Effective: July 16, 2019
Last Reviewed: December 27, 2022
Last Revision: March 15, 2023

1. Conflict of Interest.  A conflict of interest generally includes any situation in which a Trustee’s official decision, action, participation, recommendation or influence could result in a private benefit to, or adversely affect the private interests of, the Trustee, members of the Trustee’s household or any entity in which the Trustee and/or any member of the Trustee’s household has a significant ownership or other beneficial interest. See generally I.C. § 74-403(4). The following are examples of potential conflict of interest situations:

  1. The Board is considering a contract, transaction, or policy that affects the economic interests of a Trustee or a Trustee’s immediate family member.
  2. The Board is considering employing a Trustee’s spouse or other relative by blood or marriage within the second degree.
  3. A Trustee has access to confidential information that the Trustee could use for personal gain.
  4. A Trustee has a financial relationship with a College vendor or contractor, which has not been disclosed to the Board.
  5. A vendor or contractor offers a gift to a Trustee.
  6. Any other situation where a Trustee’s private interests diverge from the best interests of the College.

Except as provided below, pursuant to Idaho Code § 33-507 which applies to Trustees by virtue of Idaho Code § 33-2106, a Trustee may not have a pecuniary interest, directly or indirectly, in any contract or other transaction pertaining to the maintenance or conduct of the College nor may a Trustee accept any reward or compensation for services rendered as a Trustee. The Board may accept and award contracts involving the College to a business in which a Trustee or person related to the Trustee by blood or marriage within the second degree has a direct or indirect interest provided that: 

  1. the contract is competitively bid and the Trustee or his relative submits the low bid
  2. neither the Trustee nor his relative takes any part in the preparation of the contract or bid specifications and the Trustee takes no part in voting on or approving the contract or bid specifications
  3. the Trustee makes full disclosure, in writing, to all members of the Board of his/her interest or that of his/her relative and of his/her or his/her relative’s intention to bid on the contract 
  4. and neither the Trustee nor his/her relative has violated any provision of Idaho law pertaining to competitive bidding or improper solicitation of business.

“Related by blood or marriage within the second degree” includes the Trustee’s or the Trustee’s spouse’s parents, grandparents, siblings, children and grandchildren. 

Pursuant to Idaho Code § 33-507, the receiving, soliciting or acceptance of monies of the College for deposit in any bank or trust company, or the lending of money by any bank or trust company to the College, shall not be deemed to be a contract pertaining to the maintenance or conduct of the College within the meaning of this policy; nor shall the payment by the Board of compensation to any bank or trust company, for services rendered in the transaction of any banking business with the Board be deemed the payment of any reward or compensation to any officer or director of any such bank or trust company within the meaning of this policy. 

Trustees may not serve concurrently as a paid employee of the College, receive gifts in excess of any gift limitations specified by Idaho Code or College policy or accept honoraria for speeches or attendance at events as a Trustee of the College. Similarly, spouses of any Trustee may not be employed by the College. When any relative of a Trustee or a Trustee’s spouse related by blood or marriage within the second degree is considered for employment by the College, the Trustee should abstain from voting on the employment decision and should be absent from the meeting while any such employment is being considered and determined. 

2. Disclosure of Conflict/Abstention. Pursuant to Idaho Code § 74-404, a Trustee should not knowingly receive confidential information regarding, participate in any discussion, or take any action concerning any matter where he/she has a conflict of interest and has failed to disclose the conflict. The disclosure of a conflict of interest should be in writing or otherwise fully disclosed in the Board minutes. Disclosure of a conflict does not affect the Trustee’s authority to be counted for purposes of determining a quorum and to debate and to vote on the matter, unless the Trustee requests to be excused from debate and voting at his/her discretion. In order to determine whether a conflict of interest exists relative to any matter within the scope of the Trustee’s official functions, the Trustee or the Board may seek legal advice from the College’s attorney, the Attorney General or from independent counsel.

3. Board Consideration. The remaining non-interested members of the Board shall consider and respond to any disclosed conflict of interest situation consistent with this Policy and Idaho Code. The interested Trustee may be excluded from the deliberations.

4. Application. This Policy applies during the Trustee’s term on the Board. Further, this Policy should apply to any discussion, recommendation, vote, participation, or other action that the interested Trustee takes in his/her official capacity, whether on the Board as a whole, through participation on any committee, or through any individual action that the Trustee takes in his/her official capacity.

5. Other Laws. Idaho statutes impose additional requirements on public officials, including Trustees, to ensure that they act in the utmost good faith and that they do not misuse their official position. See, e.g., I.C. § 18-1351 et seq.; I.C. § 74-401 et seq.; and I.C. § 74-501 et seq., links to which are provided below. Trustees should be familiar with and comply with these additional laws.

6. Training. Trustees shall receive training concerning conflicts of interests, this Policy, and applicable laws when they are appointed to the Board, and periodically as necessary thereafter.