House Bill 2627 was passed and signed into law effective July 1, 2000. The effect of this bill is to extend the applicability of prior ethics laws to all unclassified professional staff and faculty who are in the Regents system. The effect of this recent legislation is to change the "ground rules" under which Regents employees perform their duties and interact with outside third parties.
A brochure has been published by the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission. The Commission is responsible for interpreting the ethics laws and imposing fines and penalties for their violations. The brochure is an overview of the present state of the law and serves only to introduce several of the more common rules and issues.
Of special note is the prohibition of acceptance of gifts of free or discounted meals from sources outside of state government. While there are several exceptions to this rule, you are strongly encouraged to consult with an attorney in the legal counsel's office to ensure any acceptance of a gift is consistent with the legislation. The law does include monetary penalties for violations, so prior consultation is important.
The University's attorneys are currently reviewing the law and seeking clarification of its applicability to situations commonly experienced at the Medical Center and in our practice. They will provide further advice and interpretations as information and guidance on these changes become available.