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Advisory Opinions Archive

Advisory Opinion Subject Question(s) Cross Reference RCW/WAC Reference
09-01
  • Web links on Agency Website
  1. What type of links can a state agency provide on its official website? See Opinion
RCW 42.52.160
09-04
  • Use of State Resources for Union Mailings
  1. Can a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) require a state agency to include printed information supplied by a Union into the worker's pay envelopes, particularly a flyer regarding legislative initiatives? No.
RCW 42.52.560
RCW 42.52.160
RCW 42.52.070
RCW 42.52.180 WAC 292-110-010(6)
05-01
  • Use of State Resources / Cell Phones
  1. May a state official or employee use a state-owned cellular telephone to make personal local calls when no landline is available without violating RCW 42.52.160?
RCW 42.52.160 WAC 292-110-010
03-06
  • Application of the Ethics in Public Service Act’s financial interests provisions to non-federal grants
  1. Do the alternate conflict of interest provisions provided for higher education in the Ethics Act’s financial interests in transactions section apply to both federal and non-federal grants or contracts? Yes / See Opinion
RCW 42.52.030
RCW 42.52.901
02-01A
  • Use of State facilities to conduct union business
  1. May a state employee use state vehicles or other state resources to attend meetings or conduct union business related to contract negotiation and administration? See Opinion
  2. Does the Ethics in Public Service Act prohibit certain uses of State facilities by a union? See Opinion
RCW 42.52.160
02-05
  • Use of State Facilities to Gamble
  1. May a state officer or employee use state facilities or resources to gamble? Generally No - See Opinion
  2. If a specific gambling activity, such as a sports pool, was legal, could a state officer or employee use state facilities on a de minimis basis to conduct that activity? Generally No - See Opinion
RCW 42.52.160 WAC 292-110-010
00-03
  • Use of state resources
  • Cell phones
  1. If a state employee is issued a cellular phone for official business, can the state employee modify the phone to establish a personal line for calls that will be paid for by the employee? See Opinion
  2. Can a personal line be installed if a state-purchased cellular phone is issued to replace a personal cell phone? Yes / See Opinion
  3. Can a state employee remedy any conflict of interest created by installing a personal line on a state-owned cellular phone by reimbursing the state for the cost of the cell phone? No / See Opinion
RCW 42.52.160 WAC 292-110-010
00-03A
  • Use of persons, money, or property for private gain;
  • Use of state resources
  1. This opinion supplements Advisory Opinion 00-03.
RCW 42.52.160 WAC 292-110-010
99-06
  • Outside Compensation
  • Expert Testimony
  1. Can a state employee who serves as a Food Program Technical Expert accept outside compensation to provide expert advice and testimony in an out-of-state case involving food borne illness?
RCW 42.52.020
RCW 42.52.120
RCW Yes / See Opinion WAC Yes / See Opinion
97-04
  • De Minimis use of state resources
  • Computers
  • Substitution of state equipment for personal equipment
  1. If an agency substitutes a state officer's or employee's personal computer equipment with state equipment so that the officer or employee can work at home, may the officer or employee make the same private use of the replacement state equipment that he or she could make of his or her personal equipment? Yes / See Opinion
RCW 42.52.160 WAC 292-110-010
96-04
  • State Employees
  • De minimis use of state resources
  1. RCW 42.52.160 prohibits use of state resources for private benefit or gain. Does a state officer or employee violate this limitation if he/she receives and makes telephone calls during office hours about the vanpool in which he/she participates? See Opinion
  2. Does a state officer or state employee violate RCW 42.52.160 by using electronic mail to send a brief message to all employees announcing the birth of an employee/co-worker's child? Probably No / See Opinion
RCW 42.52.160 WAC 292-110-010
96-07
  • Outside employment
  1. Can a state officer or employee with specialized knowledge accept employment as an expert witness? See Opinion
RCW 42.52.120
96-11
  • De minimis use of state resources
  • Charity
  1. May state officers or employees use state resources to coordinate state-wide volunteer construction projects? No / See Opinion
  2. May state officers or employees use state resources to coordinate an occasional fund- raising activity for charity? Yes / See Opinion
RCW 42.52.160 WAC 292-110-010