March 8, 2016 •
New Jersey ELEC Expands Pay-to-Play Reporting Requirements for Business Entities Filing Form BE
New Jersey law requires every business receiving $50,000 in government contracts in a calendar year to file a Business Entity Annual Statement (Form BE) with the Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) by March 30 of the following year. ELEC recently amended Form BE to require filers to certify the statements on the form as accurate, to acknowledge penalties for willfully filing a false statement, and to identify whether each contract was awarded pursuant to a fair and open process.
Businesses completing Form BE for 2015 can expect to spend more time filing, as determining if a contract was awarded pursuant to a fair and open process may not be as simple as it sounds. The term may be defined differently at the state, county, and municipal levels, and some long-term contracts to be listed on the form may have been awarded years ago.
The fair and open certification is just another addition to New Jersey’s notoriously complex pay-to-play rules. Because certain laws apply only to contracts not awarded through a fair and open process, identifying a contract awarded through any other process will likely highlight the contract for regulatory agencies.
Although the changes will certainly make filing more complicated, ELEC has yet to issue guidance on the new requirements.
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