FPPC Releases Draft of Text Message Contribution Regulation - State and Federal Communications

August 30, 2011  •  

FPPC Releases Draft of Text Message Contribution Regulation

phoneThe 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.

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