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UW guidelines for campaign and lobbying activities

February 16, 2017

With a new presidential administration and Congress in Washington, D.C., and the budget process underway in Madison, employees are reminded to consult campus and UW System guidelines on political campaign activity and lobbying.

Per UW System policy, political campaign activities are restricted by Board of Regents policy and state law in three ways: (1) employees may not engage in political campaign activities, including solicitation of signatures for petitions, during work time or in their work unit; (2) they may not use university resources to engage in political campaign activities at any time; and (3) they may not solicit contributions or services for a political purpose from other university employees while they are engaged in their official duties.

While System policy primarily addresses political campaign activity, the policy also addresses political activity that is closely related to campaign activity. Such political activity can extend beyond an election period.

When engaging in political activity outside the workplace, employees are reminded that they may not use UW–Madison or UW System logos or trademarks in literature, signs or other political or campaign materials.

As a reminder, only the chancellor, vice chancellors, directors of federal and state relations, deans, and their designees are authorized to make official lobbying contacts on behalf of the university.

If you have a concern about a federal or state policy change that affects your work area or are interested in ways to engage on a particular topic, please contact University Relations, Ben Miller, assistant vice chancellor for government and corporate affairs, at

More information can be found at the links below.

UW System memo on political activities

Federal relations lobbying guidelines

Guidance for UW–Madison employees on lobbying activities