For UTSA Faculty and Staff: Your rights and responsibilities in connection with political and electoral activities

As employees of an agency of the state of Texas, all UTSA faculty and staff have certain rights and responsibilities when it comes to engaging in political and electoral activities. It is important to review UTSA’s Handbook of Operating Procedures, UT System Policy, and the relevant laws that apply to you as a UTSA employee, including, without limitation, the following:  

  • University employees cannot use public money, official authority, work time or other state resources (letterhead, email, telephones) in support of a campaign or candidate and cannot coerce or restrict lawful contributions to a campaign or candidate.
  • Unless expressly authorized by UTSA, university employees cannot lobby elected officials, their offices/staff, and/or political candidates.
  • University employees can support or oppose a campaign or candidate on his or her own time and contribute personal funds in his or her private capacity.
  • Under Texas Education Code Section 51.9315(f) protected speech (including political speech) can take place in the university’s common outdoor areas subject to time, place and manner restrictions and without disrupting university operations. University employees can use UTSA's common outdoor areas for these purposes as long as they do so on their own time and otherwise abide by the aforementioned restrictions. 

Please note that violation of these or other applicable laws, rules and regulations may lead to discipline, up to and including termination of employment.

UTSA’s Office of Government Relations (within the Division of University Relations) serves as the primary institutional point of contact with all local, state and federal elected officials and their respective staff. If, in your capacity as an employee of UTSA, you wish or have the need to contact any of these officials or their staff, please reach out to Albert Carrisalez or Jason Hassay in Government Relations for assistance and guidance.

For more information or questions regarding university policies, please refer to UTSA’s Handbook of Operating Procedures or contact Jason King in Legal Affairs.