items returned or donated to charity within 30 days;
- Campaign contributions reported under RCW 42.17;
- Discounts available to employees as members of a broad base group;Other items specifically permitted by law.
Seattle College District VI (SCD) employees may accept an honorarium or a retainer as a consultant of an organization as long as the resulting relationship does not detract from or interfere with duties and obligations to SCD and meets the requirements of the Ethics in Public Service Act. For the purposes of this POLICY, "honorarium" means money or things of monetary value offered for a speech, appearance, article or similar item or activity in connection with the employee's official role.
Permission to receive honoraria may not be granted under any of the following circumstances:
- The person offering the honorarium is seeking or is reasonably expected to seek a contractual relationship with SCD, and the employee is in a position to participate in the terms or awarding of the contract;
- The person offering the honorarium is supporting or opposing an SCD regulation or action, and the employee may participate in the enactment or adoption.
Honoraria may not be received unless specially authorized by the Chancellor or applicable campus President prior to undertaking the activity for which an honorarium is to be paid (See attached procedure 400).
A state employee may not use state resources (the office, money, property or personnel) for personal benefit or to benefit another person/organization except where the use of state resources to benefit others is a part of the state employee's official state duties or in instances where the Chancellor, a college president, or designees have authorized the limited use of state resources to support, promote, or solicit on behalf of charitable organizations.
- 400.61 No state employee may accept employment or engage in any business or professional activity that the employee might reasonably expect would require or induce him or her to disclose confidential information acquired by the employee by reason of the employee's official position.
- 400.62 No state employee may disclose confidential information gained by reason of the employee's official position or otherwise use the information for his or her personal gain or benefit or the gain or benefit of another.
No state employee may disclose confidential information to any person not entitled or authorized to receive the information. See also SCD Policy 254, Access to Public Records.
- 400.71 A former state employee may not accept employment or compensation from an employer within one year of leaving state employment, if all three of the following conditions are present:
- The employee during the two years immediately preceding termination of state employment, negotiated or administered a contract with the new employer;
- The contract(s) had a total value in excess of $10,000;
- The former employee's duties with the new employer would include fulfilling or implementing that contract.
- 400.72 No former state employee may accept an offer of employment or receive compensation from an employer if the employee knows or has reason to believe that the offer of employment or compensation was intended, in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, to influence the employee or as compensation or reward for the performance or nonperformance of a duty by the employee during the course of state employment.
- 400.73 No former state employee may accept an offer of employment or receive compensation from an employer if the circumstances would lead a reasonable person to believe the offer has been made, or compensation given, for the purpose of influencing the performance or nonperformance of duties by the employee during the course of state employment.
- 400.74 No former state employee may at any time subsequent to his or her state employment assist another person, whether or not for compensation, in any transaction involving the state in which the state employee at any time participated during state employment. No former state employee may, within a period of two years following the termination of state employment, have a direct or indirect beneficial interest in a contract that was expressly authorized or funded by specific legislative or executive action in which the former state officer or state employee participated.
Board of Trustees – Revision & Adoption History
Companion Document : Pro400
Adoption Date : 1995/06/06
Revision Date : 2017/01/12