Ethics and Elections Commission Wayne Barnett, Executive Director
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Soliciting for Charities

  1. Can I ask vendors and contractors I work with to donate money or items for charity or other non-profit causes?

    Answer: No. To do so could pressure the vendor or contractor to donate out of concern that City business will be withheld if a donation is not made. Likewise, the contractor may feel that more or other City business will be given in return for the donation. In purchasing and contracting, the City strives to retain contractors and vendors based on the merits of their products or services, not due to favors given to City employees. It is important that contractors and vendors feel that their only obligations to the City are clearly spelled out in their contractual agreements.

    Similarly, consultants, contractors, and vendors who are subject to the Code (who provide more than 1,000 hours of service to the Ctiy in a 12 month period) must not use their positions and City relationships to solicit donations or other items.

  2. Can I circulate a sign-up sheet to my fellow employees to sponsor me in a run for a charity, and after the run collect the money they pledged?

    Answer: Yes, under the Ethics Code you are permitted to do this if the activity does not interfere with work, does not cost the City money, and has management approval. The Commission has said that under these conditions such activities for charitable causes may be allowed.

Last updated July 22, 2009.

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