Gifts, Emoluments, Gratuities, Rewards, Loans, What Does it All Mean?

Many questions arise regarding the acceptance of gifts or the other descriptive words used in University Policy and State Statute. Now is a good time of year to review some of the basics.

University Policy 1-006 Individual Financial Conflict of Interest Policy, section III. (A.) ((4.)) states that the solicitation or receipt of a gift by a University Employee, whether directly or indirectly through the institution, is not allowed when the purpose is likely to improperly influence the Employee in his/her University responsibilities or when the gift is given to reward the employee for official action taken or in close proximity to recent past, present or future transactions.

Certain units on campus including the University Hospitals and Clinics and the School of Medicine have adopted more stringent policies that prohibit employees from accepting gifts of any value from vendors.

Changes to the Procurement Code that go into effect on May 1, 2013 (63G-6a-2304) will apply to the University and are much more detailed regarding emoluments (gifts). It will be unlawful for any person acting as a procurement officer or who in any official capacity participates in the procurement of any supplies, services, construction, real property or insurance for the University to ask, receive, offer to receive or accept an emolument. Expansion to this section is anticipated in the upcoming legislative session and criminal penalties are stated. The Purchasing Department will be providing training on Procurement Code changes including the gift and emolument topic in February and March which you won’t want to miss!

The best general advice for now was given at the recent Campus Legal Highlights Seminar provided by the Office of General Counsel: Do not accept gifts of any value from a vendor or supplier. Departments are encouraged to be proactive and inform vendors regarding University policy.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Glendon Mitchell, Associate Director of Purchasing, at 801-587-3784 or .

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