If you’re a non-elected official, decisions you make or actions you take must be unaffected by any political consideration or influence. To ensure that you are not subject to or don’t exercise political considerations in performing your job, Section 10-107 of the City Charter strictly limits political activity by non-elected City officials and employees. Generally, you may not:
To ensure that the City’s resources are used only for City business and not for political purposes, you also may not:
These restrictions cover most situations; please refer to the Board of Ethics website for more information. Section 10-109 of the City Charter provides that employees who violate these restrictions may face up to a $300 fine, 90 days in prison, and termination.
The State’s election code also prohibits you from serving as an election officer (judge of elections or minority or majority inspector). You may, however, work through the Committee of Seventy as a non-partisan volunteer at the polls on election day to answer voters’ questions and resolve problems. You must take leave to do so.
(Courts, Prothonotary, and Register of Wills employees are not subject to the City Charter restrictions. Some Charter restrictions on political activity may have limited application to City Council staff. Please contact the Ethics Board with any questions.)
IntegrityWorks offers guidance for commonly-occurring situations. These are not the only situations in which ethics rules would apply; they are simply the most common ones. Other guidance may be added to this site as situations warrant.
These are general guidelines. Because each situation presents its own set of facts, this general guidance isn’t advice on which you can legally rely. If you want to be absolutely sure that your conduct complies with applicable ethics laws, you should seek advice before taking action.