March 10, 2020 •

Fundraising Window to Open for Los Angeles Citywide 2022 Candidates

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Los Angeles City Hall - Michael J Fromholtz

The Los Angeles Ethics Commission announced the fundraising window for the regular 2022 primary election. The window for citywide candidates will open March 8, 2020, while primary election are scheduled for March 8, 2022. City law specifies the primary election […]

The Los Angeles Ethics Commission announced the fundraising window for the regular 2022 primary election.

The window for citywide candidates will open March 8, 2020, while primary election are scheduled for March 8, 2022.

City law specifies the primary election fundraising window for citywide races will be 24 months.

Additionally, the window for City Council and Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education (LAUSD) races will be 18 months.

The fundraising window for City Council and LAUSD candidates in the regular 2022 primary election will open September 8, 2020.

The Ethics Commission has not changed the campaign contribution limits for candidates at this time.

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February 26, 2020 •

Oregon Republican Legislators Walkout Over Climate Bill

Oregon State Capitol Building

The Oregon state legislature adjourned Tuesday after House Republicans joined their Senate counterparts in walking out. Their goal is to stop progress on controversial cap-and-trade bills designed to combat climate change. The walkout came as Republican legislators accused the majority […]

The Oregon state legislature adjourned Tuesday after House Republicans joined their Senate counterparts in walking out.

Their goal is to stop progress on controversial cap-and-trade bills designed to combat climate change.

The walkout came as Republican legislators accused the majority Democrats of attempting to rush through aggressive emissions restrictions on industry and business.

They argue the proposed limits should be placed on the ballot for voters to decide.

The House walkout came a day after Senate Republicans staged their own walkout.

This denies Democrats the two-thirds majority needed to reach a quorum.

Senate Republicans walked out twice during last year’s session over a similar cap-and-trade bill and a $1 billion a year tax for education.

The House has not declared sine die, though the session is scheduled to end March 8.

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February 17, 2020 •

Judge Set to Confirm Most of San Francisco Political Ad Disclosure Rules

San Francisco, California - Noahnmf

U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer will uphold the bulk of a San Francisco ordinance requiring political ads to disclose top donors and secondary funding sources. Proposition F requires print, audio, and video political ads disclose the top three donors who […]

U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer will uphold the bulk of a San Francisco ordinance requiring political ads to disclose top donors and secondary funding sources.

Proposition F requires print, audio, and video political ads disclose the top three donors who contributed at least $5,000. If one of those donors is a PAC, the committee’s top two donors must also be disclosed.

The judge rejected claims the ad disclosure law hinders political speech.

Yes on Prop B argued the law unconstitutionally burdens its right to free speech and cited an en banc Ninth Circuit panel decision in American Beverage Association v. San Francisco blocking the city from requiring health warnings taking up 20% of billboard ads for sodas and sweetened drinks.

Judge Breyer found the court decision was not really on point because Proposition F was passed by a voter referendum and regulates political speech as opposed to commercial speech.

The judge also rejected an argument donor information is easily accessible on the San Francisco Ethics Commission website stating putting the onus on voters to look up the information would not match the law’s intent.

While refusing to block most of the law, Judge Breyer agreed requiring lengthy disclaimers for small print and short length political ads is likely unconstitutional and indicated he will issue a partial injunction blocking those types of restrictions.

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February 17, 2020 •

Alaska Supreme Court Allows Recall Dunleavy to Begin Gathering Signatures

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy

The Alaska Supreme Court issued an order allowing the campaign to recall Gov. Mike Dunleavy to begin collecting signatures. The decision reverses a lower court ruling pausing signature gathering and putting the case on an extremely speedy schedule by the […]

The Alaska Supreme Court issued an order allowing the campaign to recall Gov. Mike Dunleavy to begin collecting signatures.

The decision reverses a lower court ruling pausing signature gathering and putting the case on an extremely speedy schedule by the standards of the court.

Oral arguments over the legality of the recall will be held on March 25.

The Division of Elections will begin printing petition booklets for Recall Dunleavy to collect the required 71, 252 signatures.

If the Supreme Court rules the recall campaign legal, any election would take place 60 to 90 days after the Division of Elections confirms enough signatures have been gathered.

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February 13, 2020 •

Idaho Election Filing Deadlines Extended

Idaho Capitol Building - JSquish

At the request of Idaho Secretary of State Lawerence Denney, and in consultation with the office of the Governor, the Idaho Office of the Secretary of State is extending the February 10 filing deadline for PACs and candidates under the […]

At the request of Idaho Secretary of State Lawerence Denney, and in consultation with the office of the Governor, the Idaho Office of the Secretary of State is extending the February 10 filing deadline for PACs and candidates under the Idaho Sunshine Laws to February 17, 2020.

Being the first report due under the new revisions of the Sunshine Law, various unanticipated issues have made achieving the deadline by midnight unlikely for some candidates and PACs.

The fines stipulated by the new laws will also be pushed back and not be assessed at this time.

Another contributing factor to the delayed deadline is for many in local and special district offices, this report represents their first time ever filing with the Office of the Secretary of State and many were not aware of the steps required to gain access to the state’s campaign finance filing system.

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February 12, 2020 •

San Francisco Judge to Hear Challenge to New Campaign Finance Disclosure Rules

San Francisco, California - Noahnmf

A federal judge in San Francisco will hear arguments on February 14 on a free speech challenge to the new donor disclosure rules enacted by city voters in November. U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer will consider the Yes on B […]

A federal judge in San Francisco will hear arguments on February 14 on a free speech challenge to the new donor disclosure rules enacted by city voters in November.

U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer will consider the Yes on B campaign committee’s request for a preliminary injunction blocking the rules approved by voters as part of Proposition F.

The federal lawsuit was filed on January 28 claiming the rules violate the First Amendment free speech rights because the required disclosures occupy so much space in audio, video, and newspaper advertisements effectively drowning out the political message.

Proposition F, also known as the Sunlight on Dark Money Initiative, requires ads list the contribution amounts as well as the names of the top three donors of $5,000 or more, plus the names and amounts of the top two donors of more than $5,000 to a secondary committee contributing to a primary committee.

The lawsuit also disputes the lowering of the donation threshold to $5,000 from the previous threshold of $10,000 and a requirement donation disclosures be made at the beginning rather than the end of an audio or video message or telephone call.

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February 5, 2020 •

Oregon Referendum Process Could Change

Oregon State Capitol Building

Salem attorney Steve Elzinga has proposed changes to the state administrative rules to prevent manipulation of a mechanism allowing citizens to stop new laws passed by legislators. Our Oregon, a union backed political group, is alarmed about the proposed changes […]

Salem attorney Steve Elzinga has proposed changes to the state administrative rules to prevent manipulation of a mechanism allowing citizens to stop new laws passed by legislators.

Our Oregon, a union backed political group, is alarmed about the proposed changes to the state’s election rules.

The group says the rules give special interests excessive influence.

The opposing sides argue they are defending the ability of voters to directly access the state’s political system.

The Office of the Secretary of State held a hearing on the rule changes earlier this week. Secretary of State Bev Clarno could decide on the rule changes as soon as next month.

In Oregon, if citizens want to challenge a new law passed by the Legislature they can put it to a statewide vote by using the state’s referendum process.

Citizens have 90 days after the Legislature adjourns to petition for a referendum, unless a new law is written to take effect right away.

The number of signatures required to trigger a referendum is based on turnout in previous elections

The number of signatures required is currently 74,680.

However, signatures can’t be gathered until the governor signs the legislation into law.

The proposed change would permit collecting signatures for a referendum as soon as the targeted legislation passes both the House and the Senate.

Governors have 30 business days after the Legislature adjourns to sign a bill into law.

The change would prevent governors delaying the signing of a bill to chew up some of the 90 days set aside for petition work.

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January 30, 2020 •

Judge Places Recall Dunleavy Signature Gathering on Hold

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy

A superior court judge has delayed signature gathering for a campaign seeking to remove Gov. Mike Dunleavy from office. Judge Eric Aarseth issued a stay halting Recall Dunleavy from advancing its efforts, pending a decision from the Alaska Supreme Court. […]

A superior court judge has delayed signature gathering for a campaign seeking to remove Gov. Mike Dunleavy from office.

Judge Eric Aarseth issued a stay halting Recall Dunleavy from advancing its efforts, pending a decision from the Alaska Supreme Court.

The judge previously overruled a state Division of Elections decision rejecting the recall application.

Last week, there was some confusion over a stay, when the stay was issued and revoked a day later due to an error in the court system.

Although the ruling halts the recall campaign from moving forward with collecting signatures, both parties agreed to an expedited appeal.

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January 30, 2020 •

Oregon Democrats Seek to Delay Campaign Contribution Limits Until July 2021

Oregon State Capitol Building

House Democrats introduced a bill putting the 2006 voter approved campaign contribution limits on hold until at least July 2021. House Bill 4124 would give lawmakers more time to pass new campaign contribution limits to replace those approved by voters. […]

House Democrats introduced a bill putting the 2006 voter approved campaign contribution limits on hold until at least July 2021.

House Bill 4124 would give lawmakers more time to pass new campaign contribution limits to replace those approved by voters.

The bill would allow the Legislature to appoint a task force to study campaign finance and make recommendations on how to best establish effective political contribution limits.

Currently, Oregon has no campaign contribution limits because courts have repeatedly struck down or suspended them, including the initiative voters passed almost two decades ago.

The Oregon Supreme Court is expected to rule on Multnomah County’s voter approved campaign finance limits at some point this year.

A ruling in favor of the campaign finance limits would likely revive statewide donation caps as well.

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January 30, 2020 •

Oakland Public Ethics Commission to Consider Adjusting Contribution Limits

The Public Ethics Commission will consider annual adjustments to the contribution limits at their regular meeting next week. Commission staff will present an updated list of the campaign contribution limits and expenditure ceiling amounts, as adjusted according to the increase […]

The Public Ethics Commission will consider annual adjustments to the contribution limits at their regular meeting next week.

Commission staff will present an updated list of the campaign contribution limits and expenditure ceiling amounts, as adjusted according to the increase in the Consumer Price Index as required by the Oakland Campaign Finance Reform Act.

The limitations on contributions from persons to candidates who adopt the voluntary expenditure ceiling will increase to $900 per election.

If approved, the adjusted limits will be in effect for the 2020 elections.

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January 28, 2020 •

Washington Bill Aims to End Appearance of Lobbying Impropriety

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Washington State Capitol Building - Cacophony

Washington lawmakers have reintroduced a bill to impose a two year cooling off period to slow a revolving door of state officials and employees becoming lobbyists when they leave state employment. House Bill 1067 is intended to reduce the perception […]

Washington lawmakers have reintroduced a bill to impose a two year cooling off period to slow a revolving door of state officials and employees becoming lobbyists when they leave state employment.

House Bill 1067 is intended to reduce the perception of lobbyist impropriety.

The House Committee on State Government and Tribal Relations passed the bill out of committee.

The bill needs to pass the Rules Committee before getting a vote of the full House.

The State Government and Tribal Relations Committee passed the legislation during the last session, but the bill stalled.

The legislation would apply to state officers and employees who are employed by the state on or after July 1, 2021.

A companion bill, Senate Bill 5033, is moving through the Senate and passed to the Rules Committee.

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January 23, 2020 •

Los Angeles Repeals Requirements for Contractors to Reveal NRA Ties

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Los Angeles City Hall - Michael J Fromholtz

The Los Angeles City Council is repealing a law requiring companies seeking city contracts to disclose any ties to the National Rifle Association (NRA). This comes weeks after a federal judge blocked the city from enforcing the ordinance. Council members […]

The Los Angeles City Council is repealing a law requiring companies seeking city contracts to disclose any ties to the National Rifle Association (NRA).

This comes weeks after a federal judge blocked the city from enforcing the ordinance.

Council members unanimously voted 12-0 without discussion to repeal the ordinance.

The law required companies vying for city contracts to disclose contracts or sponsorship’s between them or their subsidiaries and the NRA.

In December, U.S. District Judge Stephen Wilson issued a preliminary injunction preventing the law from being enforced.

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January 21, 2020 •

Anaheim Updates Lobbyist Forms

The Office of the City Clerk updated their lobbyist forms and combined the Lobbyist Registration, Amendment, and Notice of Termination forms into one new form called the Lobbyist Form. The registration fee of $100 is due with submission of the […]

The Office of the City Clerk updated their lobbyist forms and combined the Lobbyist Registration, Amendment, and Notice of Termination forms into one new form called the Lobbyist Form.

The registration fee of $100 is due with submission of the new Lobbyist Form.

Also updated were the Lobbying Guide and the Lobbyist Quarterly Report of Activity Form.

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January 21, 2020 •

Idaho Lawmaker Unanimously Expelled from House

Idaho Capitol Building - JSquish

The Idaho House of Representatives voted unanimously to expel Rep. John Green, a day after a Texas federal jury convicted him of a felony. Rep. Green refused to resign from Seat B of House District 2 following a guilty verdict. […]

The Idaho House of Representatives voted unanimously to expel Rep. John Green, a day after a Texas federal jury convicted him of a felony.

Rep. Green refused to resign from Seat B of House District 2 following a guilty verdict.

The Idaho Attorney General’s Office sent House Speaker Scott Bedke a letter stating based on a review of the Idaho Constitution and state law, under the felony conviction, Green has lost his qualifications for office.

It was also noted in the letter the House is the judge of the qualifications of its own members.

Expelling a House member requires a two-thirds vote of the 70-member body.

With no debate, comment, or discussion the House voted 65-0 to expel Green.

It is the first time a lawmaker has been expelled from the Idaho Legislature.

Gov. Brad Little nominated Tim Kastning to serve as acting state representative during Green’s temporary absence for the trial.

The District 2 Republican Party now has 15 days to present three possible candidates to forward to the governor to choose a replacement.

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