Ethics and Elections Commission Wayne Barnett, Executive Director
About Us|Contact Us
Ethics Elections Elections Lobbying Whistleblower Commission

Ethics Home
Ethics Code
Advisory Opinions
Frequently Asked Questions
- Definitions
- Advice, Getting
- Advisory Boards
- Appearances
- Complaint Procedures
- Confidential Information
- Contractor and Client Information
- Covered Contractors and Vendors
- Family Members
- Financial Interests
- Former City Employees & Officials
- Former Employers and Clients
- Gifts
- Penalties
- Employee Political Activity
- Position, Use of
- Resources, Use of
- Soliciting for Charities
- Supervision

Confidential Information

  1. A co-worker told me that a lot of the information in the files I work with is confidential and I cannot use or share it. Is that correct?

    Answer: Partially. Covered Individuals may personally use or disclose any information that is also available to the public by request. Information that is not publicly available is only for internal use, and the Ethics Code prohibits your sharing or using it privately.

    Case law determines if and when information in a City file is confidential. Any questions about disclosure of information you work with should be directed to your department's management or Public Disclosure Officer.

  2. I think my neighbor is a good candidate for a job in my department. Can I tell her what they are looking for?

    Answer: You may give your neighbor information that is available to other candidates for the position. However, before you share information about rating criteria with an applicant, or information regarding a City promotional exam with someone who plans to take the exam, you should confirm with your manager that the information is publicly available. You may not give your friends, relatives, or anyone "inside information" that is not available to everyone else.

For the Ethics Code regulations on confidential information,
see SMC 4.16.070 or contact the SEEC for advice.

Last updated August 5, 2009.

Ethics and Elections Home | About Us | Contact Us | Commission | Ethics | Elections | Lobbying | Whistleblower