No employee of the state or of the University of Minnesota in direct contact with suppliers or potential suppliers to the state or the university, or who may directly or indirectly influence a purchasing decision or contract by establishing specification, testing purchased products, evaluating contracted services, or otherwise has official involvement in the purchasing or contracting process may:
(1) have any financial interest or have any personal beneficial interest directly or indirectly in contracts or purchase orders for goods or services used by, or purchased for resale or furnished to a department or agency of the state or the university; or
(2) accept directly or indirectly from a person, firm, or corporation to which a contract or purchase order has been or may be, awarded, a rebate, gift, money, or anything of value other than items of nominal value. No such employee may further accept any promise, obligation or contract for future reward.
Textbooks, software, and other course materials authored by an employee of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities or of the University of Minnesota may be used as required course material. Instructors in state institutions and at the university may accept free samples of textbooks and related teaching materials.
The commissioners of human services and corrections may by rule prescribe procedures for the acceptance of gifts from any person or organization, provided that such gifts are accepted by the commissioner, or a designated representative of the commissioner, and that such gifts are used solely for the direct benefit of patients or inmates under the jurisdiction of the accepting state officer.
A violation of this section is a misdemeanor.