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Outside Activities

Outside Activities

Most employees may earn outside income and engage in outside activities, subject to the Federal conflict of interest statutes and the Standards of Ethical Conduct regulations. Generally, employees may engage in any activities - paid or volunteer - as long as the activities do not require the employee to disqualify him or herself from duties central to his or her position within the Department or if it is contrary to HUD policy or regulation. In addition, in most circumstances, employees may not accept pay (including travel reimbursement) for teaching speaking, or writing related to the employee's duties.

1. What activities are prohibited for HUD employees?  The Federal Criminal Conflict of Interest Statutes, the Government-wide Standards of Ethical Conduct regulation, and HUD’s Supplemental Standards of Ethical Conduct regulation prohibit Department employees from engaging in the following:

a. Employment that would create a conflict of interest with your official duties;

b. Employment with a business related to real estate or manufactured housing including, but not limited to: real estate brokerage, management and sales; architecture; engineering, mortgage lending; property insurance; appraisal services; construction or construction financing; land planning; or real estate development;

c. The operation or management of investment properties to the extent that it rises to the level of a real estate-related business.
d. Employment with a person or entity who registered as a lobbyist or lobbyist organization pursuant to 2 U.S.C. 1603(a) and engages in lobbying activity concerning the Department;

e. Employment as an officer or director with a Department-approved mortgagee, a lending institution, or an organization that services securities for the Department; or

f. Employment with the Federal Home Loan Bank System, or any affiliate thereof.

            Note: These restrictions do not prohibit a HUD employee from serving as an officer or as a member of the board of directors of a Federal credit union, or a cooperative, condominium association or homeowners association for a housing project that is not subject to regulation by the Department or, if so regulated, in which the employee personally resides.

2. What activities require prior written approval?  To avoid conflicts of interest with their official duties, HUD’s Supplemental Standards of Ethical Conduct regulation requires Department employees to obtain prior written approval from a HUD ethics official before working as a paid employee or unpaid volunteer in any of the following four capacities:

a. As an officer, director, trustee, general partner, or in any other position of authority with a prohibited source, as defined at 5 C.F.R. 2635.203(d);

b. With a State or local government;

c. In the same professional field as the employee’s official position; or

d. As a real estate agent in relation to purchasing or selling a single family property for use as the employee’s primary residence, or the primary residence of the employees immediate family member.

3. Special guidelines for service in state and local government.  It is HUD’s policy that service on planning or zoning commissions is presumed to create an appearance of a conflict of interest with an employee’s official duties and will generally not be permitted.

4. What actions are prohibited during all outside activities?

a. Conducting outside activities on official time
b. Using Government resources for outside activity
c. Using Government title, position, or authority in connection with outside activity
d. Using non-public information that comes to by virtue of HUD employment for unauthorized purposes.