Federal Lobbying

IU Federal Official Contact Policy


Indiana University sets forth its policy on contacts with and visits by congressional officials and staff and certain federal government officials within agencies in order to facilitate compliance with federal laws and congressional rules and to enhance coordination of institutional priorities and efforts.

This policy is not intended to limit the personal rights of those in the university community (faculty, staff, and students) to contact and advocate with federal officials for their personal beliefs and issues. Nor is it directed toward those contacts made on behalf of their professional societies as long as that representation is not in the name of Indiana University.

Several recent changes in the Lobbying Disclosure Act have altered the respective rules of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate and impact Indiana University activities and related reporting requirements. This policy along with other educational efforts is aimed at ensuring that all those who can reasonably be expected to engage in contacts with federal officials and agencies are provided with current information about these laws and rules.

Types of Contacts

Personal Contacts: Personal contacts setting forth personal beliefs or issues to federal elected or appointed officials or staffs must be made in the name of the individual making the contact and shall in no way imply that the contact is being made on behalf of the university. University letterhead shall not be used for personal contacts, and no personal messages shall be sent from university e-mail accounts.

Professional Contacts: Professional contacts with federal elected or appointed officials or staffs must be made on behalf of the professional society and not on behalf of the university. It is appropriate to indicate your affiliation with Indiana University, but it should be clearly evident that you are not representing the university but rather are representing the professional society of which you are a member. University letterhead shall not be used for professional society contacts, and any reference to affiliation with the university should be made only as an aid to identify the individual.

Official University Contacts: The University President, University Vice Presidents, Chancellors, and Deans are authorized to represent Indiana University with covered officials as defined by the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007, Public Law 110-81. If other individuals have reason to be included on this list of authorized university representatives, this authorization must be approved in writing by the Office of the Vice President for Public Affairs and Government Relations. For purposes of this policy, the list of covered officials as defined in Public Law 110-81 includes elected Members of Congress and congressional staff; White House staff; and all Schedule C employees (political appointees) in federal agencies. All official university contacts with covered federal elected or appointed officials or staff shall be coordinated through the Office of Federal Relations in the Office of the Vice President of Public Affairs and Government Relations.