The district office of legal services is the official district contact for the May bond election.
By Zachary-Taylor Wright
The district sent a memorandum Monday to all employees of the Alamo Community College District explaining the “legal and ethical guidelines” for discussing the May 6 bond election.
According to the email attributed to District General Counsel Ross Laughead, it is proper for Alamo Colleges employees to inform the public about the bond issue, but employees cannot express favor or opposition for the bond issue with district or college resources or while on payable district hours.
According to the email, “public resources, including your (employees’) time on the job, district mail, email, telephones and information technology, may not be used in any way to advocate for or discourage the passage of the bond measure, but only for strictly factual information.”
The email broadly defines advocacy to include terms like “needs,” “requires” and any subjective wording.
Individuals cannot be encouraged to vote for or against the bond election during work hours, but they can be encouraged to vote on the bond election without bias.
The email suggests employees “consider adding a disclaimer to your personal email or social media postings: ‘Please note this message is personal, rather than official college district business, and was created using personally owned equipment and accounts on my own time.’”
According to the email, citizens and other “interested individuals” should be directed to the bond election website or the official district contact and says the official contact for the bond election is the office of legal services.
Any factual information employees wish to share with Alamo Colleges attribution must be approved by the office of legal services or obtained directly from the bond election website.
According to the email, “during bond elections, most complaints filed involve improper use of public resources for advocacy. This use is an individual criminal misdemeanor.”
For more information about the bond issue or how to attain approval for factual information, call the district office of legal services at 210-485-0059.