4.45a Personnel Files - Regulation

Document Type: Regulation
Number: 4.45a
Effective: 05-01-06
Revised: 03-23-12
Legal References: I.C. § 9-340C, I.C. § 50-908



In collecting, maintaining, and disclosing personnel information, the City of Boise makes every effort to protect employees' privacy rights and interests and prevent inappropriate or unnecessary disclosures of information from any employee's file or record. The City of Boise strives to ensure that it handles all personal and job-related information about employees in a secure, confidential, and appropriate fashion. This regulation applies to all City departments and divisions.


There are three categories of personnel files:

A. Official Personnel File
B. Site Based File
C. Benefits File


There shall be only one official personnel file and that file shall be maintained in Human Resources. The following documents shall become part of the official personnel file.

A. Hiring paperwork including employment application and other supporting
documentation as determined necessary by Human Resources
B. Formal disciplinary actions
C. Performance appraisals
D. Improvement plans
E. Compensation changes
F. Change in job title or position
G. Awards, certificates or formal letters of commendation that are related to
the employee’s position with the City
H. Employment related correspondence
I. Problem solving complaints and resolutions
J. Letters of resignation, retirement, or termination
K. Leave of absence requests
L. Separation documents
M. Employee bonus information
N. Certificates and licenses required for the position held
O. Correspondence to employee
P. Complaints and claims that the employee files with federal, state, and local agencies

Ethnic identification forms, I-9 forms, and protected health information shall not be part of the official personnel file and shall be maintained by Human Resources in separate files.


Aside from Human Resources, only individuals with a valid business related need shall have access to the official personnel files such as:

A. Mayor or designee
B. Legal department
C. Current or prospective supervisor of the employee
D. Employee or designee identified in writing
E. Any person authorized by court order or applicable law
F. Hiring committees may have access to applications, resumes and other documents submitted by an applicant for a position. Other information contained in the personnel file may not be accessed by hiring committees. Hiring authorities shall have the obligation to advise hiring committees that any information provided to them in the hiring process is confidential, and that hiring committees have an obligation to not disclose any information they may receive during that process.

An employee may request copies of information in his or her personnel file. When this occurs Human Resources will email an electronic copy of the information to the employee. If this is not possible, Human Resources will make these copies available upon written request from the employee and may charge a fee to reproduce the information in accordance with applicable law.


Except to individuals allowed access as specified above, only the following information may be released to the general public about individual employees:

A. Last name and first initial only
B. Work location
C. Position held
D. Dates of employment
E. Status
F. Gross salary and salary history
G. Classification, pay grade, and step
H. Any other information required by applicable law

All other personnel information relating to an employee or applicant including, but not limited to, information regarding sex, race, marital status, birth date, home address and telephone number, applications, testing and scoring materials, grievances, discipline information, correspondence and performance evaluations, and protected health information, shall not be disclosed to the public without the employee's or applicant's written consent, except as allowed by law.


To ensure that the official personnel files are up-to-date and contain accurate, complete information, employees are expected to notify Human Resources of any changes that need to be made in the following categories:

A. Name,
B. Telephone number,
C. Home address,
D. Marital status,
E. Number of dependents,
F. Beneficiary designations,
G. Scholastic or licensure achievements, or
H. Individual to notify in case of an emergency.


The records contained in an employee’s personnel file are considered an official record and shall not be removed or destroyed from the personnel file until the entire file is destroyed in accordance with the City’s records retention schedule or in accordance with City policies and regulations.


Site files are sometimes also known as department files, supervisor files, desk files, and working files. Site files may be kept by a supervisor or kept in a central location within a department. Site files should only contain notes to help the supervisor remember specific occurrences, such as verbal coaching sessions, commendations and/or complaints from customers, staff, vendors or citizens, electronic or written instructions given to the employee, performance evaluations and improvement plans, and copies of informal and formal corrective action.

Site files shall not contain any documentation with personally identifiable information about the employee including social security numbers, birthdates, I-9 information etc. Site files also shall not contain any medical information. If an employee provides his or her supervisor with any medical documentation, including but not limited to return to work releases, the supervisor shall forward the documentation to Human Resources and not retain a copy.

The records contained in an employee’s site file are considered an official City record and shall not be removed or destroyed. In the event an employee terminates or transfers out of a department, the site file shall be sent to Human Resources. If site files are not kept in a centralized location in a department and an employee transfers to another position within the department, the site file shall be forwarded to the new supervisor in its entirety.


Employee benefits files are maintained by Human Resources and kept separate from the official personnel file. Benefit files include, but are not limited to, employee benefit elections, family medical leave information, medical certifications, return to work notes, emergency contact information, and documents regarding military leave, and compassionate leave. Supervisors do not have access and are not permitted to view an employee’s benefit file.


All personnel records are property of the City and no City official or staff shall have any personal or property right to such records even though he or she may have developed or compiled them. The destruction or removal of any of these records outside the City’s established records destruction schedule is prohibited.

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