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Resources and Reports

CWUP 2-50-090 Personal Communication Device

(1) Introduction

Central Washington University is committed to providing essential, business-related tools and services to its faculty and staff in a manner which promotes the proper stewardship of assets; complies with IRS, federal, state and university regulatory requirements; establishes a framework for consistent decision-making; and reduces or eliminates administrative costs whenever possible. Cellular phones and cellular data services offer efficiency for University employees having legitimate business needs for this technology. This policy applies to wireless devices used for voice communication. Wireless devices used for text, data, or e-mail communication are not addressed by this policy unless such devices are also used for voice communication.

(2) Purchase and Use of a Personal Communication Device for University Business

When it is more efficient or when official business cannot be accommodated by the use of a landline telephone, pager, or other communication device, use of a personal communication device is permitted. In such circumstances, appointing authorities and supervisors will determine the communication needs of their employees.

The use of a personal communication device by an employee for University business is for the benefit of the University in the furtherance of its mission, not for the convenience of the employee. A personal communication device will be provided only to an employee who is asked by his or her supervisor to carry such a device. An employee may not self-determine that a device is required.

A "valid business need" is defined as follows:

The need to be readily accessible for contact with the public or with university faculty, staff, or students, for required or essential business communication needs due to:

1. Frequent travel, working at a remote location, etc.

2. The need to receive or initiate communication in emergency situations

3. The need to be accessible and available during working hours (when away from assigned land-line telephone) or during non-business hours by electronic means at all times.

4. Departments have three options when requiring an employee to carry a personal communication device in order to perform his/her duties:

a. Assign a University-owned device.
b. Authorize an allowance to cover the costs related to the employee's purchase of a personal access plan and personal communication device to utilize that device for both personal and business purposes.
c. Authorize reimbursement for employees who have occasional minimal use of a personal communication device for business purposes.

(3) Purchase and Use of a Personal Communication Device funded by Grants or Contracts

Personal communication devices may be purchased and used for a sponsored project/grant or contract when the sponsored project/grant or contract language stipulates that the principle investigators, other research personnel, or instrumentation, need such connectivity devices to carrying out the sponsored project/grant or contract requirements. In this case, the need for a communication device must be documented in the grant proposal and budget justification during the grant submission process, and the sponsor must approve (or not specifically disapprove) the expense as a direct charge on the grant. The principal investigator must ensure that monthly reoccurring charges are clearly identified as part of the initial budget request and must document usage during performance of the project/grant or contract.

(4) Applicable laws and ordinances

Employees must observe applicable laws or ordinances regarding the use of personal communication devices while driving.

See CWUR 3-20-122 (Personal Communication Device) for procedures related to purchase and use of personal communication devices for University business or sponsored project/grant or contract purposes.

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