Prohibited Activities by Public Servants—State Law


  1. As consideration for the recipient's decision, opinion, recommendation, vote, or other exercise of discretion as a public servant;
  2. As consideration for a violation of a duty imposed by law on a public servant; or
  3. That is a political contribution as defined by Election Code Title 15 or an expenditure made and reported in accordance with Government Code Chapter 305 (regarding registration of lobbyists), if the benefit was offered, conferred, solicited, accepted, or agreed to pursuant to an express agreement to take or withhold a specific exercise of official discretion, if such exercise of official discretion would not have been taken or withheld but for the benefit.

Illegal Gifts


  1. A fee prescribed by law to be received by a public servant or any other benefit to which the public servant is lawfully entitled or for which the public servant gives legitimate consideration in a capacity other than as a public servant;
  2. A gift or other benefit conferred on account of kinship or a personal, professional, or business relationship independent of the official status of the recipient;
  3. A benefit to a public servant required to file a statement under Government Code Chapter 572 or a report under Election Code Title 15 that is derived from a function in honor or appreciation of the recipient if:
    1. The benefit and the source of any benefit in excess of $50 is reported in the statement; and
    2. The benefit is used solely to defray the expenses that accrue in the performance of duties or activities in connection with the office which are nonreimbursable by the state or political subdivision;
  4. A political contribution as defined by Election Code Title 15;
  5. An item with a value of less than $50, excluding cash or a negotiable instrument as described by Business and Commerce Code 3.104;
  6. An item issued by a governmental entity that allows the use of property or facilities owned, leased, or operated by the governmental entity; or
  7. Food, lodging, transportation, or entertainment accepted as a guest and, if the donee is required by law to report those items, reported by the donee in accordance with that law.

Honoraria and Expenses

Abuse of Official Capacity

  1. An agreement under which the public servant holds the property;
  2. A contract of employment or oath of office of a public servant;
  3. A law, including provisions of the General Appropriations Act specifically relating to government property, that prescribes the manner of custody or disposition of the property; or
  4. A limited purpose for which the property is delivered or received.

Misuse of Official Information

  1. Acquires or aids another to acquire a pecuniary interest in any property, transaction, or enterprise that may be affected by the information;
  2. Speculates or aids another to speculate on the basis of the information; or
  3. As a public servant, including as a school administrator, coerces another into suppressing or failing to report that information to a law enforcement agency.
  1. The person has access to by means of the person's office or employment; and
  2. Has not been made public.

Holding Civil Office

Note: See also CBB for requirements when federal funds are involved.

Education Service Center, Region 2



DATE ISSUED: 5/20/2019