E-News from State and Federal
E - x - p - a -
n - d - i - n - g our Online guides
We are always looking to add
value to our services. You may have noticed in the past three
months we have added 36 new jurisdictions to our online website.
Now that we are starting the
last quarter of the year, we are going to increase the amount of
information in each section.
Executive Sourcebook on
are separating the penalties so you will see what they are
for registration, reporting, and gift violations.
the jurisdiction have a document retention policy?
gift splitting allowed?
are also separating the gift restrictions for lobbyists and
Executive’s Sourcebook on
is the jurisdiction’s document retention policy?
restrictions are there on fundraising, as applied both to
corporations attending a political event and as applied to
corporations holding its own fundraiser?
Executive’s Sourcebook on
on pre-RFP communications between a bidder and the
there any post-RFP “cone of silence” restrictions?
between "bidder" and "contractor."
It continues to be our goal to
be your #1 online resource for lobbying, political
contributions, and procurement lobbying.
Until next month, let your
fingers do the walking at
and see the amount of information available to you and your
Elizabeth Z. Bartz
President and CEO
Developments in PAC Solicitations
Two seemingly small
and recent developments involving federal campaign finance contributions
could significantly affect the landscape of fundraising in the upcoming
The Federal Elections Commission (FEC) entered into a
Stipulated Order and Consent Judgment with the National Defense PAC (NDPAC),
agreeing to not enforce laws preventing NDPAC from simultaneously
soliciting and collecting contributions, for both candidates and for
independent expenditures, all as one PAC.
As a single committee, the NDPAC may now contribute
directly to candidates and political committees, and make independent
expenditures, separating the funds only by using two separate bank
accounts. It must maintain the statutory limits on the solicitation of
funds used for direct contributions while it may simultaneously seek
unlimited funds for use in their independent expenditures. While the
Stipulated Order and Consent Judgment only applies to NDPAC, it does not
address other PACs utilizing the same procedures. The FEC has yet to
issue any statement about whether it intends to enforce the laws against
other PACs seeking to solicit contributions in the same manner.
Another change from the FEC in the permissible methods of
soliciting political contributions involves allowing federal candidates
to solicit contributions for independent expenditure-only political
committees (IEOPC) up to $5,000. In an advisory opinion, which was
approved unanimously by the commissioners, the FEC held solicitations by
federal candidates are restricted to the applicable “limitations,
prohibitions, and reporting requirements” of 2 U.S.C. §441i(e)(1)(a).
While an IEOPC may accept unlimited contributions, the
commission held the law still restricts the contribution amount a
federal candidate may solicit. Therefore, although federal officeholders
and candidates, and officers of national party committees, cannot
solicit unlimited contributions for an IEOPC, they may still make
solicitations within the monetary structures of the amended Federal
Election Campaign Act of 1971.
The opinion also concluded federal officeholders and
candidates, and national party officers, may attend, speak at, and be
featured guests at fundraisers held by an IEOPC, even when unlimited
contributions are simultaneously being solicited from corporations,
individuals, and labor organizations. The federal candidate would have
to restrict their personal solicitation at the event to the amounts
limited by the law.
Legislation We Are
At any given time, more than 1,000
legislative bills, which can affect how you do business as a government
affairs professional, are being discussed in federal, state, and local
jurisdictions. These bills are summarized in the State and Federal
Communications’ digital encyclopedias for lobbying laws, political
contributions, and procurement lobbying, and can be found in the client
portion of the State and Federal Communications' website.
Summaries of major bills are also included
in monthly e-mail updates sent to all clients. The chart below shows the
number of bills we are tracking in regards to lobbying laws, political
contributions, and procurement lobbying.
Number of Jurisdictions
Summary of Changes UPDATE
Note Recent Changes to
by John Cozine, Esq.
The Nebraska Accountability and Disclosure Commission voted unanimously
to stop enforcement of a 1992 law aimed at leveling the playing field in
state political races. This decision stems from the recent United States
Supreme Court decision concerning the state of Arizona where a similar
law was deemed unconstitutional. Under Nebraska's law, candidates could
qualify for "fair fight" money from the state if they adhered to
voluntary spending limits and their opponent had exceeded such limits.
Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning, who had recently opined the law
would be found unconstitutional if challenged in court, will have 10
days to file suit once the Commission officially notifies his office of
the refusal to enforce the law, as is required in Nebraska any time a
state agency refuses to enforce a law.
The district council has passed the Campaign Finance
Reporting Emergency Amendment Act of 2011, which requires increased
campaign finance reporting in the year preceding an election,
commensurate with the change of the September primary election and the
February presidential preference election to the 1st Tuesday in April in
an election year. A political committee supporting a candidate or
candidates participating in the April 3, 2012, primary election must
file reports of receipts and expenditures in the seven months preceding
the date on which the election is held. Political committees supporting
a candidate or candidates participating in the April 3, 2012, primary
election must now file reports of receipts and expenditures on October
10, 2011; December 10, 2011; January 31, 2012; March 10, 2012; and March
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA:
Implementation of Measure H, a campaign finance reform approved by
voters earlier this year, has been delayed by the Los Angeles City
Council. Measure H bans campaign contributions from contractors to
elected officials responsible for reviewing proposals for city work
valued at $100,000 or more.
Governor Cuomo has signed the Public Integrity Reform Act of 2011 into
law. The new law creates the Joint Commission on Public Ethics to
replace the Commission on Public Integrity. As the Commission on Public
Integrity is phased out, a skeleton staff will continue to receive
required filings from lobbyists. The office’s records will be handled by
the New York Inspector General until the Joint Commission on Public
Ethics is staffed and operable. Additionally, the law increases the
level of disclosure required of elected officials and lobbyists,
including requiring more detailed information about outside income and
business relationships between politicians and those having business
before the state.
The 1st Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the constitutionality of
Maine's reporting requirements for political action committees,
rejecting a challenge brought by the National Organization for Marriage.
The National Organization for Marriage challenged the constitutionality
of Maine's election law, claiming Maine’s reporting requirements for
political action committees were vague and over-broad. The 1st Circuit
Court decision upheld the constitutionality of Maine's laws requiring
the disclosure of contributions and expenditures in candidate elections
by PACs and by independent groups. The decision also overturned a
portion of the district court’s ruling which found the words "influence"
and "influencing" were unconstitutionally vague as applied in the Maine
ASK THE EXPERTS
State and Federal
Communications’ Experts Answer Your Questions
Here is your chance to “Ask the Experts” at State and
Federal Communications, Inc. You can directly submit questions for this
feature, and we will select those most appropriate and answer them here.
Send your questions to:
(Of course, we have always been available to answer questions from
clients that are specific to your needs, and we encourage you to
continue to call or e-mail us with questions about your particular
company or organization. As always, we will confidentially and directly
provide answers or information you need.) Our replies to your questions
are not legal advice. Instead, these replies represent our analysis of
laws, rules, and regulations.
I’m registered as a legislative lobbyist in Indiana. How
should I keep track of reportable
expenditures for my upcoming report due in November?
The Indiana Lobby Registration Commission (ILRC)
is currently in the process of reviewing the
reporting guidelines for lobbyist expenditures and
gifts. As fall kicks off and the November reporting deadline will
soon be upon us, it is important to review key reporting changes.
Specifically, the ILRC does not consider a meal
expenditure on behalf of a legislator to be a gift, but instead, an
entertainment expenditure, as long as the lobbyist is present when the
meal is consumed. Per the ILRC’s reporting guidelines, please make
sure you save an itemized receipt outlining the exact cost of the
meals associated with reportable legislators. Here are some
important things to remember regarding entertainment expenditures,
When determining how much to attribute to a
only direct costs must be associated with the legislator.
Unlike most states, determining a pro-rata cost of an official’s
meal by dividing the bill by the number of people present is not
permissible. Instead, you must save an itemized receipt, and
attribute only the amount of the specific items ordered for that
particular legislator. Tax and tip must be appropriately
allocated as well.
If you are not present when making an expenditure,
this qualifies as a
gift, and is subject to special reporting guidelines.
Starting with this reporting period (form was not developed until
late April), a gift report must be submitted if a gift is given
to a legislator equaling $50.00 per day, or $250.00 in the aggregate.
This report is due 15 business days after the gift is given. A
copy must be sent to the legislator who is named in the report.
Moreover, informed prior consent must be obtained from the
legislator before the gift is given.
Wealth of Information at
Want to interact
with your fellow government affairs and procurement colleagues? Then
jump into the State and Federal Communications, Inc. blog at
Once there, you
can join the exchange of ideas and view solutions to common challenges
and problems. Also, State and Federal Communications continually adds
content to the blog, including ‘hot topics,’ which are summaries of
important news items you need to know.
the conversation, and make use of this valuable information resource.
State and Federal
Steve Quinn, Elizabeth Bartz, George Ticoras,
and Myra Cottrill
attended the PLI Corporate Political Activities 2011
in Washington, D.C.
Elizabeth with friend of State and Federal,
of JP Morgan Chase.
PAC State and Local Governments 2011 Seminar
attendees with some participants from State and Federal
included: Brenda Plantikow of Public Affairs Council,
Zachary Hoying, Sarah Kovit, Breanna Olson of Public Affairs
Ken Kelewae, and Jon Spontarelli.
See Us in Person
Plan to say hello at future
State and Federal Communications
will be attending and/or speaking regarding
September 29-October 2, 2011
NCSL Executive Committee Meeting
October 4, 2011
October 19-23, 2011
Council of State Governments Annual Meeting
November 8, 2011
November 9, 2011
November 16, 2011
American League of Lobbyist Annual Meeting
November 19-22, 2011
2011 SGAC Foundation Leaders' Policy Conference
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