The STANDARDS of CONDUCT SYSTEM by fanzhongqing

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									The STANDARDS of
CONDUCT SYSTEM
The STANDARDS of
CONDUCT SYSTEM
PRODUCERS                   AWARDS
Bill Daley                  Chris Kinnear
Ken McDonald
                            EDITORS
SOUND EDITOR
                            Bill Daley
Allyssa Wheaton-Rodriguez
                            Ken McDonald
PRODUCTION DESIGNER         Barbara Coen
Vickie Spinks               PROPS
INSTRUCTORS                 Wayne Abbott
Bill Daley                  Erin Allen
Ken McDonald                Teri Laird
Barbara Coen                Debbie Holland
                            Susan Kenyon
Critics                     Wanda Holiday
Bill Cerbone
Kim Mayfield
      Office of General
           Counsel

• Keith Gottfried, General
  Counsel
• Bill Daley, Regional Counsel
• Attorney-Advisor: Standards of
  Conduct
 The 14 Principles

• The preamble to the Government-
  wide Standards of Conduct contains
  what is commonly referred to as “The
  14 Principles” of Government Ethics.
• Upon these principles are built the
  regulations, which will be illustrated
  in the Questions and Answers to
  follow.
    List of the14 Principles
•   Public service is a public trust.
•   Financial interests can’t conflict w/ duties.
•   Don’t misuse nonpublic information.
•   Refuse gifts from Government clients.
•   Put honest effort into your work.
•   Avoid committing Government w/o authority.
•   Don’t use public office for private gain.
•   Practice impartiality in Government duties.
•   Protect and conserve Government property.
•   Outside employment can’t conflict w/ Federal job.
•   Disclose waste, fraud, abuse and corruption.
•   Be a good citizen and pay just debts.
•   Adhere to Equal Opportunity laws and regulations.
•   Avoid the appearance of wrongdoing.
         HIHRTS
         Reminder
Please be sure to update HIHRTS
when major changes happen in your
life: birth, adoption, marriage,
divorce, etc.
Do you need to change your
beneficiaries?
            Illustration
• Rea Boote is a Hsg. Mgr. Officer and a
  computer “wiz”. Rea completed a Fin.
  Discl. Statement (“450”) for 2006 but
  neglected to list her 25% ownership
  interest in Mousehouse, Inc., a software
  company. Rea has now been asked to
  serve on the tech. eval. panel (TEP)
  reviewing computer proposals for a new
  Pub. Hsg. system. Mousehouse, Inc., has
  submitted a proposal.

• Can Rea serve on the TEP?
            Answer                     Mouse-
                                      house, Inc.




• NO
• Because award of the systems
  contract to Mousehouse, Inc., or to
  any other offeror will have a direct
  and predictable effect on Rea’s
  financial interest. Rea cannot
  participate on the TEP team unless
  her disqualification has been waived.

 ► Financial interests can’t conflict w/ duties.
          Illustration
• Ido Goodworks, a LR office employee,
  volunteers as a bd. member of Disability
  Employment Options (DEO), a non-profit
  org. which provides job opportunities for
  the physically challenged community. DEO
  has its own work center and has been
  awarded two manuf. contracts with the Air
  Force. As a part of her board duties, Ido
  has been asked to oversee these two
  contracts.
• May Ido oversee these two Air Force
  contracts for DEO?
               Answer
• No
• Certain criminal statutes limit
  representational activities by gov’t
  employees before federal departments,
  agencies, and/or courts.
• Accordingly, as a HUD employee, Ido
  cannot represent DEO before the Air Force,
  either in person or by written
  communication which she signs.
 ALERT: Ido can represent herself or her family before
 federal gov’t and/or federal courts.
 ► Outside activities can’t conflict w/ Federal job.
        Illustration

• “Rah Rah” Boom Di Ay is the Chief
  Counsel of HUD’s Houston Office and
  a huge tennis fan.
  – While attending the Houston Open, “Rah Rah”
    bumps into Developer Dan and his father.
  – Dan and “Rah Rah” have worked together for
    years on numerous FHA-insured multi-family and
    Sec 202/811 projects.
  – Dan’s father gives “Rah Rah” two tickets to the
    U. S. Open worth over $750, saying that he is
    retiring and moving to Italy in 3 days and has no
    use for the tickets.
• Can “Rah Rah” keep the tickets?
             Answer

• NO
• The value of the gift exceeds
  the $20 gift limit.
  – Standards of Conduct regulations
    prohibit accepting any gift given to
    an employee because of his official
    position, unless the item is
    excluded from the definition of gift
    or falls within one of the
    exceptions to the “no gift” rule.
 ►Refuse gifts from Government clients.
        Illustration

• Sam Showoff drew his boss, Paulo
  Plaitstrate, for the annual Christmas
  gift exchange.
  – Hoping to improve his performance
    rating from last year, Sam gives his boss
    a Cross pen and pencil desk set worth
    $35.00.
  – Suspecting the desk set might be worth
    over the $10 gift exchange limit, Paulo
    seeks advice from the HUD Ethics
    Counselor.
• Can Paulo accept the desk set?
          Answer

• NO
• Regs permit a subordinate to give his
  supervisor a gift costing $10 or less
  on occasions on which gifts are
  given, such as Christmas time;
  however, the desk set exceeds the
  $10 gift limit.
  – Paulo must return the desk set to Sam.
► Refuse gifts from Government clients (employees).
      Illustration

• Ray and Maria are getting married.
  – Both are HUD employees.
  – Ray is Director of FHEO.
  – Maria is Head of Admin Services.
  – The Happy Couple sent invitations to
    many HUD friends, including Oprahe,
    who works for Ray.
  – Oprahe bought Ray and Maria a silver-
    plated tea set worth over $125 as a
    wedding present.
• May Ray accept the present?
            Answer


• YES
• Ray may accept the present even
  though he is Oprahe’s supervisor.
   – Ray and Maria’s wedding is a special,
     infrequent occasion which is an
     exception to the general rule that an
     employee may not give a gift to her
     supervisor.

► Refuse gifts from Government clients (employees).
          Illustration

• Several Office of Public Housing (PH)
  employees accepted home dinner
  invitations from officials of the PHA
  they were reviewing.
• Should the employees
  have accepted the
  dinner invitations?
               Answer

• NO
• Even if a home meal could be accepted
  because it costs less than $20, the
  acceptance of a meal is inappropriate in
  some cases.
  – In this instance, acceptance of home dinner invitations by
    PH employees conducting reviews of PHAs is not permitted
    because of the appearance of loss of impartiality.
  – Remember, even though acceptance of gifts may be
    permitted by one of the exceptions to the general rule, it is
    NEVER inappropriate and frequently prudent for an
    employee to decline a gift offered by a prohibited source.

    ► Avoid the appearance of wrongdoing.
            Illustration

• I am a HUD employee in the San Antonio
  Office and about to become a first-time
  homebuyer!
  – I saw four houses in a home magazine that
    were in my price range, but they are HUD-
    owned homes.
• May I purchase one of these properties?
                 Answer

• YES
        ALERT! RULE CHANGED IN 2005!
• But you must follow the procedures set forth in HUD
Housing Notice 05-10, which contains restrictions on
employees purchasing HUD-owned properties

 * Notice! This reference also applies to employees’
 immediate family members, including spouse,
 child, parent, sibling or roommate of a HUD
 employee. HUD Housing Notice 05-10

  ► Don’t misuse nonpublic information.
       Illustration

• Clu Less, an owner of an FHA insured
  development with his first HUD insured
  loan, asks Marsha Mello, a HUD project
  manager, to recommend an auditor familiar
  with HUD requirements to do his required
  audited financial statements.

• Can Marsha provide Clu Less with a list of
  the business names and phone numbers of
  auditors who she knows have worked on
  HUD projects?
            Answer


• Yes.

• However, employees must act impartially
  and not give preferential treatment to any
  private organization or individual. Marsha
  should tell Clu Less that she cannot
  recommend a particular auditor. However,
  she can provide him with a list of auditors.


  ► Practice impartiality in Government duties.
          Illustration

• Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge Chamber
  of Commerce and HUD are developing a small
  business workshop. As its share of the work HUD…
   – Developed the concept of the workshop
   – Initiated contact with principal parties
   – Arranged for printing and reproduction of conference
     materials
   – Will coordinate the event in terms of topics, timing,
     speakers, promoting to potential attendees
   – Will participate as a speaker/lecturer
• Alfred E. Newperson, the NO office manager, is
  worried that it might be considered a “co-
  sponsored” event, thus requiring Regional Director
  approval and Regional Counsel concurrence.
• Would this be considered a “co-sponsored”
  event?
             Answer

• YES
  – HUD is co-sponsoring the small business
    workshop with the non-Fed entities.
  – Alfred will need to obtain approval of the Regional
    Director and concurrence of the Regional Counsel
    in order for HUD to proceed as the event’s co-
    sponsor.
* Requires a minimum 1 week lead-time if there is not
Co-sponsorship Agreement. Requires 3-4 weeks or
longer lead-time if a Co-sponsorship Agreement is
required – Co-sponsorship Agreements need HQ
concurrence.

 ► Avoid committing Government w/o authority.
       Illustration

• Mercedes, TX is holding the City’s
  3rd Annual Rio Grande Valley
  Hispanic Business Exposition
  – As a participant at the Expo, HUD will:
    • Have a booth.
    • Be listed in promotional material.
    • Pay $200 “co-sponsor” fee.


• IS HUD a “CO-SPONSOR” of the
  Expo?
             Answer

• NO
• Hosting a booth, paying a “co-sponsor” fee and
  being listed in the promotional materials is not
  enough involvement to cause HUD to be a “co-
  sponsor” of the event.
   – HUD did not jointly develop the Expo w/the City
   – HUD’s participation in the event is not
     “substantive.”
• This event will be treated as a “widely-attended
  gathering” sponsored by a “prohibited source.”
   – With written approval from the Dept. Ethics
     Official (Bill Daley) and ADMIN approval of the
     $200 fee, HUD may set up a booth and be listed
     in the promo material.
  ► Avoid committing Government w/o authority.
          Illustration

• Peter, Paul and Mary, HUD
  employees, would like to attend the
  Governor’s Housing conference
  sponsored by the Arkansas Dev. Fin.
  Auth. (ADFA).
  – ADFA has agreed to waive the $80
    registration fee.


• May the employees accept the fee
  waivers?
           Answer

• PROBABLY
• Employees may attend and
  accept the waivers of the
  conference fees provided:
 – Sponsor’s offer must be unsolicited.
 – Employees’ attendance must further
   operations or programs of the Dept.
 – Since the sponsor is “prohibited source”,
   the Regional Counsel must approve the
   waiver of conference fees in writing.
  ► Refuse gifts from Government clients.
          Illustration




• Barbara Brownie, a HUD employee, is
  selling Girl Scout cookies as a fund raiser.
  She asked you if she could set up a
  cookie display on the office break room
  table.

• Is Barbara permitted to solicit sales
  of Girl Scout cookies in this
  manner?
           Answer

• NO
• While HUD employees are on official duty
  or in the Federal workplace, they may not
  sell items such as church or school fund-
  raising material, cookies or lottery tickets.
  Solicitations of pledges for walk-a-thons or
  similar events are likewise prohibited.
  However, you may:
  – Conduct fund-raiser before and after core work
    hours, on non-work time, and in non-HUD space
  – Post notices of the fund-raiser on the employee
    bulletin boards located in the office

   ► Don’t use public office for private gain.
         Illustration


• Kant Sing is employed as a lawyer
  for HUD. He tries out for American
  Idol, but Simon says his voice needs
  a LOT of work. During a break Randy
  asks Kant Sing if he would draft a
  will for him, because he is afraid
  some rejected contestant may get
  violent.
• May Kant Sing do legal work for
  Randy without getting approval from
  anyone at HUD?
           Answer

• NO

 If Kant Sing wants to do paid or unpaid
 work for anyone in the same professional
 field that he works in for HUD, then he
 must obtain prior written approval from the
 Regional Counsel. Applies to attorneys,
 architects, accountants, appraisers, etc.


► Outside employment can’t conflict w/ Federal job.
           Illustration


• Peggy Parent is a “sponsor” of her son’s
  Little League team.
• To help the team, Peggy has been asked to
  make 30 copies of the team’s roster and 30
  copies of the permission slips that the
  parents must sign.

    Can Peggy use the office copier to
  produce the required copies?
          Answer

• NO
• Making 60 copies on the office copier is an
  inappropriate use of HUD’s policy on
  “Limited Personal Use” of government
  office equipment, including Information
  Technology.
  – The notice authorizes limited use of the office copier
    as long as only small amounts of paper, toner, etc. are
    involved.
  – Employees should consult with their supervisor if there
    is any question of appropriate use of office equipment
    or information technology.


    ► Protect and conserve Government property.
       Illustration

•Alwayz Anoptimist receives an email
telling him that he can make big bucks
promoting a product of Sam Scamartist
called, “Diet Like a Duck”. All he has to do
is forward daily emails to his fellow
employees describing the product and
giving Sam’s website. Alwayz doesn’t have
a home computer, but doesn’t think it would
take much time at work to do this.


• Can Alwayz take the job?
                Answer

   No.
   An employee may not conduct a
   business at the office. An
   employee’s computer and email
   system are to be used to
   perform work related functions.
   This would not fall within HUD’s
   exception for limited personal
   use.
► Protect and conserve Government property.
      Illustration

• Tobi Tyrant, my supervisor,
  sometimes asks me to do personal
  favors, such as run to the Post
  Office or Credit Union, pick up
  Tyrant’s son from football practice,
  or wash out Tyrant’s mug after I
  bring Tyrant the morning coffee.

• Can Tyrant require me to
  perform these non-job related
  duties?
            Answer



• NO
• A supervisor may not use his or her
  supervisory or management position
  to seek a favor from a subordinate.
• This would violate the prohibition
  against using public office for
  private gain.

  ►Don’t use public office for private gain.
        Illustration

• I have been asked for a letter of
  recommendation by someone I
  worked with for several years
  while I was working in Single
  Family.
  – She is moving to Tulsa soon and
    will be seeking employment there.


• Can I give her a letter of
  recommendation on HUD
  letterhead using my HUD title?
         Answer

• YES
• You may write her a letter of
  recommendation using your HUD
  letter head and your official title
  based on personal knowledge of
  her ability and/or character.
  – You may also include examples of
    your work together, to illustrate
    your recommendation.
   ► Don’t use public office for private gain.
      Illustration

• The two West Texas towns of Angus
  & Longhorn are vying for limited SHP
  moneys under HUD’s 2006
  SuperNOFA.
  – “Desperate Dan,” the Angus City Mgr.,
    knows that he must win approval of
    the City’s application to keep his job.
  – Dan calls his CPD rep, Peggy Pleaser,
    and asks her the amount of rival
    Longhorn’s funding request.
• Should Peggy furnish Dan with the
  information he is seeking?
            Answer
• NO

• Disclosure of the amount of assistance
  requested by any applicant at any time
  during the selection process is a violation
  of the HUD Reform Act of 1989.
• Other disclosures which are impermissible
  at any time during the selection process
  are:
   – Any applicant’s relative standing
   – Any info contained in an application
       ALERT: If in doubt, ASK!
  ► Practice impartiality in Government duties.
      Illustration

• The little old lady who lives in a shoe
  has so many kids she needs a
  second job to supplement her HUD
  salary.
  • Elf Furniture of Fairytale City has offered
    her a part-time sales position working 25
    hours a week.
• May the “Little Old Lady” accept
  the offer of 25 hours per week?
            Answer
• YES

• As long as “Little Old Lady’s”
  part-time job does not interfere
  with her duty hours or her HUD
  work performance.
  – Generally, part-time employment up to
    20 hours will be approved.
  – More than 20 hours may also be
    approved; however, if the employee
    begins to sleep at work, it would be
    evident that the part-time job is
    impairing the employee’s ability to
    perform her duties.
 ► Outside employment can’t conflict w/ Federal job.
        Illustration


• Scarlett O’Hare is the Field Office Director
  of HUD’s New Orleans office.
  – Scarlett has been asked to serve as a member of
    the Housing Advisory Committee of the Louisiana
    Mortgage Finance Authority (LMFA).
  – LMFA is a State Housing Finance Agency that
    administers many of HUD’s programs for the
    State as well as being a HUD contractor.
• Is there a problem with Scarlett joining the
  Committee?
             Answer

• YES
• Since Scarlett’s responsibilities include
  overall supervision of HUD’s housing
  programs and HUD contracting within the
  New Orleans office jurisdiction.
  – Scarlett cannot join the Committee.
  – However, Scarlett can be the HUD liaison to the
    Committee if her supervisor agrees, and she
    follows procedures (Ethics Letter 98-1 is
    available from Regional Counsel).

 ► Outside activities can’t conflict w/ Federal job.
          Illustration

• My favorite Uncle died and left me
  325 shares of FNMA (“Fannie Mae”)
  securities.




• Can I keep the securities as a part of
  my investment portfolio?
              Answer




• NO
• FNMA securities which are involuntarily
  acquired must be reported to the Regional
  Counsel within 30 days of acquisition.
• You have 90 days to divest yourself of the
  securities.

   ► Financial interests can’t conflict w/ duties.
        Illustration


• Dorothy, a HUD employee, and her
  husband, Toto, are one month away
  from acquiring 4 units of rental
  property.
  – All units are rented and all the tenants’
    rents are assisted with Section 8 rental
    payments.

  – Can Dorothy and her husband complete
    the acquisition of this property?
         Answer

• NO
• An agency employee shall not directly or
  indirectly receive, acquire or own any Sec.
  8 subsidy payment made to or on behalf of
  a tenant of property owned by the
  employee: 5 CFR § 7501.104(a)(5).
  – However, Dorothy and her husband can keep an
    involuntarily acquired property which houses a
    Sec. 8 tenant, and the tenant can continue to
    receive assistance.
  – If the Sec. 8 tenant moves out, they cannot
    replace the tenant with another Sec. 8 recipient.
   ► Financial interests can’t conflict w/ duties.
        Illustration

• Betsy Broker is an investigator in
  FHEO.
  – She has a valid Oklahoma real estate
    license.
  – She would like to sell real estate on a
    part-time basis for members of her family
    and Church.
  – Alice, a woman at Betsy’s Church, would
    like Betsy to sell her restaurant, “Cow on
    a Bun”.                 MOO


• Is this permissible?
            Answer

• YES
• The standards of conduct prohibit active
  participation in or conduct of a business related to
  real estate, including real estate brokerage.
• This reg has been interpreted to permit Betsy to
  participate in a real estate transaction provided
  she does NOT:
      • advertise her services,
      • engage in multi-family property transactions,
      • engage in more than two real estate transactions
        per year,
      • engage in any HUD or FHA transactions
   • Therefore, it would be permissible for Betsy to
     assist Alice in the sale of her restaurant and
     receive a fee.
   ► Outside employment can’t conflict w/ Federal job.
          Illustration

1.   As a Dept. employee, can I sponsor a “meet
     the candidate” reception for a State
     Senator ?

     • Yes, Federal employees can sponsor “meet
     the candidate” meetings and receptions in
     their home or elsewhere. However, we may
     not sponsor a fund raiser in our homes or
     elsewhere. We may attend them and such
     events may be sponsored by our spouses in
     any location.
           Illustration

2.   Can an employee be a delegate to the
     Republican National Convention?

     •Yes, you are permitted to hold office in a
     political party.

3.   Is it okay for the office management and
     other staff members to attend a reception
     in honor of a Congressperson?

     •Yes, but if during duty day, must take
     annual leave.


     ► Be a good citizen and pay just debts.
       Illustration


• “Risky” Biznes is the PIH Dir. in HUD’s
  Albuquerque Office.
   – Last week, “Risky” began employment
     nego. w/ the Albuquerque HA for the
     position of Executive Director.
   – “Risky” is scheduled to lead a mgmt.
     review of the HA in 2 weeks.

• Is there a problem here?
           Answer

• YES
• “Risky” is seeking other employment w/
  HUD-related entities while still employed
  by the Department.
• Accordingly, “Risky” must:
  – Immed. disqualify himself from all Albuquerque
    HA matters and related supervisory duties.
  – Inform his supervisor of his need for
    disqualification.
  _ All Albuquerque HA matters must be routed to
    “Risky’s” supervisor.
   ► Outside employment can’t conflict w/ Federal job.
     Illustration
• During discussions with Builder Bob
  concerning the plans and
  specifications submitted by him for
  approval by HUD, Bob offered me a
  job.
• May I resign my position with HUD
  and immediately accept a position
  with Bob in the builder’s
  architectural and engineering
  department to prepare plans and
  specifications?
                   Answer
• Yes
• Federal law does not bar former gov’t
  employees from employment with any pvt.
  or public employer after Gov’t service.
• As a former HUD employee, however, you
  should not act as Builder Bob’s rep. to HUD
  on the particular matter in which you
  participated; however, you could work on
  the plans and specs. for the project in
  Bob’s office to comply with HUD’s
  requirements.

 ►   Public service is a public trust.
When in Doubt?
Contact your Agency
  Ethics Official to
Resolve a Question or
      Conflict

								
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