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Policy on Gifts & Gratuities

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Policy on Gifts & Gratuities

1.  Purpose

This policy establishes the Fermi Research Alliance, LLC (FRA) standards and guidelines for gifts and gratuities. 

 

This policy is not a contract and is not intended to create any obligations on FRA. This policy may be terminated or changed by FRA at any time, with or without notice.

 

2.  Scope

The scope of this policy includes all FRA activities to manage and operate the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory under the prime contract with the Department of Energy (DOE).

 

3.  Applicability

This policy applies to all FRA employees.

 

4.  Effective Date and Date Reviewed/Updated

This policy went into effect on October 31, 2019, its first update was effective on September 21, 2022, and the current update was effective on September 13, 2023.

 

5.  Policy

FRA employees must conduct themselves with honesty, integrity, high ethical standards, and follow the law at all times – this includes avoiding an actual or apparent conflict of interest. Gifts and gratuities – whether offered or received – can create actual or apparent conflicts of interest that must be avoided.  FRA employees are encouraged and welcome to reach out to the Office of General Counsel (ogc@fnal.gov) with any questions regarding this policy.  FRA employees should report any violation of this policy through any of the established concern reporting channels, including the Office of General Counsel.

a.      Prohibition on Solicitation or Acceptance of Gifts, Gratuities, or Special Favors

FRA employees shall not solicit or accept any gift, gratuity, or special favor from people or organizations that might affect or appear to affect the FRA employee’s judgment in discharging their duties, with the limited exceptions listed below. This applies to gifts, gratuities, or special favors from U.S., state, and foreign government employees (including Department of Energy employees), vendors, and subcontractors that FRA is doing business with or proposing to do business within accomplishing work under the FRA Prime Contract.

Limited Exceptions

The following may be accepted under this Policy:

b.    Prohibition on Giving, Offering, or Promising Anything of Value – Businesses and Vendors

FRA employees shall not directly or indirectly give, offer, or promise anything of value to people or organizations doing business with or seeking to do business with FRA, with the limited exceptions listed below.

Limited Exceptions

The following may be provided by FRA employees under this Policy:

c.     Prohibition on Giving, Offering, or Promising Anything of Value – Government Employees

FRA employees shall not directly or indirectly give, offer, or promise anything of value to U.S. and foreign government employees (including DOE employees), with the limited exceptions listed below.

Limited Exceptions

The following may be provided to government employees under this Policy:

Notwithstanding any exception above, FRA employees are prohibited from offering anything of value to U.S. and foreign government employees to influence or in exchange for performance of any official action.

Before giving gifts on behalf of FRA to foreign governments or agencies, FRA employees must consult with the Office of General Counsel for guidance.

 

FRA must report situations when it has reasonable grounds to believe that a gratuity violation and violation of this Policy on Gifts and Gratuities may have occurred.  FRA also must cooperate fully with any federal agency investigation of a possible violation.

 

6.  Definitions

Gift means any gratuity, favor, discount, entertainment, hospitality, loan, forbearance, or other item having monetary value. It includes services as well as gifts of training, transportation, local travel, lodgings and meals, whether provided in-kind, by purchase of a ticket, payment in advance, or reimbursement after the expense has been incurred. The term excludes the following:

(1) Modest items of food and non-alcoholic refreshments, such as soft drinks, coffee and donuts, offered other than as part of a meal;

(2) Greeting cards and items with little intrinsic value, such as plaques, certificates, and trophies, which are intended primarily for presentation.

 

7.  Responsibilities

The Office of General Counsel is responsible for maintaining this policy, ensuring lab-wide compliance, and resolving questions and issues relating to gifts and gratuities.

 

FRA employees are responsible for adhering to this policy.  FRA employees should submit any questions regarding this policy to the Office of General Counsel (ogc@fnal.gov).  FRA employees are responsible for reporting violations of this policy. 

 

8.  Authorities

Prime Contract DE-AC02-07CH11359 Clause I.8A

Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 52.203-13

5 CFR §2635.202 through 205

 

9.  Owner

The General Counsel is the owner of this policy.

 

10.  Review Cycle

This policy shall be reviewed every three years.

 

11.  Communication Plan

The Office of General Counsel will communicate this policy to all employees through posting on the policies website, and annual training will be required as part of the annual Fermilab Code of Business Ethics and Conduct training. The General Counsel is responsible for the communication of this policy.