The Office of Government and Community Relations (GCR) is the University’s designated point of contact for government officials and their staff members. We must ensure that all contact with public officials be compliant with lobbying and ethics rules and regulations at all levels of federal, state, and local government.
Because of its ongoing engagement with public officials to advance its mission, the University is a registered lobbying organization at both the federal and state levels. All employees must comply with relevant laws and regulations. Any violation of these laws could lead to significant penalties for the University, ranging from large fines to criminal prosecution.
Before communicating with an elected/public official or before arranging a visit with a government official or staff member, all University faculty and staff must contact GCR by calling 315-443-3919, or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org or using the form, “Before a Government Visit.”
GCR can provide guidance when inviting government leaders to campus to speak or when engaging officials off campus.
Any University employee who has already had contact with a government official must report their activity to our office immediately. GCR will assist in determining whether a given activity is considered lobbying. GCR compiles and submits all lobbying activity to state and federal authorities on a regular basis.
The University encourages its faculty and staff to be engaged citizens in our democracy. Individuals are free to contact public officials with issues of concern to themselves, provided they specify they are acting in their capacity as private citizens, and are not representing the University. University telephones, e-mail, or letterhead cannot be used for personal non-University uses.
Gifts to Public Officials
Syracuse University, in order to remain compliant with lobbying rules and regulations, does not allow the giving of gifts to elected officials or government employees. Gifts include but are not limited to athletic tickets, meals, travel, entertainment, or lodging. Also not allowed are tokens of appreciation or recognition, or providing travel or meals related to official University events or business.
Before considering giving a gift or inviting a government official to an event that requires travel, accommodations, or meals, faculty and staff must contact GCR at 315-443-3919, email@example.com or using the form, “Before a Government Visit.”
For more information, read the University policy on lobbying, gifts, and reporting.