To ensure the appropriate use of electronic communications systems, all employees shall use the county’s software and hardware for county approved purposes only.

The county will allow only county authorized software to be stored or executed on its computers. Recognition is given to the unique needs of particular departments and programs; however the software must be approved for compatibility by the Information Technology (IT) Department prior to installation. Software installed with the intention of protecting devices and peripherals, such as anti-virus software, shall not be removed or disabled unless authorized by the IT Department.

All software license agreements and copyright laws shall be adhered to and copies of license agreements provided to the IT Department.

Electronic Mail, Social Networking & Internet
Electronic mail, social networking, and internet access must be used in a manner that maintains public trust and confidence in the county organization. Electronic mail and internet access are provided for the county’s official public business.

Examples of appropriate use of the email, social networking, and internet are as follows:
  • Assessing Databases: Assessing databases and files to obtain work-related referenced material or to conduct work related research.
  • Expediting Administrative Duties: Expediting administrative duties in direct support of work-related functions.
  • Facilitating Communications. Facilitating communications and transfers of documents between employees, citizens and others concerned with county business.
  • Personal Use: As with telephones, electronic mail and internet access are intended for fast and efficient communications. However, personal use of electronic mail, social networking, and internet should be limited in the same manner as local telephone calls so as not to interfere with the employee’s duties. 
    • Any opinions stated on personal emails or social networking sites will be clearly marked as personal opinions and not necessarily the opinion of Gunnison County. Personal use allowed on electronic communications systems will be determined by the appropriate department head or elected official.
  • Professional Development: Communicating with individuals or professional organizations regarding professional and career development.
Use Violations
No person shall use county communications systems to:
  • Download copyrighted music, send, or receive copyrighted materials, trade secrets, proprietary financial information, or similar materials without prior consent.
  • Engage in any activities that could cause congestion and disruption of networks and systems, such as sending and forwarding chain letters, joining news subscription services, listening to music over the internet, and sending or receiving graphic or animation files not directly related to county business.
  • Intentionally disrupt network or system use by others, either by introducing worms, viruses, or by other means.
  • Promote any commercial venture, political campaign, or personal purpose.
  • Raise funds or engage in public relations activities that are not directly related to county business.
  • Transmit or, with foreknowledge, receive pornographic, racist, sexist, or harassing material.
  • Violate any municipal, county, state, or federal law or regulation.
Privacy & Security
Employees should have no expectation of privacy regarding the use of electronic media. Any information or data contained in any electronic system owned by the county is available to the county at all times and may be subject to audit, intercept, access, and disclosure for reasonable purposes, including discipline by the county. 

Public Record
Correspondence of an employee in the form of electronic mail and/or social networking may be a public record under the public records law, and may be subject to public inspection under C.R.S. 24-72-203 and the policies of the county. 

The county reserves the right to implement the use of electronic tools that monitor and / or restrict the transmission of email and use of the Internet. Further, the use of passwords for security does not guarantee confidentiality. No password may be used that is unknown to the employee’s supervisor or the IT Department. Notwithstanding the county’s right to retrieve and read any electronic communication messages, such messages should be treated as confidential by other employees and accessed only by the intended recipient.

Employees may not retrieve or read any electronic communication messages that are not sent to them unless authorized to do so. Employees shall not use a code, address a file, or retrieve any stored information of other users, unless authorized to do so.