[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Selectmen of the Town of Islesboro 7-14-2004. Amendments noted where applicable.]Attachment 1 - Acknowledgment of E-Mail and Internet Policy
Electronic mail, internet and telecommunication access are resources made available to Town employees and certain Town officials to communicate with each other, other governmental entities, companies and individuals for the conduct of business and the benefit of the Town of Islesboro.
The Town of Islesboro's electronic mail system (e-mail) and Internet connection are designed to facilitate any Town business communication by, between and among employees, Town officials and other business associates for messages or memoranda. Since no computer system is completely secure, the e-mail system is not intended to transmit sensitive materials, such as personnel decisions and other similar information which may be more appropriately communicated by written memorandum or personal conversation.
The e-mail system is Town property and intended for Town business. It must be understood that use of this system is a privilege, which may be limited or removed if the privilege is abused at any time or for any reason, at the sole discretion of the Town of Islesboro. The system is not to be used for personal gain or to support or advocate for non-Town-related activities or business purposes. All data and other electronic messages within this system are the property of the Town of Islesboro. Generally speaking, e-mail messages are public records and subject to Freedom of Access Act and record retention requirements.
In addition, the Town, through its managers and supervisors, reserves the right to review the contents of employees' e-mail communications when necessary for Town business or performance purposes. Employees may not intentionally intercept, eavesdrop, record, read, alter, or receive other persons' e-mail messages without proper authorization.
The Town of Islesboro owns and administers the necessary software and licenses to provide access to e-mail and Internet services. Employees and Town officials may not rent, copy or loan the software or its documentation. The Town has invested much time and money to secure its electronic systems from intrusion and harmful viruses. Therefore, employees and Town officials may not provide alternative software to access the system. Employees and Town officials may be held responsible for any damages caused by using unauthorized software or viruses that have been introduced into the Town system. All department heads are responsible for the implementation of and adherence to this policy within their departments.
General information on passwords. While you may have a confidential password, users should be aware that this does not mean that the system is for personal confidential communication, nor does it suggest that e-mail is the property right of the employee or Town official. The use of the e-mail system is for Town business. Passwords should be periodically changed to ensure security of the e-mail system. Users should not share their passwords with anyone else, other than as his or her supervisor may require.
Internet use. The Internet provides the Town with significant access and dissemination of information to individuals outside of the Town. The use of the Internet system for access and dissemination is intended to serve Town business. Like all e-mail messages, Internet messages are capable of being forwarded without the express permission of the original author. Internet messages are also routinely passed through routers before they reach their final destination. A message is "touched" many times before it gets to its recipient, and the message author should be aware of this. Therefore, users must use caution in the transmission and dissemination of messages outside of the Town and must comply with all state and federal laws.
Prohibited uses. The Town's e-mail and Internet systems may be used only for lawful purposes. When sending e-mail messages, appropriateness and good judgment should be used. The following are examples (but are not limited to this list) of Internet and e-mail uses which are prohibited:
Communications that in any way may be construed by others as disruptive, offensive, abusive, or threatening.
Communications of sexually explicit images or messages or that constitute child pornography.
Communications that contain ethnic slurs, racial epithets, or anything that may be construed as harassment or disparagement of others based on race, national origin, sex, age, disability or religious beliefs.
Solicitation for commercial ventures, religious or political causes, outside organizations, or other non-job-related solicitations.
Access to Internet resources, including websites and news groups, that are inappropriate in a business setting.
Communications that encourage conduct that would constitute a criminal offense or give rise to civil liability.
Any other use that may compromise the integrity of the Town of Islesboro and its business in any way.
Retention of e-mail. E-mail messages should be retained pursuant to the Maine State Archives' record retention schedules. As such, these e-mail messages are similar to printed communication and should be written and retained with the same care. Each department head is responsible for establishing and maintaining department retention schedules for the information communicated through the e-mail system.
Applicability to employees, part-time employees, Town officials, contractors, and other users. This Internet and e-mail policy applies to all employees, Town officials, contractors, part-time employees, volunteers, and other individuals who are provided access to the Town's system. Third parties should only be provided access to the e-mail system as necessary for their business purpose with the Town and only if they abide by all applicable rules.
Employee termination, leave of absence, vacation, and other. Employees who leave employment with the Town of Islesboro have no right to the contents of their e-mail messages and are not allowed access to the e-mail system. Supervisors or management may access an employee's e-mail if employees are on leave of absence, vacation, sick leave or otherwise absent and it is necessary for the Town's business purposes.
Penalties. The misuse of the Internet or e-mail privileges may be considered sufficient cause for discipline, up to and including discharge of employment, in accordance with the Town of Islesboro's Personnel Policy and/or other applicable rules or laws. In addition, in the event of suspected, alleged or actual illegal activity, the Town may notify or cooperate with applicable law enforcement authorities for potential civil or criminal investigation or prosecution.
The Town may require employees and Town officials to read and accept the terms of this policy before making electronic systems available.