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Generally speaking political activities shall be conducted in conformance with applicable state and federal law. However, the following subsections provide current guidelines for local political activities.
(A) Permitted political activities. Permissible political activities shall include, but may not be limited to, the following:
(1) The right to vote;
(2) The right to make public speeches;
(3) The right to campaign for or against political candidates;
(4) The right to speak out and give his or her opinions on questions of public policy, political subjects and political candidates;
(5) The right to distribute political literature;
(6) The right to make campaign contributions; and
(7) The right to seek public office.
(B) Prohibited political activities. Prohibited political activities shall include, but may not be limited to, the following:
A public servant may not:
(1) Engage in political activities while at work or on duty;
(2) Use his or her official position of employment to coerce or inhibit others in the free exercise of their political rights;
(3) Use his or her official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the result of an election or a nomination for office; and
(4) Directly or indirectly coerce, attempt to coerce, command or require a subordinate officer or employee to pay, lend, or contribute anything of value to a party, committee, organization, agency, or person for political purposes.
(C) Political candidacy by city employees. The following shall apply when city officers and employees seek elected office:
(1) A city officer or employee may seek election to a political office. If elected to political office, and such office is an elected office within city government, or such office is clearly inconsistent, incompatible, or in conflict with his or her duties as a city officer or employee, he or she shall terminate city employment prior to assuming the elected position;
(2) If a city officer or employee seeks election to a city office, then during the campaign for said office he or she shall scrupulously avoid engaging in any prohibited political activity under division (B) above; and
(3) An employee may be a candidate for nonpartisan boards such as, but not limited to, a school board, and if elected, may retain the city position. However, if such office will, on a regular basis, be clearly inconsistent, incompatible, or in conflict with his or her duties as a city employee, the employee shall terminate city employment prior to assuming the elected position.
(Ord. 7781, passed 9-5-95)