Notification is Required In Order to Run for Public Office, to Accept a Public Position or to Engage in Political Campaign Activities on Behalf of a Candidate in an Election
Employees and others working at or on behalf of PHI are encouraged to be civic minded and to be community volunteers. Community involvement, however, could include political activities such as an employee becoming a candidate for public office or working on another person's behalf in a campaign for public office. Employees must be mindful that ethical and legal compliance requirements could come into play as a result of such activities.
PHI has established a notification procedure for employees who wish to seek public office or accept a public position while holding a position with PHI or any of its subsidiaries. In addition, PHI has established procedures for employees to follow when engaging in political activities in support of a candidate for public office. These procedures apply to federal, state and local elections. The purpose of the Notification procedure is to ensure that PHI complies with all applicable campaign finance laws and avoids even the appearance of endorsing a particular candidate.
This policy provides notice to employees of PHI's pre-clearance requirements for such activities, as well as general information about the legal restrictions imposed by certain corporate contribution laws and the potential application of federal, state, or local conflict of interest laws. Please contact Senior Vice President of Government Affairs and Corporate Citizenship with any questions.
Prior to seeking public office, accepting a public position or engaging in political activities on behalf of a candidate, an employee must first notify and consult with the Senior Vice President of Government Affairs and Corporate Citizenship regarding any potential conflict or ethical or legal implications. Employees who wish to run for or accept an elected or appointed public office must also complete a form providing information about the office to allow for conflict of interest check and review for ethical or legal implications.
Because corporate contribution restrictions, conflict of interest laws, and other applicable laws are different in each jurisdiction and can be difficult to understand or apply to a specific case, employees are required to notify and receive pre-clearance in writing prior to (i) running for or accepting public office (elected or appointed), or (ii) engaging in political campaign activities (including, but not limited to, fundraising for a candidate for public office or working on a candidate's campaign). The Notification must be made in writing and submitted to the employee's supervisor and the Senior Vice President of Government Affairs and Corporate Citizenship, both of whom must sign the request in order to confirm the pre-clearing for the employee to proceed.
Federal law and the laws of many states prohibit corporations from making political contributions. Such prohibited contributions include both monetary contributions and "in-kind" contributions, such as the company's payment for services, or the use of corporate facilities, resources or personnel, to benefit a candidate or political party committee.
Thus, the following restrictions apply to employees of PHI and its subsidiaries.
If PHI, or a subsidiary, compensates an employee or provides benefits for time spent on a political campaign, the compensated time may constitute a prohibited or excessive in-kind contribution. Accordingly, in order to avoid a violation of law:
If an employee seeks to run for election to public office or accepts an appointed office, the employee may be subject to federal, state or local conflict of interest laws. For instance, such laws, depending upon the jurisdiction, may restrict the ability of PHI or its subsidiaries from lobbying or doing business with the specific governmental entity within which the employee holds office, or even with the entire jurisdiction. In addition, such laws may restrict an employee's involvement regarding governmental matters involving PHI or its subsidiaries. Some jurisdictions also prohibit PHI from paying a public official for any time that official spends performing a governmental function. For this reason, an analysis of applicable conflict of interest laws will be part of the Notification and pre-clearance process for any employee who wishes to seek or hold an elected or appointed public position.
Certain restrictions may apply to the PHI PAC in PHI's jurisdictions, in particular New Jersey.
The State of Maryland requires a semi-annual filing of contributions made by the executives of PHI and its subsidiaries.
Some states and localities have special laws that prohibit a company (i.e., PHI and its subsidiaries) from entering into a contract with a governmental entity for a certain period of time if certain of its employees, employees of its affiliates, or their immediate family members make or solicit political contributions. For more information concerning compliance with these laws and the specific states covered, please see "Pay-to-Play Laws" in the Corporate Business Policy on Interacting with Public Officials and Campaign Contributions.