Department of Administrative Services Central Procurement
Conflict of Interest and Related Party Policy/Purchaser Representation of Independence
Individuals employed by the Department of Administrative Services as procurement enterprise staff and employees authorized by other State agencies to purchase goods and services (collectively, “Purchasers”) for the State hold positions of trust and are required to act in the best interests of the State. Each Purchaser shall avoid any activity that impairs or would reasonably appear to impair the ability to perform their duties with independence and objectivity.
Purchasers are required to complete this form annually to help prevent potential conflicts of interest.
Prior to submission, please print a copy of this completed form with electronic signature for your records and internal distribution as needed.
Avoiding Even the Appearance of Impropriety
- Purchasers shall not, by their conduct, provide a reasonable basis for the impression that any person can improperly influence them or unduly enjoy their favor in the performance of their duties, or that they are affected by the kinship, rank, position, or influence of any party or person in the performance of their duties.
- Purchasers shall not use, or attempt to use, their position to secure unwarranted privileges or exemptions for themselves or others.
- Purchasers are strictly prohibited from accepting a bribe or succumbing to other attempts to exert undue influence with respect to the Purchaser’s job responsibilities.
Compliance with Law, Policies and Procedures
Purchasers shall comply with:
- the provisions of chapters 8A, 26, 68B of the Code of Iowa and all other applicable procurement laws, rules and policies in performing their procurement responsibilities, including
- the Conflict of Interest and Related Party Policy (“Policy”) below, and
- the Department of Administrative Services Central Procurement Bureau Policy and Procedures Manual.
In the event of a conflict between policy and applicable law, the applicable law shall take precedence.
Conflicts of Interest
Generally, a conflict of interest exists whenever a person serving the public may gain a private advantage, financial or otherwise, through their public capacity, or when there is otherwise a conflict between the public obligations and the private interests of the public employee. An individual may have a conflict of interest even though a private advantage was not sought or actually gained.
Iowa Code Chapter 68B – Government Ethics and Lobbying Act
Iowa Code sections 68B.2A and 68B.3 have requirements pursuant to Purchasers.
- Iowa Code section 68B.2A (Prohibited outside employment and activities – conflicts of interest) prohibits State employees from engaging in outside employment or activities which may conflict with the employee’s official duties and responsibilities. The statute contains a list of things that are deemed to be unacceptable conflicts of interest. However, State employees should keep in mind that the list is not exhaustive; unacceptable conflicts of interest exist in other situations.
- Iowa Code section 68B.3 (When public bids required — disclosure of income from other sales) prohibits a State employee from selling goods or services to a State agency if the sale is in excess of $2,000.00, in any one occurrence, unless the sale is made after public notice and a competitive bidding process. Even if the sale is permissible, the State employee must disclose the sale by filing a report with the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board within twenty days of the sale. These provisions apply to all transactions, including those involving a Targeted Small Business in which an employee has a Direct or Indirect Financial Interest or Other Interest.
A Purchaser has a “Direct or Indirect Financial Interest” in a current or prospective supplier or service provider of the State if the Purchaser has an ownership or other financial interest in the supplier or service provider; or any relationship, contractual or otherwise, with the supplier or service provider which could result in a monetary or non-monetary gain to a Purchaser from a transaction between the supplier or service provider and the State. “Other Interests” of a Purchaser means serving as a compensated or uncompensated director, officer, consultant, broker, agent, employee or representative of any business entity proposing to conduct business with the State.
Purchases from Related Parties
Conflicts of interest include purchases from Related Parties. In the course of their duties as State employees, Purchasers shall not knowingly solicit or acquire goods or services from a Related Party. A supplier or service provider in a proposed procurement with the State is a Related Party of a Purchaser conducting the procurement if the Purchaser:
- Has any Direct or Indirect Financial Interest or Other Interest, as such terms are defined above, in the supplier or service provider; or
- Controls or actively influences the activities of the supplier or service provider, or has an immediate family member who owns or controls or actively influences the activities of the supplier or service provider. For purposes of this Policy, “immediate family member” includes a spouse, domestic partner, direct descendant, direct ascendant (parent, grandparent, great-grandparent, etc.), sibling, dependent, or member of household; or
- Has an immediate family member who is employed by the supplier or service provider in a management or sales capacity.
Assignment of Projects Involving a Related Party Conflict of Interest
- If a procurement project would involve a DAS Purchaser who has, or potentially may have, a Related Party conflict, the staff member shall report this to the DAS Chief Procurement Officer who, in turn, will assign the procurement project to a Purchaser not having a Related Party conflict.
- If a procurement project would involve a Purchaser from another State agency who has, or potentially may have, a Related Party conflict, the Purchaser shall report this to its agency management. The agency shall then assign the procurement project to a staff member who does not have a Related Party conflict. If the agency fails to do so, the Purchaser shall contact the DAS Chief ProcurementOfficer.
If a Related Party issue involving a Purchaser is discovered either during the procurement process or after the State has entered into a contract with the Related Party, the matter shall be referred to the DAS Chief Procurement Officer or the Purchaser’s management as described above. The DAS Chief Procurement Officer or Purchaser’s management will review the matter and determine the appropriate response and actions with respect to the Purchaser, the procurement process, and the contract with the Related Party.
If a Purchaser conducts a known Related Party transaction, or fails to disclose a Related Party conflict,
the Purchaser may be subject to discipline up to and including termination.
Disclosing a Real, Apparent, or Potential Conflict of Interest
Purchasers are required to disclose all real, apparent, or potential conflicts of interest for review in three instances:
- Annual Disclosures: At the beginning of each calendar year, or as new reportable interests are obtained or reportable activities occur, Purchasers shall report Direct or Indirect Financial Interests or Other Interests that pose or may pose a real, apparent, or potential conflict of interest via this form to the DAS Chief Procurement Officer.
- Disclosure of Related Parties: At the beginning of each calendar year, Purchasers shall provide written notice of any known Related Party in which they hold a Direct or Indirect Financial Interest or Other Interest via this form to the DAS Chief Procurement Officer.
- Situational Disclosures: Purchasers shall report to the Purchaser’s management any Direct or Indirect Financial Interest or Other Interest that may pose a conflict of interest under this Policy as they arise. Such situational disclosures shall be made as soon as practicable after the individual learns of the real, apparent or potential conflict of interest. When a disclosure is made under this Policy, the actual, apparent, or potential conflict of interest will be reviewed by the Purchaser’s management. If a conflict of interest is found to exist, appropriate steps shall be taken by the parties to reduce or eliminate the conflict of interest.