Policy No. 1
Area: Board of Trustees
Description: Code of Ethics Pertaining to Conflicts of Interest for College Trustees and the College President
This code of ethics is applicable to members of the board of trustees and the college president.
These terms have the following meanings, unless otherwise indicated.
"Board" means the college trustees
"College matter" means any application, award, bid, claim, contract, license, proceeding, resolution or transaction made by, to, against or with the college, or which requires any official action by the board, officers or employees
"Employee" means any person compensated for full- or part-time employment services rendered to the college
"Immediate family member" shall be defined as spouse, child, parent or sibling residing in the same household
"Interest" means any personal, financial, economic, property or other concern amounting to a right, advantage, share or portion inuring directly or indirectly to a trustee or to an immediate family member or domestic partner of a trustee or college president, either singly, or in affiliation with any person or party as defined herein.
"Person or party" means any natural person, association, corporation, estate, partnership, proprietorship, trust or other legal entity.
3. Standards of Ethics
(a) No trustee or president, nor an immediate family member or domestic partner of a trustee or the college president, shall have any interest, financial or otherwise, direct or indirect, or engage in any business or transaction or professional activity, which is in conflict with the proper discharge of the trustee's or the president’s duties to the college.
(b) The prohibitions in section (a) shall also apply to any firm, association or partnership by which the president or trustee is employed, from which the president or trustee receives compensation, or of which the president or trustee owns or controls more than one percent of the profits or assets of that firm, association or partnership. Such prohibitions shall also apply to shareholders, associates or professional employees of a professional service corporation regardless of the extent or amount of their shareholder interest in such a corporation.
(c) No trustee or president shall use his or her official position to secure unwarranted privileges or advantages for himself or herself or others.
(d) No trustee or college president shall act in his or her official capacity in any college matter in which the trustee, the president, an immediate family member or domestic partner of a trustee or president has a direct or indirect financial interest that might reasonably be expected to impair the trustee's or the president’s objectivity or independence of judgment.
(e) No trustee or college president shall undertake any employment or engage in any business, transaction, service or professional activity, whether compensated or not, which might reasonably be expected to impair the trustee's or the president’s objectivity or independence of judgment in the exercise of his or her official duties.
(f) No trustee or college president shall accept, directly or indirectly, any gift, favor, service, or other things of value under circumstances from which it might be reasonably inferred, or which the trustee or the college president knows or has reason to believe, is offered for the purpose of influencing the discharge of his or her duties as trustee or college president.
(g) No trustee or college president shall knowingly create an impression or suspicion among the public having knowledge of the trustee's or the president’s acts, that he or she may be engaged in conduct violating his or her trust as a public official.
(h) No trustee or college president, nor any member or employee of a firm or corporation with which the trustee or president is affiliated, shall appear or negotiate on behalf of a party not affiliated with the college, in any matter before the college or in any cause or proceeding involving the college.
(i) No trustee or college president shall use, or allow to be used, his or her public office, or any information not generally available to the public, which the trustee or college president receives in the course of or by reason of the trustee's or president’s office, to secure financial gain, unauthorized privileges, advantages or employment for himself or herself, his or her immediate family members, his or her domestic partner, or others with whom the trustee or president is associated.
(j) A trustee and/or college president should devote time, thought and study to the duties and responsibilities of his or her role so as to render effective and creditable service.
(k) As an individual, a trustee has no legal authority outside of the meetings of the board and should conduct himself or herself accordingly with the president, college staff, local citizens, and all facets of the local community.
(l) An important function of the board is to establish college policies and goals and to audit the performance of the president in the fulfillment of these policies and the progress toward goals. However, trustees should leave the conduct of the educational program and the college's business to the president and administration.
4. Disclosure of Potential Conflict
(a) At first knowledge of a transaction involving the college that reasonably could give rise to a conflict of interest, a trustee or the college president shall disclose to the board the precise nature of the interest or involvement of the trustee or president or the trustee's or the president’s immediate family member or domestic partner in any college matter to be considered by the board or administration.
(b) Upon notification of the appointment or reappointment of a trustee, the president shall provide the trustee with a copy of this code of ethics. Within 30 days after the organizational meeting of the board each trustee shall file with the secretary, a form or statement specified by the board which discloses the nature of any financial interest, personal interest or business relationship which the trustee has which relates to the college or which the trustee is otherwise required to disclose under this code of ethics.
Violations of this code of ethics may constitute cause for removal of a trustee or president pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:64A-9 (Qualifications of appointed members of boards, terms of office, etc.; filling vacancies; no compensation of members) or imposition of other sanctions determined by the board to be appropriate.
This code is in compliance with Executive Order 65 issued by the acting governor of the State of New Jersey on November 15, 2005.
The executive director of the Executive Commission on Ethical Standards maintains authority to grant an exception from the terms of Executive Order 65 if, in the judgment of the executive director, the entity that employs, provides compensation or is owned by the board member or college president is one with which Atlantic Cape Community College may contract with pursuant to N.J.S.A. 52:13D-19 and N.J.S.A. 52:34-10 or where the public interest requires that an exception be made.
Potential or possible conflicts of interest shall be promptly referred by the college attorney to the State of New Jersey Executive Commission on Ethical Standards for an advisory ruling.
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