Policy Manual

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    Policy No.: 16-08 Effective: 01/01/2016
    Revision No.: Review Date: xx/xx/xx
    Communications Policies

    Purpose:

    To establish a uniform process under which all departments communicate with the media, elected officials, County staff and the public. 
     
    Policy:
    It is the policy of Alachua County to adhere to these procedures in order to ensure uniform, accurate, timely information dissemination to citizens, elected officials, County staff and the media.    
    Procedures:
    1.      Media Contact
     
    a.       When the media contacts an Alachua County employee, they must email the County Manager, their Deputy or Assistant County Manager and the Communications & Legislative Affairs Director with a brief summary of the contact.  Other interested staff, such as Legal or Risk, may also need to be included, depending on the subject of the contact.
     
    2.      Elected Officials Contact
     
    a.       When sending information to one Commissioner, send it to all Commissioners (a/k/a the Golden Rule) and copy the County Manager, the Deputy or Assistant County Manager, the County Attorney and the Department Director.
     
    b.      If a Commissioner contacts staff or is requesting a major report, contact the County Manager for further direction.
     
    3.      County-Wide Email
     
    a.       The County email system shall not be used to solicit help or donations for charitable organizations or for County staff without the prior approval of the County Manager. 
     
    b.      When sending County-wide or other large group email, place the group in the BCC field to decrease “Reply All” emails.
     
    c.       Use hyperlinks instead of attachments to reduce the amount of data stored on County servers.
     
    d.      Email signatures shall only include employee’s names, titles and contact information in a standardized font, size and color.  Font choices shall reflect professionalism; avoid fonts that are whimsical or difficult to read.  Disclaimers required by law or policy are permitted to be placed below the signature.  With prior approval from the Communication’s Office, additional tag line information may be included (i.e. approved County logo, department Facebook/Twitter links). 
     
    4.      Correspondence
     
    a.       Correspondence (including letters, memorandums and emails) shall utilize professional grammar and a standardized format, font, size and color.  Font choices shall reflect professionalism; avoid fonts that are whimsical or difficult to read.  All correspondence shall be spell checked before distribution.
     
                                                                  i.      When communicating with Local, State and Federal Elected Officials, copy the County Manager, County Attorney, Deputy/Assistant County Manager, Communications and Legislative Affairs Director, and any other pertinent staff.
     
                                                                ii.      Communications threating litigation or lawsuit must be sent to the County Manager and County Attorney immediately. 
     
                                                              iii.      Communications noticing dangerous situations or threatening conditions must be sent to the County Manager, County Attorney, Deputy/Assistant County Manager, Risk Management and the appropriate emergency service provider.
     
    b.      All print or digital documents (i.e. bookmarks, pamphlets, annual reports, and videos) shall be reviewed and approved by the Communications Office with a Print Approval Form.
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Section Two - Standards of Conduct
Section Three - Recruitment and Selection
Section Four - Employment and Employee Job Performance
Section Five - Compensation and Benefits
Section Six - Work Environment
Section Seven - Leaves of Absence
Section Eight - Separation
Section Nine - Discipline and Appeals