Carbondale, IL. (ECWd) –
State employees should already know that electioneering using state resources, such as their state email accounts, violates state ethics laws.
State officers and employees take mandatory classes on the subject, but some still try to flaunt the system, thinking they won’t get caught.
We were recently notified of Dr. Jerry Becker’s use of his state email to forward electioneering material which asked people to vote “YES” on the Nov ballot referendum for the Graduated Income Tax.
Becker forwarded an email, from his “[email protected]” email account, to an unknown number of individuals. Contained within the forwarded email, are links to documents asking people to vote “YES” on the tax referendum question.
This violates the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act, 5 ILCS 430, in which “Prohibited Political Activity” is defined, in part, as:
- (7) Soliciting votes on behalf of a candidate for elective office or a political organization or for or against any referendum question or helping in an effort to get voters to the polls.
- (11) Distributing, preparing for distribution, or mailing campaign literature, campaign signs, or other campaign material on behalf of any candidate for elective office or for or against any referendum question.
- (12) Campaigning for any elective office or for or against any referendum question.
This violates SIU Policy, Section 7 (A), by using university property and resources to distribute emails soliciting a “YES” vote on a referendum question on the November ballot.
We asked Dr. Becker to comment, but he has not responded as of publication.