CITY OF HOUSTON - Mayor's Policy

M.P. No: 503.00

Subject: Conduct: Personal Telephone Calls and Mail

Effective Date: February 14, 1985

    1. It is the policy of the City of Houston that telephone and mail facilities shall be available during working hours to ensure effective communication between City offices and departments and to facilitate a maximum level of delivery of services to the citizens of the City of Houston. Accordingly, employees should refrain from using City facilities for personal phone calls or personal mail whenever possible.
    1. Policy Statement
    1. Personal calls tie up the City's lines and make it difficult for business communications to be completed. Since much of the City's business is conducted on the telephone, it is imperative that lines be kept as free as possible so as not to interrupt the daily flow of business. Because the City of Houston's primary responsibility is the delivery of City services, use of the City's telepheon lines should be confined to business related calls. Personal calls should be limited to those which are absolutely necessary and should be as brief as possible. This restriction on the use of telephones also applies to making unecessary personal calls to fellow employees in the City.
    2. Incoming personal calls for employees should be discouraged but are recognized as being necessary from time to time.
    3. When necessity requires that an employee make a personal long distance call, the call should be placed through the telephone comany operator and charged to the individual's home number, or placed collect.
    4. In order to avoid adding to the increaing volume of mail, employees should noy use the City of Houston's address in receiving personal mail. Similarly, City stationary should not be used for personal correspondence because any communication sent out on such stationary might be construced as, or otherwise considered, an official communication.
    1. All employees through the Department/Division Director shall comply from policy date forward.
    1. Policy exceptions and/or violations should be brought to the attention of the Department/Division Director for review and recommended course of action.
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