Political Activities of Faculty and Staff Exempt from the State Human Resources Act

University Policy 102.3, Political Activities of Faculty and Staff Exempt from the State Human Resources Act

Executive Summary: 

University EHRA employees who wish to run for or hold any elective or appointive public office are subject to regulations adopted by the Board of Governors. Before becoming a candidate for or occupying most offices, employees must make certain disclosures and receive various approvals on a prescribed schedule, or risk disciplinary action or dismissal.

Policy

The Board of Governors of The University of North Carolina has enacted regulations (UNC Policy Manual, Chapter 300.5) to avoid inappropriate conflict between the obligations of University employment and certain activities for University employees related to governmental and political activities.

The regulations apply to all The University of North Carolina faculty and staff members who are not subject to the State Human Resources Act. All such faculty and staff members are required to be familiar with and observe those regulations. Failure to do so is deemed resignation from University employment in some circumstances and may lead to disciplinary action or dismissal in other circumstances.

The principal areas regulated by the Governors' policy are:
  • election to public office,
  • appointment to public office,
  • becoming a candidate for public office; and
  • political campaign activities with respect to one's own or any other person's candidacy for election to public office.
 
Any faculty member or staff member exempt from the State Human Resources Act contemplating serving in an elective or appointive public office, or becoming a candidate, should contact the Office of Legal Affairs well before filing as a candidate for or assuming such office. The purpose of this contact is to review University policy in this area and to initiate the process for review of and action on the political activity by the Board of Trustees or Board of Governors if necessary. Where such approval is required, the faculty member or staff member must submit a completed "Petition Regarding Political Activity" on a form prescribed by the Board of Governors as early as possible but in no event later than the following: 
 
For affected academic periods beginning: Completed petition to be received by the Chancellor:
January (e.g., for a May primary contest) October 15 of preceding year
May/June (e.g., for fall elections affecting summer employment) March 15
August/September (e.g., for fall general election) June 15
Other periods 90 days prior to beginning of period
 
The Chancellor is hereby authorized to take all steps necessary to implement the requirements of the Board of Governors concerning political candidacy and officeholding, and concerning participation in political campaign activities, for all employees of The University of North Carolina at Charlotte not subject to the State Human Resources Act; however, the schedule for submission of petitions, the form for such petitions, and requirements for informing all exempt employees of the requirements related to political candidacy and officeholding shall be identical whether authority for final approval of the petition resides with the Board of Governors of The University of North Carolina or with the Board of Trustees of The University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
 
Revision History: 
  • Initially approved May 28, 1993
  • Updated March 21, 2016

Related Resources: UNC System Guidelines Concerning Use of UNC Resources for Political Campaign Activities