2-203 Standards of Conduct

Secs. 2-203.01 Standards of Conduct - General Policy
  • (a) To an unusual extent and in a special way, employees in the City organization are "Good Will Ambassadors". Such status involves a degree of duty and obligation regarding public and private conduct, which is not common to other classes of employment. The attitude and deportment of a City employee should at all times be such as to promote the good will and favorable attitude of the public toward the City, its programs, and policies.
  • (b) All employees are encouraged to develop skills and seek formal training that will enhance their personal development and add to the overall expertise of the organization.
  • (c) It is the policy of the City to expect from employees compliance with the PAP, state statutes, federal regulations and departmental rules in the performance of duties, as well as compliance with all safety rules and standards. An employee who violates any of the Standards of Conduct, departmental rules, or the PAP shall be subject to disciplinary action.
 Secs. 2-203.02 Conflict of Interest
  • (a) Employees in a position to influence actions and decisions of the City or a member of the managerial staff shall refrain from relationships which may adversely affect the exercise of their independent judgment in dealing with suppliers of goods or services and other persons not employed by the City.
  • (b) Employees shall not accept loans, advances, gifts, gratuities, or favors the value of which exceeds twenty-five dollars ($25.00) from a supplier, bidder, or other person doing business with the City.
  • (c) An employee shall not use his position with the City to obtain or attempt to obtain any special preferences, favors, privileges or exemptions for himself or for any other person.
  • (d) No employee shall disclose confidential information gained by reason of his official position with the City except in and as a part of his normal duties as a City employee; nor shall such employee use such confidential information not available to the public for personal gain or benefit.
  • (e) When an employee has or anticipates creating a business relationship with another person, partnership, firm, corporation or other business entity which does or seeks to do business with the City, or any division thereof, the employee shall advise the Department Head in writing as soon as that relationship is known. Failure to so advise the Department Head may result in immediate termination.
  • (f) Employees shall not accept employment or engage in any business or professional activity which they might reasonably expect would require or induce them to disclose confidential information acquired by them by reason of their official position or that by nature of the employment give rise to a public perception of a compromise of duties.
  • (g) Any employee of the City who is or becomes an officer, director, agent, or member of, or owns controlling interest in any corporation, firm, partnership, or other business entity which is subject to the regulation of, or which has substantial business commitments with the City, shall file a statement to this effect according to State Statutes.

    The Department Head will notify the City Manager of any situation covered by paragraph A - G above who will determine whether there is a conflict of interest or a potential conflict of interest and direct the employee's activities in such a way that the conflict of interest no longer exists. The City Manager's determination as to whether there is a conflict of interest or a potential conflict of interest shall be final.
Secs. 2-203.03 Political Activity
  • (a) Employees may engage in political activities during their non-duty time so long as their activities do not interfere with the operation of City business.
  • (b) Employees shall not wear or display political badges, buttons or stickers when on duty, riding in or on City equipment or when in a City uniform.
  • (c) Employees shall comply with all state and local laws involving political activity.
  • (d) Employees may run for elective office or be appointed to non-elective office other than those involving the City of Lake Wales so long as the position in no way interferes with their work as a City employee.
Secs. 2-203.04 Employment of Relatives
The City does not automatically prohibit members of the same family from working for the City. Each situation involving employment of a relative must be reviewed on its own individual merits. As a general guideline, however, employees should know that the City will not allow the employment of relatives in any situation where a conflict of interest exists or where there is a substantial likelihood that a conflict of interest will arise. Employees' relatives will not be employed by the city under any of the following circumstances:
  1. Where one relative directly supervises, evaluates, appoints, discharges, or disciplines the other.
  2. Where one of the parties is a department head.
  3. Where one of the parties authorizes payroll actions of the other.
  4. Where one of the parties has possession of confidential information about the other.
It is the obligation of all affected employees to immediately advise their Department Head if a change in his situation occurs or is anticipated that will result in his becoming related to another employee so the effect, if any, of the relationship on City operations may be fully explored and appropriate action taken.

"Relatives" include an employee's parent, child, spouse, brother, sister, in-laws, step relationships and employees in a relationship and sharing living quarters.
Secs. 2-203.05 Outside Employment
  • (a) Employees are not restricted from engaging in other employment during their off duty hours. However, City employment shall be considered the primary employment and no employee may engage in outside employment which would interfere with the interest of City service.
  • (b) Employees who have other jobs or who seek to have other jobs, must give written notification to his/her immediate supervisor on Form 0208 - Notification of Outside Employment.
  • (c) Employees sustaining injuries while engaged in outside employment are ineligible to receive benefits under City Workers' Compensation because of disability resulting from outside employment.
  • (d) Equipment of any nature, facilities, vehicles or property of the City shall not be used by employees for outside employment.
  • (e) If in the judgment of the Department Head, the employee's other employment causes or may cause absences, tardiness, or otherwise interferes or may interfere with the operations of the City or his responsibility as an employee of the City, including but not limited to availability for scheduled and unscheduled overtime and/or call-ins, the employee may be required to quit the other job or leave City employment.
  • (f) If permission to engage in other employment is granted, it may be withdrawn at any time if in the opinion of the Department Head the responsibilities of the job are inconsistent with the employee's responsibilities or in any way interferes with his duties as an employee of the City.
Secs. 2-203.06 Release of Information
  • (a) Employees shall at all times be courteous, friendly and helpful to those members of the public who seek information.
  • (b) Unless release of information concerning personnel records or the operations of City business is a normal part of their duties, or unless under subpoena, employees will not release and, if asked will courteously decline, to reveal information pertaining to personnel records and other City business and shall direct such inquiries to the Human Resources Department.
Secs. 2-203.07 Solicitation & Distribution
  • (a) Employee contributions to recognized charitable organizations are purely voluntary. No coercion of an employee to make contributions shall be permitted.
  • (b) Employees of the City are prohibited from conducting or promoting private business for gain during on-duty hours or within any City building.
  • (c) Employees are prohibited from soliciting for any reason during time they or the person they seek to solicit are being paid to perform actual work. Such solicitation includes solicitations on behalf of or in opposition to a labor organization.
  • (d) Employees are prohibited from distributing literature of any kind during hours they are being paid to perform actual work or in any area where employees are engaged in work at any time.
  • (e) The solicitation and distribution prohibitions set forth in paragraphs C and D above shall not apply to solicitation and/or distribution by the City or its managerial staff when such is part of the normal operation of City business.
Secs. 2-203.08 Employees' Personal Life & Debts
Employees shall handle their personal life, including their financial obligations, in such a manner that it will not interfere with the efficient operation of City business or the performance of their own job responsibilities.
Secs. 2-203.09 Use of City Property
Employees shall not use City property, equipment, or vehicles except in the performance of official duty, nor permit their use by an unauthorized person, either on or off duty. Employees may be allowed to use vehicles to and from work by permission of the City Manager, on a case-by-case basis.
Secs. 2-203.10 Uniforms, Dress & Appearance
  • (a) Employees supplied uniforms by the City, or expected to wear uniforms in the performance of their job, shall report in a clean full uniform on each day worked. Failure to report in a clean uniform may result in the employee being sent home for the day without pay. Repetition of such conduct shall subject the employee to discipline.
  • (b) Employees are expected to report to work in appropriate, well maintained and clean clothes. Shorts are not allowed unless part of a City uniform or specifically allowed by a Department Head after approval by the City Manager.
  • (c) Employees are expected to observe normal and reasonable standards of personal hygiene. Failure to do so may result in the employee being sent home to correct the situation or for the day without pay. Repetition of such conduct shall subject the employee to discipline.
  • (d) Beards and mustaches will be allowed, except as otherwise prohibited by law or where in the opinion of the Department Head they interfere or tend to interfere with the safe and efficient performance of the job. All hair, beards and mustaches must be of a length so as not to create operational or possible safety problems and must be maintained in a clean, neat and orderly fashion.
  • (e) Uniforms and equipment supplied by the City will be replaced by the City when they become unusable through normal wear and tear.
  • (f) The employee is responsible to reimburse the City for uniforms and equipment lost or damaged through the employee's negligence.
  • (g) Procedure for issuance of uniforms and safety items provided for the employee by the City shall be governed by departmental operating procedures. 
Secs. 2-203.11 General Prohibitions
  • (a) Employees are expected to be aware that they are public service employees and to conduct themselves in a manner which will in no way discredit the City, public officials, fellow employees or themselves.
  • (b) Employees shall avoid conduct or speech that is inconsistent with good order and discipline. They shall treat each other with the utmost courtesy and respect, and at all times refrain from making any derogatory remarks concerning each other. They shall direct and coordinate their efforts toward establishing and maintaining the highest level of efficiency, morale and achievement, and shall conduct themselves in such a manner as to bring about harmony among the various units of the City.
  • (c) No employee whose duties involve the use of a badge, card or clothing insignia as evidence of authority or for identification shall permit such badges, cards or insignia to be used or worn by anyone who is not authorized to use or wear them. Such badges, cards and insignia shall be used only in the performance of the official duties of the position to which they are related
Secs. 2-203.12 Bulletin Boards
There shall be an official City bulletin board in each department. Announcements of special events, changes in policies, transfer/promotional opportunities and other items relating to official City business will be posted there. No other information is to be posted on such bulletin boards. 
Secs. 2-203.13 Loyalty Oath
To the extent allowed by law, applicants and employees may be required to sign a loyalty oath as a condition of employment or continued employment.