November 1, 2011 •
Candidates, Candidate Controlled Committees, and Independent Committees Affected
The Riverside County Board of Supervisors has approved ordinance number 913 which makes electronic campaign finance disclosure mandatory for candidates, candidate controlled committees, and independent committees which receive contributions or make expenditures of $5,000 or more.
Once the electronic reporting threshold has been met, all subsequent reports must be filed electronically.
The ordinance will take effect on November 28, 2011.
October 24, 2011 •
Third Party Disclaimer, Disclosure, and Reporting to be Required
The San Francisco Ethics Commission has approved amendments to the campaign finance reform ordinance. The language of the amendments is forthcoming and will be approved by the commission at the November 14, 2011 meeting.
Amendments that were proposed and approved at the October 19, 2011 commission meeting include disclaimer, disclosure, and reporting requirements for communications that are paid for by third parties concerning candidates for city elective office, an affirmation of the $500 per person contribution limit to candidates, and permission for campaign funds to be used by a candidate to attend a fundraiser for a charitable organization. The commission also approved a provision which will allow the commission to modify the $500 limit to reflect the consumer price index for future elections.
The commission further clarified that a candidate may transfer funds from the candidate’s committee only before the funds become surplus.
October 19, 2011 •
Modifies voluntary campaign expenditure limits and blackout periods
The San Jose City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday, October 18 to change the city’s campaign finance laws. Changes approved include the elimination of the city’s blackout periods which prohibit campaign contributions within 17 days of a regular election and within seven days of a special election.
Per the new law, the voluntary candidate campaign expenditure limits will increase from $1.00 per resident per election to $1.25. The rate for mayoral elections will remain the same at $0.75 per resident per election.
Further changes implemented by the new law eliminate an increase in the voluntary expenditure cap triggered by the fundraising efforts of other candidates and independent committees who do not choose to accept the limit.
October 17, 2011 •
Voluntary Ethics Course and Pledge to be Considered
The Torrance City Council will consider recommendations to revise its ethics laws at the October 18, 2011 city council meeting.
The recommendations to be considered include amending the code of ethics to extend to candidates for elective office and adopting guidelines which include a voluntary ethics course and ethics pledge for elected officials, appointed officials, and candidates for elective office.
October 13, 2011 •
Low dollar contributions to be permitted.
At its October 13, 2011 hearing, the Fair Political Practices Commission voted 3-0 to adopt Regulation 18421.31 regarding text message contributions. Per the new regulation candidates and committees are permitted to raise funds through low-dollar text message contributions.
For the purposes of the regulation, contributions are deemed to be received on the date that a mobile fundraising vendor, acting as an agent of the candidate or committee, obtains possession and control of the funds. Once received by the mobile fundraising vendor, contributions must be promptly reported to the candidate or committee’s treasurer or a designated agent thereof no later than the closing date of any campaign statement the candidate or committee is required to file.
For text message contributions of less than $25, candidates and committees will be required to maintain the dates and daily totals of contributions. For contributions exceeding $25 but less than $100, the regulation requires that candidates and committees record the full name and street address of the contributor, the cumulative amount received from each contribution, and any information regarding an intermediary where applicable.
When a contribution exceeding $100 is received, the regulation requires that the candidate or committee maintain a record of the contributor’s name and address, occupation, employer, the cumulative amount received from the contributor, and any information regarding an intermediary where applicable.
Under the regulation, a contribution made by text message will be attributed to the person who is subscribed to the cell phone number from which the contribution is received.
October 10, 2011 •
Changes registration and reporting requirements for placement agents
California Governor Jerry Brown has signed senate bill 398 into law. The bill alters definitions and reporting requirements for those who do business with the board of a public pension or retirement system to manage securities or other assets and went into effect upon signature.
Specifically, the new law modifies the definition of external managers to mean a person who is seeking to be, or is, retained by a board or an investment vehicle to manage a portfolio of securities or other assets for compensation, or a person who manages an investment fund, and who offers or sells, or has offered or sold an ownership interest in the investment fund to a board or investment vehicle. The law also alters the definition of a placement agent to a person directly or indirectly hired, engaged, or retained by, or serving for the benefit of or on behalf of, an external manger and who acts or has acted for compensation as a finder, solicitor, marketer, consultant, broker, or other intermediary in connection with the offer or sale to a board or investment vehicle either the investment management services of the external manager or an ownership interest in an investment fund managed by the external manager.
Additional changes made as the result of the new law include the exemption of placement agents from any requirements imposed by a local government agency, including lobbyist registration and reporting, if the placement agent is an employee, officer, or director of an external manager, or of an affiliate of an external manager, and the external manager is registered as an investment adviser or a broker-dealer with the Securities and Exchange Commission or any state securities regulator. Further, placement agents are exempt from local requirements if the external manager is participating in a competitive bidding process, such as a request for proposal, or has been selected through a competitive bidding process and is providing services pursuant to a contract executed as a result of that bidding process, or when the external manager, if selected through competitive bidding, has agreed to a fiduciary standard of care for the contract.
October 4, 2011 •
Board Members to be affected
State Senator Lou Correa is planning to introduce legislation that would make members of the public who are appointed to serve on boards subject to the state’s revolving door provision.
The legislation would require that all board members wait 12 months after terminating board service before lobbying their former colleagues.
Photo of the California Senate chamber by David Monniaux on Wikipedia.
September 28, 2011 •
Ordinance to be Drafted.
The San Bernardino County supervisors voted to endorse a plan to limit campaign contributions at their September 27, 2011 meeting. The supervisors further voted to direct the county counsel’s office to draft an ordinance to be voted on by the supervisors at a future meeting.
The current plan would allow individuals to donate up to $3,900 per election cycle. Small contributor committees would be permitted to donate $7,800 per election cycle.
September 26, 2011 •
Proposal to set limits for individuals, businesses, and PACs
Two San Bernardino County supervisors will introduce a proposal at the Board of Supervisors meeting on September 27, 2011 which would create a law regulating political contributions for county elections.
The supervisors hope to impose and enforce limits on contributions from individuals, businesses, and political action committees contributing to county elections.
The image of the San Bernardino County Seal by Jetijones on Wikipedia.
September 15, 2011 •
Session to address legislative redistricting and disaster relief
North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple has called a special legislative session to begin on November 7, 2011.
The session is expected to last five days and will address issues including legislative redistricting and disaster relief.
September 13, 2011 •
Candidates and PACs to be affected
The Riverside County Board of Supervisors will be considering a proposal today which would make electronic filing mandatory for all campaign finance reports filed by candidates and PACs.
The county registrar of voters presently has a system that allows for electronic filing; however, use of the system is optional.
The move to mandatory electronic filing is being proposed as a mechanism to increase transparency.
September 6, 2011 •
Gift law provisions to be modified
The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission has issued recommendations to reform the state code of ethics.
The Commission has recommended repealing the provision allowing lobbyists to spend $100 annually on food and beverages for each legislative official and their respective families.
Further, the Commission has recommended that candidates for the state legislature be subjected to the same gift restrictions as legislative officials.
This would include a prohibition on the receipt of anything of value from lobbyists.
August 30, 2011 •
Interested persons’ meeting to be held.
The Fair Political Practices Commission will hold an interested persons’ meeting on Tuesday, September 13, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. to discuss the proposed text message contribution regulation. The commission has also issued a notice to adopt the text message regulation at a public hearing to be held on or after October 13, 2011.
The proposed regulation permits candidates and committees to raise funds through low-dollar text message contributions. For the purposes of the regulation, contributions are deemed to be received on the date that a mobile fundraising vendor, acting as an agent of the candidate or committee, obtains possession and control of the funds. Once received by the mobile fundraising vendor, contributions must be promptly reported to the candidate or committee’s treasurer or a designated agent thereof no later than the closing date of any campaign statement the candidate or committee is required to file.
For text message contributions of less than $25, candidates and committees will be required to maintain the dates and daily totals of contributions. For contributions exceeding $25 but less than $100, the proposed regulation requires that candidates and committees record the full name and street address of the contributor, the cumulative amount received from each contribution, and any information regarding an intermediary where applicable. When a contribution exceeding $100 is received, the regulation requires that the candidate or committee maintain a record of the contributor’s name and address, occupation, employer, the cumulative amount received from the contributor, and any information regarding an intermediary where applicable.
Under the proposed regulation, a contribution made by text message will be attributed to the person who is subscribed to the cell phone number from which the contribution is received.
August 18, 2011 •
Voter Approved Campaign Finance Reform Delayed
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.
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