State Campaign Finance Disclosure Requirements

7/5/2022

 

Campaign finance disclosure laws vary by state, but state frameworks tend to share commonalities. Most disclosure laws a) require candidates, political committees and other entities that primarily work to elect or defeat candidates to register with the state and b) to file periodic reports about their contributions, expenditures and donors.

Legal analyses of campaign finance laws typically focus on the tension between the government’s interests in regulating money in politics and the potential abridgment of freedom of speech as protected by the First Amendment. The U.S. Supreme Court has consistently upheld the constitutionality of disclosure requirements. In Buckley v. Valeo (1976), the Court held that reporting and disclosure laws can serve governmental interests in three ways. First, the laws may help voters to evaluate candidates by providing information about funding sources. Second, the laws can help to deter quid pro quo corruption and the appearance of it. Third, disclosure requirements provide information necessary to detect violations of the law. The Court reinforced this holding in McConnell v. FEC (2003) and Citizens United v. FEC (2010).

To learn more about state-by-state disclosure reporting requirements for candidates, committees and others, select from the tabs at the top of the map below either “Contributions,” “Expenditures,” “Independent Expenditures,” “Electioneering Communications,” “Ballot Measures” or “Registration and Reporting Processes”. Then, select a state on the map for state-specific information.

NOTE: NCSL does not provide legal advice. If you are a candidate or elected official, please contact your state’s campaign finance enforcement entity; these can be found on NCSL’s Campaign Finance Enforcement webpage.

 

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ALABAMA

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Definition

Political action committee means any committee, club, association, political party, or other group of one or more persons, whether in-state or out-of-state, which receives or anticipates receiving contributions and makes or anticipates making expenditures to or on behalf of any Alabama state or local elected official, proposition, candidate, principal campaign committee or other political action committee.

(Code of Ala. § 17-5-2)

What Needs to be Reported

PACs supporting a proposition must file a report containing contribution and expenditure disclosures. The report must disclose:

  • The identity of each person who has made contributions within the calendar year in an aggregate amount greater than $100. This includes names, addresses, amounts and date of contributions.
  • PACs must disclose the name and city of residence of each person who has made contributions within the calendar year in an aggregate amount greater than $100.
  • The total amount of other contributions received during the calendar year that are not reported under the itemized section.
  • The amount of cash or other assets on hand at the beginning of the reporting period and at the end of the reporting period.
  • The identification of each person to whom expenditures have been made by or on behalf of such committee or elected official within the calendar year in an aggregate amount greater than $100, including the amount, date and purpose of each such expenditure and, if applicable, the designation of each constitutional amendment or other proposition with respect to which an expenditure was made.
  • The identification of each person to whom an expenditure for personal services, salaries and reimbursed expenses greater than $100 has been made, and which is not otherwise reported or exempted from the provisions of this chapter, including the amount, date and purpose of such expenditure.
  • The grand total of all expenditures made by such committee or elected official during the calendar year.
  • The amount and nature of campaign debts and obligations owed by or to the committee or elected official, together with a statement as to the circumstances and conditions under which any such debt or obligation was extinguished and the consideration.

(Ala. Code § 17-5-8)

ALASKA

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Definition

Ballot proposition includes a bonding proposition, ballot initiative, ballot referendum, recall, advisory vote, ballot question proposed by the legislature, ballot measure to amend the Alaska Constitution and any other question on the ballot in an election.

Groups include any combination of two or more individuals acting jointly who organize for the principal purpose of filing an initiative proposal application or which files an initiative proposal application.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.400, 2 Alaska Admin. Code 50.405)

What Needs to be Reported

Ballot proposition groups file independent expenditure reports. See “independent expenditures” tab.

Political action committees and nongroup entities (a person, other than an individual, that takes action the major purpose of which is to influence the outcome of an election, and that cannot participate in business activities, like a 501(c)(4) organization) supporting or opposing a ballot proposition or question must file a report containing the following information:

  • The name, address, principal occupation and employer of the individual filing the report.
  • An itemized list of all expenditures made, incurred or authorized by the person.
  • The name of the title of the ballot proposition or question supported or opposed by each expenditure and whether the expenditure is made to support or oppose the ballot proposition or question.
  • The name and address of each officer and director, if any.
  • The aggregate amount of all contributions, if any, that was specifically given for the purpose of influencing a ballot proposition or question must be reported, including the date and amount of each contribution; and, for a contributor:
    • Who is an individual, the name and address of the contributor and, for contributions in excess of $50 in the aggregate during a calendar year, the name, address, principal occupation, and employer of the contributor.
    • That is not an individual, the name and address of the contributor and the name and address of each officer and director of the contributor.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.040, Alaska Stat. § 15.13.110, 2 Alaska Admin. Code 50.321)

ARIZONA

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Definition

Political action committee means an entity that is required to register as a political action committee.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 16-901)

What Needs to be Reported

A political action committee or entity that makes ballot measure expenditures in excess of $1,000 during a reporting period must file an expenditure report. Expenditure reports must identify:

  • The ballot measure supported or opposed.
  • The ballot measure serial number.
  • The election date.
  • The mode of advertising and distribution.
  • The first date of publication.
  • The display, delivery or broadcast of the advertisement.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 16-926)

ARKANSAS

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Definition

Ballot question means a question in the form of a statewide, county, municipal, or school district initiative or referendum which is submitted or intended to be submitted to a popular vote at an election, whether or not it qualifies for the ballot.

Ballot question committee means:

  • Any person, located within or outside Arkansas, that receives contributions for the purpose of expressly advocating the qualification, disqualification, passage, or defeat of any ballot question, or any person, other than an elected official expending public funds, or an individual, located within or outside Arkansas, who makes expenditures for the purpose of expressly advocating the qualification, disqualification, passage or defeat of any ballot question.
  • A person other than an individual or an approved political action, located within or outside Arkansas, also qualifies as a ballot question committee if 2% or more of its annual revenues, operating expenses or funds are used to make a contribution or contributions to another ballot question committee and if the contribution or contributions exceed $10,000 in value.

Legislative question committee means any person, located within or outside Arkansas, that receives contributions for the purpose of expressly advocating the passage or defeat of any legislative question or any person, other than an elected official expending public funds, or an individual, located within or outside Arkansas, who makes expenditures for the purpose of expressly advocating the passage or defeat of any legislative question.

(Ark. Code Ann. § 7-9-402)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot question committee or a legislative question committee must report the following information:

  • The total amount of contributions received.
  • The total amount of expenditures made by the committee or on behalf of the committee by an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant during the period covered by the financial report.
  • The cumulative amount of contributions and expenditures reported for each ballot question or legislative question.
  • The balance of cash and cash equivalents on hand at the beginning and the end of the period covered by the financial report.
  • The total amount of contributions received during the period covered by the financial report from persons who contributed less than $50 and the cumulative amount of that total for each ballot question or legislative question.
  • The total amount of contributions received during the period covered by the financial report from persons who contributed $50 or more and the cumulative amount of that total for each ballot question or legislative question.
  • The name and street address of each person who contributed $50 or more during the period covered by the financial report, together with the amount contributed, the date of receipt, and the cumulative amount contributed by that person for each ballot question or legislative question.
  • For each person, the contributor's principal place of business, employer, occupation, the amount contributed, the date the contribution was accepted by the committee and the cumulative amount contributed for each ballot question or legislative question.
  • The name and address of each person who contributed a nonmoney item, together with a description of the item, the date of receipt, and the value, not including volunteer service by individuals.
  • A list of all expenditures by category, including without limitation the following:
  • Advertising.
  • Direct mail.
  • Office supplies.
  • Travel.
  • Expenses.
  • Telephone.
  • The total amount of nonitemized expenditures made during the period covered by the financial report.
  • The total amount of contributions made by the committee to another ballot or legislative question committee reported during the period covered by the financial report; and the cumulative amount of contributions.
  • The name and street address of each person to whom expenditures totaling $100 or more were made by the committee or on behalf of the committee, by an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant, together with the date and amount of each separate expenditure to each person during the period covered by the financial report and the purpose of each expenditure.

An individual person must report the following information:

  • The total amount of expenditures made by the individual person or on behalf of the individual person by an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant during the period covered by the financial report; and the cumulative amount of expenditures for each ballot question or legislative question.
  • The name and street address of each person to whom expenditures totaling $100 or more were made by the individual person or on behalf of the individual person by an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant, together with the date and amount of each separate expenditure to each person during the period covered by the financial report and the purpose of each expenditure.

An elected official using public funds must report the following information:

  • The total amount of expenditures made by the elected official using public funds or on behalf of the elected official using public funds by an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant during the period covered by the financial report.
  • The cumulative amount of expenditures for each ballot question or legislative question.
  • The name and street address of each person to whom expenditures totaling $100 or more were made by the elected official using public funds, or on behalf of the elected official using public funds, by an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant, together with the date and amount of each separate expenditure to each person during the period covered by the financial report and the purpose of each expenditure.

(Ark. Code Ann. § 7-9-407)

CALIFORNIA

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Definition

Measure means any constitutional amendment or other proposition which is submitted to a popular vote at an election by action of a legislative body, or which is submitted or is intended to be submitted to a popular vote at an election by initiative, referendum or recall procedure whether or not it qualifies for the ballot.

Ballot measure committee is any person or group receiving contributions of $2,000 or more in a calendar year for the qualification, passage or defeat of a ballot measure or ballot measures.

(Cal. Gov’t Code § 82043)

What Needs to be Reported

Reporting of state or local ballot measure contributions and expenditures is required each time a person or committee makes an expenditure totaling $5,000 or more to support or oppose the qualification or passage of a single state ballot measure. The report must be filed within 10 business days of making the contributions or expenditures and should contain all of the following:

  • The full name, street address and identification number of the committee.
  • The number or letter of the measure if the measure has qualified for the ballot and has been assigned a number or letter; the title of the measure if the measure has not been assigned a number or letter but has been issued a title by the attorney general; or the subject of the measure if the measure has not been assigned a number or letter and has not been issued a title by the attorney general.
  • Disclose contributions of $100 or more received since the closing date of the last campaign statement filed through the date of the independent expenditure. It should report:
    • The date and amount of the contribution.
    • The name, address and identification number of the committee to whom the contribution was made.
  • The information regarding contributions or loans received.
  • The date, amount, and a description of the goods or services for which the expenditure was made for the ballot measure.

(Cal. Gov’t Code §§ 84204, 84204.5, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 2, § 18225.7)

COLORADO

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Definition

Issue committee means any person, other than a natural person, or any group of two or more persons, including natural persons:

  • That has a major purpose of supporting or opposing any ballot issue or ballot question. or
  • That has accepted or made contributions or expenditures in excess of $200 to support or oppose any ballot issue or ballot question.

(Colo. Const. Art. XXVIII, Section 2)

What Needs to be Reported

All issue committees must report their contributions received, including the name and address of each person who has contributed $20 or more, expenditures made and obligations entered into by the committee or party.

Committees must report:

  • All contributions and obligations entered into, including the name and address of each person who has contributed $20 or more.
  • Committees receiving one-time contributions of $100 or more from natural persons, including non-monetary contributions, must also include the occupation and employer of the contributor on the report.
  • For each person to whom an expenditure of $20 or more has been made during the period covered by the report, it must include the person’s name, address, the date and amount of each expenditure and the purpose for the expenditure.
  • The balance of funds at the beginning and end of the reporting period.
  • The totals of contributions received and expenditures made during the reporting period.
  • The name and address of the financial institution used by the committee.

(C.R.S. § 1-45-108)

CONNECTICUT

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Definition

Political committees formed to support or oppose any referendum question or constitutional amendment must file regular reports as other political committees.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-601a)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees must file a report containing contribution and expenditure disclosures. Each finance disclosure statement must include:

  • Name of contributor.
  • Address of contributor.
  • The amount received during the relevant reporting period.
  • Method of contribution.
  • Date of the contribution.
  • The aggregate amount of contributions.
  • Each individual who contributes in excess of $100 but not more than $1,000, in the aggregate, to the extent known, the principal occupation of such individual and the name of the individual’s employer, if any.
  • Each individual who contributes in excess of $1,000, in the aggregate, the principal occupation of such individual and the name of the individual’s employer, if any.
  • The name and address of any person who is the guarantor of a loan to, or the cosigner of a note with, the treasurer in the case of a party committee or a political committee or who has advanced a security deposit to a telephone company for telecommunications service for a committee.
  • Each itemized contribution made by a lobbyist, the spouse of a lobbyist or any dependent child of a lobbyist who resides in the lobbyist’s household.
  • Each expenditure, regardless of the amount, must be separately itemized, including the full name and complete address of each payee, including secondary payees.
  • The amount and the purpose of the expenditure.
  • A statement of the balance on hand or deficit.
  • Each expense incurred but not paid, provided if the expense is incurred by use of a credit card, the accounting must include secondary payees and the amount owed to each such payee.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-608)

DELAWARE

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Delaware does not statutorily regulate support for, or opposition to, ballot measures or referendums.

FLORIDA

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Definition of Ballot Issue

Issue means a proposition that is required by the state constitution, by law or resolution of the Legislature, or by the charter, ordinance or resolution of a political subdivision of this state to be submitted to the electors for their approval or rejection at an election, or a proposition for which a petition is circulated in order to have such proposition placed on the ballot at an election.

Political committee means a combination of two or more individuals, or a person other than an individual, that, in an aggregate amount in excess of $500 during a single calendar year that accepts contributions or makes expenditures for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of the passage or defeat of an issue.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.011)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees supporting or opposing ballot issues must file regulator contributions and expenditure reports.

  • All contributions are reported, but contributions over $100 are itemized. Each report must disclose the following information, for the reporting period:
  • The full name and address of contributor.
  • The occupation of contributor, if any.
  • The amount and date of contribution.
  • For corporations, the report must provide as clear a description as practicable of the principal type of business conducted by the corporation.
  • The name and address of each political committee from which the reporting committee received, or to which the reporting committee made, any transfer of funds, together with the amounts and dates of all transfers.
  • A statement of each contribution, rebate, refund or other receipt not otherwise listed.
  • The total sums of all loans, in-kind contributions and other receipts by or for such committee during the reporting period. The reporting forms are designed to elicit separate totals for in-kind contributions, loans and other receipts.
  • The full name and address of each person to whom expenditures have been made along with the amount, date and clear purpose of the expenditure.
  • Transaction information for each credit card purchase.
  • The primary purposes of an expenditure for goods and services such as communications media placement or procurement services, campaign signs, insurance and other expenditures that include multiple components as part of the expenditure. The primary purpose of an expenditure shall be that purpose, including integral and directly related components, that comprises 80% of such expenditure.
  • Total sum of expenditures during the reporting period.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.07)

GEORGIA

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Definition

Campaign committee means the candidate, person, or committee which accepts contributions or makes expenditures designed to bring about the nomination or election of an individual to any elected office.

The term “campaign committee” also means any person or committee which accepts contributions or makes expenditures designed to bring about the recall of a public officer holding elective office or to oppose the recall of a public officer holding elective office or any person or any committee which accepts contributions or makes expenditures designed to bring about the approval or rejection by the voters of any proposed constitutional amendment, a state-wide referendum, or a proposed question which is to appear on the ballot in this state or in a county or a municipal election in this state.

(Ga. Code Ann. § 21-5-3)

What Needs to be Reported

Campaign committees file regular campaign disclosure reports. The disclosure reports require contributions and expenditures, in the aggregate, of more than $100 in the calendar year to be itemized and listed on each report. The report must include:

  • The contributor's name in alphabetical order by last name.
  • The contributor's occupation.
  • The complete mailing address of the contributor.
  • The amount of the contribution.
  • The date of receipt of the contribution.
  • The contributor's employer.
  • The election for which the contribution has been accepted and allocated.
  • The name of each recipient of the expenditure in alphabetical order by last name or by company name.
  • The complete mailing address of the recipient.
  • If recipient is an individual, the occupation and place of employment.
  • The amount of the expenditure.
  • The general purpose of the expenditure.
  • The date of the expenditure.

(Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. r. 189-3-.01)

HAWAII

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Definition

Ballot issue committee means a noncandidate committee that has the exclusive purpose of making or receiving contributions, making expenditures, or incurring financial obligations for or against any question or issue appearing on the ballot at the next applicable election.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-302)

What Needs to be Reported

Noncandidate committees must file preliminary, final and supplemental reports that disclose the following information:

  • The noncandidate committee's name and address.
  • The cash on hand at the beginning of the reporting period and election period.
  • The reporting period and election period aggregate totals for each of the following categories:
  • Contributions received.
  • Contributions made.
  • An expenditure, when made or incurred for the purpose of influencing the outcome of any question or issue on the ballot, the report must include the following:
  • Any purchase or transfer of money or anything of value.
  • A promise or agreement to purchase or transfer money or anything of value.
  • Any payment incurred or made.
  • Other receipts.
  • The cash on hand at the end of the reporting period.
  • The surplus or deficit at the end of the reporting period.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 11-302, 11-333, 11-335)

IDAHO

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Definition

Measure means any proposal submitted to the people for their approval or rejection at an election, including any initiative, referendum, recall election, or revision of or amendment to the state constitution. An initiative or referendum proposal shall be deemed a measure when the attorney general, county prosecutor, or city attorney, as appropriate, reviews it and gives it a ballot title. A recall shall be deemed a measure upon approval of the recall petition.

(Idaho Code § 67-6602)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees supporting or opposing ballot issues must file regulator contributions and expenditure reports.

All contributions must be reports and contributions of more than $50 must be itemize. The reporting statements will include the following:

  • Full name of contributor.
  • Complete address of contributor.
  • The amount contributed by that person.

All expenditures must be reported and expenditures of more than $25 must be itemized. The reporting statement will include the following:

  • The name and address of each person to whom an expenditure or encumbrance was made in the amount of $25 or more.
  • The amount.
  • The date of the expenditure.
  • The purpose of each such expenditure.
  • The statement may list as a single item the total amount of expenditures and encumbrances of less than $25 without showing the exact amount of or requiring evidence of each such expenditure or encumbrance.
  • Anything of value, other than money, paid for or contributed by any person should be listed both as an expenditure and as a contribution.

Each expenditure or encumbrance in the amount of $25 or more must be evidenced by an invoice, receipt, or canceled check or an accurate copy thereof.

(Idaho Code § 67-6607)

ILLINOIS

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Definition

Ballot initiative committee means any natural person, trust, partnership, committee, association, corporation or other organization or group of persons that accepts contributions or makes expenditures during any 12-month period in an aggregate amount exceeding $5,000 in support of or in opposition to any question of public policy to be submitted to the electors.

  • The $5,000 threshold applies to any contributions or expenditures received or made with the purpose of securing a place on the ballot for, advocating the defeat or passage of, or engaging in electioneering communication regarding the question of public policy, regardless of the method of initiation of the question of public policy and regardless of whether petitions have been circulated or filed with the appropriate office or whether the question has been adopted and certified by the governing body.

(10 ILCS 5/9-1.8)

What Needs to be Reported

Ballot initiative committees must file regular contributions and expenditure reports after reaching the $5,000 threshold.

  • Contributions and itemize contributions, including in-kind contributions, more than $150 with:
  • The full name and mailing address of contributor.
  • The amount and date of contributions.
  • If the contributor is an individual who contributed more than $500, the occupation and employer of the contributor or, if the occupation and employer of the contributor are unknown, a statement that the committee has made a good faith effort to ascertain this information.
  • The total sum of individual contributions made to or for the committee during the reporting period.
  • The name and address of each political committee from which the reporting committee received, or to which that committee made, any transfer of funds in the aggregate amount or value in excess of $150, together with the amounts and dates of all transfers.
  • The total sum of transfers made to or from the committee during the reporting period.
  • Each loan to or from any person, political committee or financial institution within the reporting period by or to the committee in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $150, together with the full names and mailing addresses of the lender and endorsers, if any; the dates and amounts of the loans; and, if a lender or endorser is an individual who loaned or endorsed a loan of more than $500, the occupation and employer of that individual or, if the occupation and employer of the individual are unknown, a statement that the committee has made a good faith effort to ascertain this information.
  • Each contribution, rebate, refund, income from investments or other receipt in excess of $150 received by the committee not otherwise reported and, if the contributor is an individual who contributed more than $500, the occupation and employer of the contributor or, if the occupation and employer of the contributor are unknown, a statement that the committee has made a good faith effort to ascertain this information.

(10 ILCS 5/9-11)

INDIANA

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Definition

Political action committee means an organization located within or outside Indiana that satisfies all of the following:

  • The organization proposes to influence the outcome of a public question.
  • The organization accepts contributions or makes expenditures during a calendar year to influence the outcome of a public question that will appear on the ballot in Indiana; and that in the aggregate exceed $100.

(Burns Ind. Code Ann. § 3-5-2-15)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees supporting or opposing ballot issues must file regular contributions and expenditure reports. The report must include:

  • The total sum of individual contributions accepted by the committee during its reporting period.
  • Each person who has made one or more contributions within the year, in an aggregate amount that exceeds the threshold contribution amount will provide the date and amount of each contribution, along with the name and mailing address of the person making the contribution. The person’s occupation, if the person is an individual who has made contributions to the committee of at least one $1,000 during the calendar year.
  • The name and address of each committee from which the reporting committee received, or to which that committee made, a transfer of funds, together with the amounts and dates of all transfers.
  • Each loan to or from a person within the reporting period together with the full names and mailing addresses of the lender and endorsers, if any. The person’s occupation, if the person is an individual who has made loans of at least $1,000 to the committee during the calendar year. The date and amount of the loans.
  • The full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of each person other than a committee to whom an expenditure was made by the committee or on behalf of the committee within the year in an aggregate amount that exceeds $100. 
  • A statement identifying the public question for which any expenditure was made, including the amount, date and purpose of each expenditure.
  • The full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of each person to whom an expenditure for personal services, salaries, or reimbursed expenses was made within the year in an aggregate amount that exceeds $100, in the case of a candidate’s committee, legislative caucus committee, or political action committee; or exceeds $200, in the case of a regular party committee and that is not otherwise reported, including the amount, date and purpose of the expenditure.

(Burns Ind. Code Ann. § 3-9-5-14)

IOWA

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Definition

Ballot issue means a question, other than the nomination or election of a candidate to a public office, which has been approved by a political subdivision or the general assembly or is required by law to be placed before the voters of the political subdivision by a commissioner of elections, or to be placed before the voters by the state commissioner of elections.

(Iowa Code § 68A.102)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees supporting or opposing ballot issues must file regular contributions and expenditure reports. The report must include:

  • The date the contribution is received.
  • The name and address of each person who has made one or more contributions to the committee if the aggregate amount of contributions (either monetary or in-kind) received from that person in the calendar year exceeds $25, except that the itemization threshold is $200 for a political committee and $50 for a county political committee.
  • The amounts of all in-kind contributions which are accepted by the committee during the reporting period.
  • Description of in-kind contribution and loaned equipment as in-kind contribution.
  • The name and address of the recipient of the expenditure.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.

(Iowa Code § 68A.10, 351 IAC 4.15)

KANSAS

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Definition

Person means any individual, committee, corporation, partnership, trust, organization or association.

What Needs to be Reported

Every person who engages in any activity promoting or opposing the adoption or repeal of any provision of the Kansas constitution and who accepts moneys or property for the purpose of engaging in such activity must file reports to the secretary of state of individual contributions or contributions in kind in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $50 received during the preceding calendar year for such purposes.

The annual report must disclose:

  • The name and address of each contributor for the activity.
  • The amount or value of the individual contribution made.
  • A total value of all contributions received.
  • All expenditures in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $50 from such contributions by showing the amount or value expended to each payee and the purpose of each such expenditure, together with a total value of all expenditures made.

A preliminary report to the secretary of state should be filed fifteen days prior to each election at which a proposed constitutional amendment is submitted. The report should include:

  • The name and address of each individual contributor, together with the amount contributed or contributed in-kind in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $50.
  • The expenditures in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $50 from such contributions by showing the amount paid to each payee and the purpose of the expenditure.

A supplemental report in the same format as the preliminary report must be filed with the secretary of state within fifteen days after any election on a constitutional proposition where contributed funds are received and expended in opposing or promoting such proposition.

(K.S.A. § 25-4180)

KENTUCKY

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Definition

Political issues committee means three or more persons joining together to advocate or oppose a constitutional amendment or public question which appears on the ballot if that committee receives or expends money in excess of $1,000.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. § 121.015)

What Needs to be Reported

Political issues committees are required to report the same information as required of a campaign committee. The following information must be disclosed:

  • The amount of each contribution.
  • The date each contribution was received.
  • For contributions from permanent committees (PACs), regardless of amount, the name, business address, and description of the interest represented.
  • For contributions from individuals in excess of $100, the name, address, occupation and employer.
  • The name of every person or firm the expenditure was made.
  • The address of the payee.
  • The occupation, if the payee is an individual.
  • The date of the expenditure.
  • The amount of expenditure.
  • The type of receipt.
  • Expenditures over $25 must be made by check and the treasurer must keep a receipted bill for each expenditure.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. § § 121.160, 121.180)

LOUISIANA

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Definition

Political committee means two or more persons, other than a husband and wife, and any corporation organized for the primary purpose of supporting or opposing one or more candidates, propositions, recalls of a public officer, or political parties, which accepts contributions in the name of the committee, or makes expenditures from committee funds or in the name of the committee, or makes a transfer of funds to or receives a transfer of funds from another committee, or receives or makes loans in an aggregate amount in excess of $500 within any calendar year.

Person means any individual, partnership, limited liability company or corporation, association, labor union, political committee, corporation, or other legal entity, including their subsidiaries.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 18:1484)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees must file regular campaign finance disclosure reports.

  • Contributions received during the reporting period must include the following:
  • The full name and address of each person who has made one or more contributions during the reporting period.
  • The aggregate amount of such contributions, except in-kind contributions, from each person, and the date and amount of each such contribution.
  • The aggregate amount of all contributions, other than in-kind contributions, received and accepted during the reporting period.
  • The aggregate valuation of in-kind contributions received during the reporting period.
  • The date and amount of each loan made or received from any person or political committee during the reporting period, together with the full name and address of the lender, of the recipient of the proceeds of the loan, and of any person who makes any type of security agreement binding himself or his property, directly or indirectly, for the repayment of all or any part of the loan.
  • The date and amount of each anonymous contribution received and the date each was transmitted to the state during the reporting period and the total amount of such anonymous contributions received and transmitted during the reporting period.
  • The full name and address of each person to whom an expenditure has been made during the reporting period.
  • The amount and date of the expenditure.
  • A description of the purpose as it relates to the expenditure.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § § 18:1495.5, 18:1491.7)

MAINE

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Definition

Ballot question committee means a person that receives contributions or makes expenditures aggregating in excess of $5,000 for the purpose of initiating or influencing a campaign, other than a campaign for the nomination or election of a candidate.

(21-A M.R.S. § 1052)

What Needs to be Reported

A report must contain the following information:

  • The identification of ballot question campaigns that the committee intends to initiate or influence.
  • An itemization of each expenditure made to initiate or influence any campaign, including:
  • The date of the expenditure.
  • The payee of the expenditure.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The name of each referendum or initiated petition supported or opposed by the expenditure. If expenditures were made to a person, the report must contain the name of the person; the amount spent by that person on behalf of the committee, including, but not limited to, expenditures made during the signature gathering phase; the reason for the expenditure; and the date of the expenditure. The commission may specify the categories of expenditures that are to be reported to enable the commission to closely monitor the activities of committees.
  • An itemization of each contribution of more than $50 made to or received by the committee for the purpose of initiating or influencing a campaign, including the name, occupation, places of business and mailing address of each contributor and the amount and date of the contribution.
  • Any funds deposited into or transferred into the campaign account, including but not limited to funds from the general treasury of an organization that is required to establish a committee.
  • Any operational expenses and any other payments made from the campaign account.

(21-A M.R.S. § 1060)

MARYLAND

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Definition

Ballot issue committee means a political committee that is formed to promote the success or defeat of a question or prospective question to be submitted to a vote at an election.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. § 1-101)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot issue committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee. A report should include the following contribution disclosures:

  • The date that the contribution was received.
  • The amount of contribution.
  • The name of the contributor.
  • The address of the contributor.
  • The source of the contribution.
  • If an individual makes aggregate contributions of $500 or more to a political committee, the individual must provide employer and occupation information.
  • The aggregate amount of contributions received to date from the contributor during the election cycle.
  • For a political party central committee or a legislative party caucus committee, detailed information on administrative donations received.
  • If an in-kind contribution, a description of the in-kind contribution.

A report should include all expenditures made by or on behalf of the campaign finance entity during the reporting period:

  • The amount or value.
  • The date of the receipt of expenditure.
  • The name and residential address of the person from whom the contribution was received or to whom the expenditure was made.
  • A description of the asset received or the purpose for which the expenditure was made.
  • The occupation and employer should also be included, to the extent practicable, for individuals who contribute a cumulative amount of $500 or more during the election cycle.

Out-of-state political committees must disclose all expenditures made in the state by the out-of-state political committee. A report must include:

  • The amount and date of each political disbursement made by the person in the state or to influence a state election during the period covered by the report.
  • The identity of each person that made cumulative donations of $10,000 or more to the participating organization during the period covered by the report.
  • Any other information required by the state board concerning the political disbursements and donations of the participating organization.

A political committee may file an Affidavit of Limited Contributions and Expenditures if the committee did not receive or spend more than $1,000 in the aggregate, during the reporting period.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. §§ 13-304, 13-221)

MASSACHUSETTS

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Definition

Ballot question committee means a political committee which receives or expends money or other things of value for the purpose of favoring or opposing the adoption or rejection of a specific question or questions submitted to the voters including, without limitation, a charter change, an initiative or referendum question or a constitutional amendment.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, § 1)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot issue committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee. The report must disclose:

  • The amount of money on hand at the beginning of the reporting period.
  • The full name and residential address of each person who has made a contribution in the reporting period. If the aggregate of all contributions received from a contributor is in excess of $50, then the following must be reported:
  • Amount or value.
  • Date of the contribution
  • Total of all contributions listed
  • In addition, each report required to be filed under the provisions of this section shall also include the occupation and name of employer or employers for each person whose contribution or contributions in the aggregate equals or exceeds the sum of $200 within any calendar year.
  • The total amount or value of contributions made in the reporting period, not otherwise reported.
  • The name and address of each candidate or political committee from which was received any money or anything of value in a reporting period, together with the amount or value thereof and the date received.
  • The name and address of the principal officers of any trust, foundation and association from which was received a contribution.
  • The amount or value and date of each loan to or from any person, in the reporting period, together with the name and residential address of the lender and endorser, if any, listed alphabetically.
  • The total sum of all contributions received in the reporting period.
  • The full name and address, listed alphabetically, of each person to whom an expenditure is made, in the reporting period. If the aggregate of all expenditures is made in excess of $50, the report must include the amount or value, date and purpose of each expenditure.
  • The total of all expenditures listed.
  • The total amount or value of expenditures made in the reporting period, not otherwise reported.
  • The name and address of each candidate or political committee to which was transferred any money or anything of value, in the reporting period, together with the amount or value and the date of such transfer.
  • The total sum of expenditures made in the reporting period.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, § 18)

MICHIGAN

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Definition

Ballot question means a question that is submitted or is intended to be submitted to a popular vote at an election whether or not it qualifies for the ballot.

Ballot question committee means a committee acting in support of, or in opposition to, the qualification, passage or defeat of a ballot question but that does not receive contributions or make expenditures or contributions for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of the voters for or against the nomination or election of a candidate.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 169.202, 169.203)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot issue committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee. The report must disclose:

  • The amount and date of contributions.
  • The donor’s full name and street address.
  • The amount contributed, the date on which each contribution was received, and the cumulative amount contributed by that individual.
  • The occupation, employer, and principal place of business must be stated if the individual’s cumulative contributions are more than $100.
  • The full name and street address of each person to whom expenditures or other disbursements totaling more than $50 were made.
  • The amount of each separate expenditure or disbursement to each person during the period covered by the campaign statement.
  • The purpose of the expenditure or disbursement.
  • The full name and street address of the person providing the consideration for which any expenditure or disbursement was made if different from the payee.
  • The itemization regardless of amount of each expenditure made to or on behalf of another committee or ballot question.
  • The cumulative amount of expenditures for or against that ballot question for an election cycle.
  • An expenditure made in support of more than one ballot question, must be apportioned reasonably among the ballot questions.
  • A receipt must be obtained for each expenditure made by the committee (a canceled check is acceptable).

Every ballot question committee must file a 48 hour or late contribution reports if the following two conditions are met:

  • The committee receives a single or cumulative contribution of $2,500 or more received from the same person between the last filed campaign statement and the third day before an election.
  • The committee has made an expenditure to support or oppose a ballot question on the ballot during the same late contribution report period.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 169.244)

MINNESOTA

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Definition

Ballot question means a question or proposition that is placed on the ballot and that may be voted on by all voters of the state.

Ballot question political committee means a political committee that makes only expenditures to promote or defeat a ballot question and disbursements permitted.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.01)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot question committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee. The report must disclose:

  • The amount of liquid assets on hand at the beginning of the reporting period.
  • Any contributions in the aggregate over $500 to a ballot question committee or fund must be listed with the name, address and employer of the donor, or occupation if self-employed, and the registration number if registered with the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board, and the date and amount of the contribution.
    • A donation in-kind must be disclosed at its fair market value. An approved expenditure must be listed as a donation in kind. A donation in kind is considered consumed in the reporting period in which it is received.
    • The names of contributors must be listed in alphabetical order. Contributions from the same contributor must be listed under the same name.
  • The sum of contributions to the reporting entity during the reporting period.
  • Each loan made or received by the reporting entity within the year in aggregate in excess of $200, continuously reported until repaid or forgiven, together with the name, address, occupation, principal place of business, if any, and registration number if registered with the board of the lender and any endorser and the date and amount of the loan.
  • Each receipt over $200 during the reporting period not otherwise listed.
  • The sum of all receipts of the reporting entity during the reporting period.
  • The name, address, and registration number if registered with the board of each individual or association to whom aggregate expenditures, approved expenditures, independent expenditure, and ballot question expenditures have been made by or on behalf of the reporting entity within the year in excess of $200, together with the amount, date, and purpose of each expenditure, including an explanation of how the expenditure was used and identification of the ballot question that the expenditure was intended to promote or defeat and an indication of whether the expenditure was to promote or to defeat the ballot question.
  • The sum of all expenditures made by or on behalf of the reporting entity during the reporting period.
  • The amount and nature of an advance of credit incurred by the reporting entity, continuously reported until paid or forgiven.
  • The name, address, and registration number (if registered with the board) of each political committee, political fund, principal campaign committee, local candidate, or party unit to which contributions have been made that aggregate in excess of $200 within the year and the amount and date of each contribution.
  • The name, address, and registration number (if registered with the board) of each individual or association to whom noncampaign disbursements have been made that aggregate in excess of $200 within the year by or on behalf of the reporting entity and the amount, date, and purpose of each noncampaign disbursement, including an explanation of how the expenditure was used.
  • The sum of all noncampaign disbursements made within the year by or on behalf of the reporting entity.
  • The name and address of a nonprofit corporation that provides administrative assistance to a political committee or political fund, the type of administrative assistance provided, and the aggregate fair market value of each type of assistance provided to the political committee or political fund during the reporting period.
  • Legislative, statewide, and judicial candidates, party units, and political committees and funds must itemize contributions that in aggregate within the year more than $500 for ballot questions on reports submitted to the board. The itemization must include the date on which the contribution was received, the individual or association that provided the contribution, and the address of the contributor. Additionally, the itemization for a donation in kind must provide a description of the item or service received. Contributions that are less than the itemization amount must be reported as an aggregate total.
  • Legislative, statewide, and judicial candidates, party units, political committees and funds, and committees to promote or defeat a ballot question must itemize expenditures and noncampaign disbursements that in aggregate exceed $200 in a calendar year on reports submitted to the board. The itemization must include the date on which the committee made or became obligated to make the expenditure or disbursement, the name and address of the vendor that provided the service or item purchased, and a description of the service or item purchased, including an explanation of how the expenditure was used. Expenditures and noncampaign disbursements must be listed on the report alphabetically by vendor.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.20)

MISSISSIPPI

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Definition

Political committee means any committee, party, club, association, political action committee, campaign committee or other groups of persons or affiliated organizations that receives contributions aggregating in excess of $200 during a calendar year or that makes expenditures aggregating in excess of $200 during a calendar year for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of voters for or against balloted measures.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-801)

What Needs to be Reported

All political committees or individuals which support or oppose a ballot issue must report the following information:

  • The total amount of contributions received during the period covered by the financial report.
  • The total amount of expenditures made during the period covered by the financial report.
  • The cumulative amount of those totals for each measure.
  • The balance of cash and cash equivalents on hand at the beginning and the end of the period covered by the financial report.
  • The total amount of contributions received during the period covered by the financial report from persons who contributed $200 or less, and the cumulative amount of that total for each measure.
  • The total amount of contributions received during the period covered by the financial report from persons who contributed $200 or more, and the cumulative amount of that total for each measure.
  • The name and street address of each person from whom a contribution(s) exceeding $200 was received during the period covered by the financial report, together with the amount contributed, the date of receipt and the cumulative amount contributed by that person for each measure.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-17-53)

Missouri

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Definition

Ballot measure means any proposal submitted or intended to be submitted to qualified voters for their approval or rejection, including any proposal submitted by initiative petition, referendum petition, or by the general assembly or any local governmental body having authority to refer proposals to the voter.

Committee means a person or any combination of persons, who accepts contributions or makes expenditures for the primary or incidental purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of voters for or against the qualification, passage or defeat of any ballot measure.

(Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.011)

What Needs to be Reported

All committees whose sole purpose is to support or oppose the qualification and passage of one or more particular ballot measures in an election have the same reporting requirements as any other committee. The report must disclose:

  • Total amount of all monetary contributions received which can be identified in the committee’s records by name and address of each contributor.
  • Total amount of all anonymous contributions accepted.
  • Total amount of all monetary contributions received through fundraising events or activities from participants whose names and addresses were not obtained with such contributions, with an attached statement or copy of the statement describing each fund-raising event.
  • Total dollar value of all in-kind contributions received.
  • A separate listing by name and address and employer, or occupation if self-employed or notation of retirement, of each person from whom the committee received contributions, in money or any other thing of value, aggregating more than $100, together with the date and amount of each such contribution.
  • A listing of each loan received by name and address of the lender and date and amount of the loan. For each loan of more than one hundred dollars, a separate statement shall be attached setting forth the name and address of the lender and each person liable directly, indirectly or contingently, and the date, amount and terms of the loan.
  • The total dollar amount of expenditures made by check drawn on the committee’s depository.
  • The total dollar amount of expenditures made in cash.
  • The total dollar value of all in-kind expenditures made.
  • The amount of expenditures for or against a ballot measure during the period covered and the cumulative amount of expenditures for or against that ballot measure.
    • For the purpose of disclosure reports, expenditures made in support of more than one ballot measure must be apportioned reasonably among the ballot measures. In apportioning expenditures to each ballot measure, committees need not include expenditures for maintaining a permanent office, such as expenditures for salaries of regular staff, office facilities and equipment or other expenditures not designed to support or oppose any particular ballot measures; however, all such expenditures must be listed.

(Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.041)

MONTANA

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Definition

Ballot issue means a proposal submitted to the people at an election for their approval or rejection, including but not limited to an initiative, referendum, proposed constitutional amendment, recall question, school levy question, bond issue question, or ballot question.

Ballot issue committee means a political committee specifically organized to support or oppose a ballot issue.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-1-101)

What Needs to be Reported

Ballot issue committees must disclose the following information concerning contributions and expenditures:

  • The full name, mailing address, occupation, and employer, if any, of each person who has made aggregate contributions, other than loans, of $50 or more to the ballot issue committee.
  • The aggregate amount of contributions made by that person within the reporting period and the total amount of contributions made by that person for all reporting periods.
  • The total sum of individual contributions made to the committee.
  • Each loan from any person during the reporting period, together with the full names, mailing addresses, occupations, and employers, if any, of the lender and endorsers, if any, and the date and amount of each loan.
  • The amount and nature of debts and obligations owed to a committee.
  • The full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of each person to whom expenditures have been made by the committee during the reporting period, including the amount, date and purpose of that expenditure and the total amount of expenditures made to each person.
  • The full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of each person to whom an expenditure for personal services, salaries and reimbursed expenses has been made, including the amount, date and purpose of that expenditure and the total amount of expenditures made to each person.
  • The total sum of expenditures made by a committee during the reporting period.
  • The name of any person to whom a loan was made during the reporting period, including the full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of that person and the full names, mailing addresses, occupations and principal places of business, if any, of the endorsers, if any, and the date and amount of each loan.
  • The amount and nature of debts and obligations owed by a ballot issue committee.
  • Any other information that may be required by the commissioner to fully disclose the disposition of funds used to support or oppose issues.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-37-229)

NEBRASKA

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Definition

Ballot question means any question which is submitted, or which is intended to be submitted, to a popular vote at an election, including, but not limited to, a question submitted or intended to be submitted by way of initiative, referendum, recall or judicial retention, whether or not it qualifies for the ballot. Ballot question shall also mean any question which has been submitted to a popular vote at an election as a result of legislative action or adoption of a resolution by a political subdivision to place an issue or issues on the ballot.

Ballot question committee means any committee acting in support of, or in opposition to, the qualification, passage, or defeat of a ballot question but which does not receive contributions or make expenditures or contributions for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of the voters for or against the nomination or election of a candidate.

(R.R.S. Neb. §§ 49-1405, 49-1406)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot question committee must disclose:

  • The full name of each individual from whom contributions totaling more than $250 are received during the period covered by the report, together with the individual’s street address, the amount contributed, the date on which each contribution was received, and the cumulative amount contributed by that individual for the election period. The name of each committee which is listed as a contributor must include the full name of the committee’s treasurer. 
  • The full name and street address of each person to whom expenditures totaling more than $250 were made, together with the date and amount of each separate expenditure to each such person during the period covered by the campaign statement.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The full name and street address of the person providing the consideration for which any expenditure was made if different from the payee.
  • The amount and the date of expenditures for or against a ballot question during the period covered by the campaign statement and the cumulative amount of expenditures for or against that ballot question for the election period.
  • The total amount of funds disbursed by a separate segregated political fund, by state, for the purpose of supporting or opposing candidates and committees in elections in states other than Nebraska and candidates for federal office, including independent expenditures made in such elections.    

(R.R.S. Neb. §§ 49-1455, 49-1457, 49-1479.02, 49-1433.01, Nebraska Admin. Code Title 4, Ch. 10)

NEVADA

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Definition

Committee for political action (PAC) means:

  • Any group of natural persons or entities that solicits or receives contributions from any other person, group or entity and:
  • Makes or intends to make expenditures, designed to affect the outcome of any primary election, general election, special election or questin on the ballot.
  • Any business or social organization, corporation, partnership, association, trust, unincorporated organization or labor union:
  • Which has as its primary purpose affecting the outcome of any primary election, general election, special election or any question on the ballot and for that purpose receives contributions in excess of $1,500 in a calendar year or makes expenditures in excess of $1,500 in a calendar year. or
  • Which does not have as its primary purpose affecting the outcome of any primary election, general election, special election or any question on the ballot, but for the purpose of affecting the outcome of any election or question on the ballot receives contributions in excess of $5,000 in a calendar year or makes independent expenditures in excess of $5,000 in a calendar year.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.0055)

What Needs to be Reported

Any PAC which advocates the passage or defeat of a ballot question and receives a contribution or makes an expenditure in excess of $1,000 must file reports. The report must include the following information:

  • The name and address of the contributor and the date on which the contribution was received must be included on the report for each contribution in excess of $1,000 and contributions which a contributor has made cumulatively in excess of $1,000 since the beginning of the current reporting period.
  • The name and address of the payee and the date on which the expenditure was made must include on the report for each expenditure in excess of $100. In addition, the report must include:
  • Expense type.
  • Category of expense.
  • Amount of expenditure.
  • The total of all expenses incurred during the period which are $100 or less.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.140)

NEW HAMPSHIRE

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Definition

Political committee means:

  • Any organization of two or more persons that promotes the success or defeat of a measure, including the political committee of a political party.
  • Any segregated fund established by any organization the purpose of which is to promote the success or defeat of a measure.
  • Any organization that has as its major purpose to promote the success or defeat of a measure and whose receipts or expenditures total $2,500 or more in a calendar year for that purpose.
  • Any organization that does not have as its major purpose to promote the success or defeat of a measure but that makes expenditures that total $5,000 or more in a calendar year.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:2)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees supporting or opposing ballot issues must file regular contributions and expenditure reports. The report must include:

  • The full name and postal address of the contributor in alphabetical order.
  • The amount and date the contribution was received.
  • The aggregate total for each election for each contributor of over $200. Any listing that exceeds an individual’s aggregate total of $200 for each election must be accompanied by the contributor’s occupation including official job title, the name of the contributor’s employer, and the city or town of the contributor’s principal place of business, if any.
  • An itemized statement showing each expenditure exceeding $50 and it includes:
    • The full name and postal address of the payee or promise of payment.
    • The date paid or obligated.
    • The election for which the expenditure was made.
    • The specific nature and amount of each expenditure since the date of the registration.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:6, 664:6-a, 664.7)

NEW JERSEY

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Definition

Public question means any question, proposition or referendum required by the legislative or governing body of this state or any of its political subdivisions to be submitted by referendum procedure to the voters of the state or political subdivision for decision at elections.

Political committee means any two or more persons acting jointly, or any corporation, partnership, or any other incorporated or unincorporated association which is organized to, or does, aid or promote the nomination, election or defeat of any candidate or candidates for public office, or which is organized to, or does, aid or promote the passage or defeat of a public question in any election, if the persons, corporation, partnership or incorporated or unincorporated association raises or expends $2,400 or more to so aid or promote the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate or candidates or the passage or defeat of a public question.

(N.J. Stat. §§ 19:44A-3, 19:25-1.7)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees supporting or opposing ballot issues must file regular contributions and expenditure reports.

  • A contribution in an amount of more than $300 must be reported by providing the following information:
  • The date the contribution was received or, if more than one contribution was received in the reporting period, the dates the aggregate contributions were received.
  • The name and mailing address of the contributor.
  • If the contributor is an individual, the occupation of the individual and the name and mailing address of the individual's employer.
  • The amount of the contribution, or amount of aggregate contributions in the reporting period.
  • The total amount of all contributions received from the contributor in the election to date.
  • Any expenditures must be disclosed, regardless of amount. An expenditure must be reported by providing the following information:
  • The date the expenditure was made.
  • The full name and address of the payee.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The amount of the expenditure.
  • The number of the check.

Political committees may be required to disclose additional information before an election:

  • Any political committee that receives contributions from a single source aggregating more than $1,900 between the thirteenth day prior to the election and the date of the election must file a report within 48 hours. That report should include:
  • The amount and date the contribution was received.
  • The name and mailing address of the contributor. If the contributor is an individual, the occupation of the individual and the name and mailing address of the individual's employer.
  • The name of the political committee.
  • Any political committee that makes an expenditure or aggregate expenditures that total in excess of $1,900 between the thirteenth day prior to the election and the date of the election must file a report within 48 hours. That report should include:
  • The name of the person, firm, or organization to whom or which the expenditure was paid.
  • The amount and purpose of the expenditure.
  • The name of the recipient political committee, if any.
  • The name and mailing address of the person, firm or recipient; or organization to whom or which the expenditure was paid or given.
  • The amount and purpose of the expenditure.

(N.J. Admin. Code §§ 19:25-12.2, 19:25-8.6A, 19:25-8.9, 19:25-10.10)

NEW MEXICO

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Definition

Ballot question means a constitutional amendment or other question submitted to the voters in an election.

Political committee means:

  • A political party.
  • A legislative caucus committee.
  • An association that consists of two or more persons whose primary purpose is to make contributions to candidates, campaign committees or political committees or make coordinated expenditures or any combination thereof.
  • An association that consists of two or more persons whose primary purpose is to make independent expenditures and that has received more than $5,000 in contributions or made independent expenditures of more than $5,000 in the election cycle.

(N.M. Stat. Ann. § 1-19-26)

What Needs to be Reported

Any political committee which advocates the passage or defeat of a ballot proposal or measure must file regular campaign finance disclosure reports. The disclosure statements must include:

  • The name and address of the person or entity to whom a contribution was received, except as provided for anonymous contributions or contributions received from special events; provided that for contributors, the name of the entity or the first and last names of any individual must be the full name of the entity or individual, and initials only will not constitute a full name unless that is the complete legal name.
  • The occupation, name and type of business, as applicable, of any individual or entity making contributions of $200 or more in the aggregate per election.
  • The amount of the contribution or value thereof.
  • The date the contribution was received.
  • The amount of each unpaid debt and the identity of the person to whom the debt is owed.
  • The full name and address of the person or entity to whom an expenditure was made.
  • The amount of the expenditure or value thereof.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The date that the expenditure was made.
  • The opening and closing cash balance for the bank accounts maintained by the reporting individual during the reporting period and the name of the financial institution for each account.
  • The amount of each unpaid debt and the identity of the person to whom the debt is owed.

(N.M. Stat. Ann. § 1-19-31)

NEW YORK

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Definition

Political committee means any corporation aiding or promoting and any committee, political club or combination of one or more persons operating or co-operating to aid or to promote the success or defeat of any ballot proposal.

(NY CLS Elec § 14-102)

What Needs to be Reported

Any political committee which advocates the passage or defeat of a ballot proposal or measure must file reports. The disclosure statements must include:

  • The dollar amount of any receipt, contribution or transfer, or the fair market value of any receipt, contribution or transfer, which is other than of money.
  • The name and address of the transferor, contributor or person from whom received, and if the transferor, contributor or person is a political committee, then the name of and the political unit represented by the committee.
  • The date of its receipt.
  • Any statement reporting a loan need to be given as evidence of indebtedness.

Receipts and contributions aggregating not more than $99 from any one contributor need not be specifically accounted for by separate items in said statements.

(NY CLS Elec § 14-102)

NORTH CAROLINA

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Definition

Referendum committee means:

  • A combination of two or more individuals such as a committee, association, organization or other entity or a combination of two or more business entities, corporations, insurance companies, labor unions or professional associations such as a committee, association, organization or other entity the primary purpose of which is to support or oppose the passage of any referendum on the ballot.
  • If the entity qualifies as a referendum committee, it continues to be a referendum committee if it receives contributions or makes expenditures or maintains assets or liabilities. A referendum committee ceases to exist when it winds up its operations, disposes of its assets, and files its final report.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.6)

What Needs to be Reported

Referendum committees are required to report all contributions and expenditures, along with the specific purpose of the expenditure.

All contributors contributing over $50 cumulatively for the election must be reported with the contributor’s name, address and occupational information. Contributions received from an individual that has not exceeded $50 cumulatively since the day after the last election are not required to be reported with the contributor’s name, address or occupational information. The date, amount, payment method, account, and election sum-to-date shall be disclosed for all contributions, regardless of amount.

Any expenditure that is made for media purposes must be paid with a verifiable form of payment and must be disclosed with the name of the payee, the address of the payee, the date of the expenditure and the specific purpose of the expenditure. In addition, the amount this payee has been paid since the last election must also be reported. All expenditures that are over $50 may not be paid with cash and must be disclosed with the name of the payee, the address of the payee, the date of the expenditure, and the specific purpose of the expenditure. Election sum-to-date totals for the payee must also be included. Expenditures for non-media purposes that are less than $50 may be shown as an aggregate amount and may be made in cash. The name of the payee is not required to be disclosed. However, the date of the expenditure, the specific amount of each expenditure, and the purpose of each expenditure must be included.

A referendum committee that receives a contribution of $1,000 or more after the last report and before the election on the referendum must disclose it within 48 hours. The report must identify the source and amount of such funds.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.11)

NORTH DAKOTA

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Definition

A measure committee, including an initiative or referendum sponsoring committee, is an organization which solicits or receives contributions or makes expenditures for the purpose of aiding or opposing a measure sought to be voted upon by the voters of the state. This includes any activities undertaken for the purpose of drafting an initiative or referendum petition, seeking approval of the secretary of state for the circulation of a petition, or seeking approval of the submitted petitions.

(N.D. Cent. Code, § 16.1-08.1-01)

What Needs to be Reported

A measure committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee. The report must disclose:

  • Name of each contributor.
  • Complete mailing address of each contributor.
  • The amount contributed.
  • The principal occupation of the contributor, the threshold for reporting the identity of the contributor is $50. “Principal occupation of the contributor” means the contributor’s job title or profession and employer’s name or employer’s specific field of business activity.
  • The date such contribution was received.
  • The total sum of all contributions to date must be plainly exhibited.
  • The name and complete mailing address of each payee.
  • The amount paid.
  • The purpose of expenditure.
  • The date such payment was made.
  • The total sum of all expenditures to date.
  • If the expenditure is to a financial institution for revolving credit or a reimbursement for a payment to a financial institution for revolving credit, the statement should also include a specific itemization of the goods and services purchased with the revolving credit.
  • If the obligation is for more than one good or service, the statement shall include a specific itemization of the obligation so as to provide a reasonable understanding of the obligation.

A political committee that receives a contribution or transfer of funds of $1,000 or more received before an election but after the period covered by the last report must disclose the late contribution within 48 hours.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.11, N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.9, N.D. Cent. Code, § 16.1-08.1-03.5)

OHIO

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Definition

Ballot issue political action committee is created when there is a filing by the circulator or committee in charge of an initiative or referendum petition, or supplementary petition for additional signatures, for the submission of a constitutional amendment, proposed law, section or item of any law of the appointment of a treasurer.

(Ohio Admin. Code 111:2-3-10)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot issue political action committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political action committee (PAC). The report must disclose:

  • The full name and address of each ballot issue political action committee.
  • The registration number assigned to the ballot issue political action committee.
  • The date of the election and whether it was or will be a general, primary or special election.
  • A statement of contributions received which shall include the following information:
  • The month, day and year of the contribution.
  • The full name and address of each person, political party, campaign committee, legislative campaign fund, political action committee or political contributing entity from whom contributions are received and the registration number assigned to the political action committee.
  • If a ballot issue political action committee receives a contribution from an individual that exceeds $100, the name of the individual’s current employer, if any, or, if the individual is self-employed, the individual’s occupation and the name of the individual’s business, if any.
  • A description of the contribution received, if other than money.
  • The value in dollars and cents of the contribution.
  • The date of the election and whether it was or will be a general, primary or special election.
  • The month, day, and year of the expenditure.
  • The full name and address of each person, political party, campaign committee, legislative campaign fund, political action committee or political contributing entity to whom the expenditure was made, and the registration number assigned to the political action committee.
  • The object or purpose for which the expenditure was made.
  • The amount of each expenditure.
  • A separately itemized account of all contributions and expenditures regardless of the amount, except a receipt of a contribution from a person in the sum of $25 or less at one social or fund-raising activity and a receipt of a contribution from amounts deducted from the wages and salaries of employees is twenty-five dollars or less aggregated in a calendar year.
  • An account of the total contributions from each social or fund-raising activity shall include a description of and the value of each in-kind contribution received at that activity from any person who made one or more such contributions whose aggregate value exceeded $250 dollars, together with the expenses incurred and paid in connection with that activity.
  • Contributions that are other income shall be itemized separately from all other contributions.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.10)

OKLAHOMA

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Definition

Ballot measure means an initiative, referendum, legislative referendum, legislative initiative, state question or any proposition or measure submitted to voters for their approval or rejection at a statewide election.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 1-1-2)

What Needs to be Reported

Any entity may engage in issue advocacy, and it is not subject to reporting requirements. However, issue advocacy may become an electioneering communication if it refers to one or more ballot measures and the communication is made within sixty days before a general or special election; or 30 days before a primary or runoff primary election. 

See the “Electioneering communications” tab for more information.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 1-1-2)

OREGON

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Definition

Petition committee is a committee formed by the chief petitioners of an initiative, referendum, or recall petition. A petition committee must be designated to support only one initiative, referendum, or recall petition.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.005)

What Needs to be Reported

A petition committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political action committee (PAC). The report must disclose contributions, receipts, expenditures and any other disbursements and it should include the following information: 

  • The name, occupation and address of each person, and the name and address of each political committee or petition committee, which contributed an aggregate amount of more than $100 in a calendar year. It should also include:
  • The date received.
  • The contributor type (political committee, individual, labor organization).
  • The contribution type (cash, in-kind, loan). 
  • The amount of the contribution.
  • For contributors of $100 or more aggregate in the calendar year, the report must also include the contributor's name; address; occupation; and employer (if applicable). Note that if a committee receives a contribution without the required occupation information, it must make a written request to the contributor for the information within seven days of receiving the contribution.
  • The total amount of other contributions as a single item but shall specify how those contributions were obtained.
  • An expenditure must disclose:
    • Payee and payee type.
    • Payment method.
    • Payable subtypes.
    • The amount and purpose of each expenditure made in an aggregate amount of more than $100 to a payee, the name or, if applicable, the business name of the payee of the expenditure, and the city, or county if the payee is not located in a city, and state in which the payee is located.
    • The total amount of other expenditures as a single item.

If a committee does not expect to receive or spend a total of more than $3,500 in a calendar year, a Certificate of Limited Contributions and Expenditures may be filed not later than seven calendar days after receiving the first contribution or making the first expenditure in a calendar year.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.083)

PENNSYLVANIA

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Definition

Question means the statement of a constitutional amendment or other proposition which is submitted to a popular vote at any election.

(25 P.S. § 3031.1)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees and other persons must report expenditures when expressly advocating for or against constitutional amendments or ballot questions, proposed by the general assembly. Each report should include the following information:

  • Each expenditure, the date made, the full name and address of the person to whom made and the purpose for which such expenditure was made.
  • Any unpaid debts and liabilities, with the nature and amount of each, the date incurred and the full name and address of the person owed.
  • Any unexpended balance of contributions or other receipts appearing from the last account filed.

(25 P.S. § 3246)

RHODE ISLAND

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Definition

Ballot question means any question, charter change, constitutional amendment, referendum or voter-initiated petition placed on any state, district, city, town or municipal ballot for a general or special election.

Ballot question advocate means:

  • For purposes of referenda, any exempt nonprofit or any organization.
  • For all other ballot questions, any person making an expenditure with a cumulative total that exceeds $1,000 in a calendar year for ballot question advocacy on a particular ballot question.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25-3)

What Needs to be Reported

Every ballot question advocate must file periodic reports with the name and address of the ballot question advocate, including any other name under which the ballot question advocate conducts ballot question advocacy, and the name and address of the person filing the report. The report must also include:

  • The name, address and, if applicable, the place of employment of each person making a contribution or contributions that in the aggregate exceed $1,800 per election cycle to a ballot question advocate for purposes of ballot question advocacy and the amount contributed by each person or source; provided, however, this information shall be reported only if:
    • The contributions received by a ballot question advocate are solicited in any way, including by written, electronic or verbal means, by the ballot question advocate specifically for ballot question advocacy. or
    • The contributions were specifically designated by the contributor for ballot question advocacy. or
    • The ballot question advocate knew or had reason to know that the contributor intended or expected that the majority of the contributions be used for ballot question advocacy.
  • The name and address of every person or entity receiving an expenditure for ballot question advocacy, which in the aggregate exceeds $100, the amount of each expenditure for ballot question advocacy, and the total amount of expenditures for ballot question advocacy made by the ballot question advocate as of the last report date.
  • A statement of the position of the ballot question advocate in support of or opposition to the ballot question.
  • The names and addresses of all identified members or endorsing organizations, corporations, and/or associations that authorize the ballot question advocate to represent to the public that they support the positions of the ballot question advocate.
  • The name and address of at least one of the officers of the ballot question advocate, if any, or one individual that is responsible for the ballot question advocate’s compliance. The report must also include a statement identifying the referendum that the electioneering communication is intended to promote the success or defeat and affirm under penalty of false statement that the expenditure is not coordinated with the campaign in question and provide any information that the board of elections requires.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25.2-5)

SOUTH CAROLINA

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Definition

Ballot measure means a referendum, proposition, or measure submitted to voters for their approval.

Ballot measure committee means:

  • An association, club, an organization, or a group of persons which, to influence the outcome of a ballot measure, receives contributions or makes expenditures in excess of $2,500 in the aggregate during an election cycle.
  • A person, other than an individual, who, to influence the outcome of a ballot measure, makes contributions aggregating at least $50,000 during an election cycle to or at the request of a ballot measure committee.
  • A person, other than an individual, who, to influence the outcome of a ballot measure, makes independent expenditures aggregating $2,500 or more during an election cycle.

(S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1300)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot measure committee must file reports detailing contributions and expenditures. The report must contain the following information:

  • The total amount of contributions accepted by the ballot measure committee.
  • The name and address of each person making a contribution of more than $100 and the amount and date of receipt of each contribution.
  • The total amount of expenditures made by or on behalf of the ballot measure committee.
  • The name and address of each person to whom an expenditure is made from campaign funds, including the date, amount, purpose, and beneficiary of the expenditure.

(S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1309)

SOUTH DAKOTA

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Definition

Ballot question means any referendum, initiative, proposed constitutional amendment or other measure submitted to voters at any election.

Ballot question committee means a person or entity that raises, collects or disburses contributions:

  • As a proponent for the placement of one or more ballot questions on the ballot.
  • As an opponent to the placement of any ballot question on the ballot.; or
  • For the adoption or defeat of one or more ballot questions.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-1)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot question committee must disclose all the information received from any entity.

Before making a contribution to a ballot question committee, an entity must provide to the ballot question committee the following:

  • The name of the entity.
  • The mailing address of the entity’s office.
  • The name and mailing address of each owner or each director and officer of the entity.
  • The committee name the contribution was given to, the date, and the amount of the contribution.
  • The name and mailing address of the person authorizing the contribution.

These requirements do not apply to any donated goods or services.

Before contributing more than $10,000 in the aggregate to a ballot question committee, an entity must provide to the ballot question committee a sworn written statement made by the president and treasurer of the entity declaring and affirming, under the penalty of perjury, the following:

  • The name and street address of every person who owns 10% or more of the entity, has provided 10% or more of the entity’s gross receipts, including capital contributions, in the current or preceding year, or has provided 10% or more of the funds being contributed to the ballot question committee.
  • That no part of the contribution was raised or collected by the entity for the purpose of influencing the ballot question.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-19)

TENNESSEE

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Definition

Measure means any proposal submitted to the people of the entire state, or any political subdivision of the state, for their approval or rejection at an election, including any proposed law, act or part of an act of the general assembly, or revision of or amendment to the constitution.

(Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-102)

What Needs to be Reported

A measure committee has the same reporting requirements as a political campaign committee. The report must include:

  • The name of the measure supported or opposed.
  • All the contributions received, must include the full name, complete address, occupation, and employer of each person who contributed a total amount of more than $100 during the period.
  • Contributions totaling $100 or less from a single source during the reporting period may be totaled and reported as a single item.
  • All loans more than $100 from one creditor during a reporting period must be itemized. The information required is the full name and address of each creditor, and the date that the loan was made must be provided.
  • Any endorsers or guarantors for a loan must be listed by full name and address and the amount of the loan which is guaranteed by that person must be disclosed. The outstanding loan balance at the beginning of the reporting period, any additional loans received during that period, any loan payments made during the period and the outstanding loan balance at the end of the reporting period must also be disclosed.
  • Expenditures totaling $100 or less to a single payee during the reporting period are not required to be itemized. These expenditures may be broken down and totaled by general categories (such as gas, food, etc.).
  • Expenditures totaling $100 or more during the reporting period must list the full name, complete address, amount and detailed purpose for each person or organization.
  • All obligations owed at the end of a reporting period for more than $100 to one creditor must be itemized. The itemized information includes the full name and address of the creditor.
  • The outstanding obligations' balance at the beginning of the reporting period, any additional obligations incurred during the period, any payments made to the creditor during the period and the outstanding obligations balance at the end of the reporting period must be disclosed.

(Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 2-10-107, 2-10-105)

TEXAS

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Definition

Measure means a question or proposal submitted in an election for an expression of the voters’ will and includes the circulation and submission of a petition to determine whether a question or proposal is required to be submitted in an election for an expression of the voters.

Candidate contribution means a contribution to a candidate or political committee that is offered or given with the intent that it be used in connection with a campaign for elective office or on a measure. The contribution being made before, during, or after an election does not affect its status as a campaign contribution.

In Texas, ballot measures are legislatively referred constitutional amendments.

(Tex. Elec. Code § 251.001)

What Needs to be Reported

A political committee that supports or opposes one or more identified measures is a specific-purpose political committee and has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee. The report must disclose:

  • The amount of political contributions from each person that in the aggregate exceed $50 and that are accepted during the reporting period by the committee, including the full name and address of the person making the contributions, and the dates of the contributions.
  • The amount of political contributions from each person that are made electronically and that are accepted during the reporting period by the committee, including the full name and address of the person making the contributions, and the dates of the contributions.
  • The amount of loans that are made during the reporting period for campaign or officeholder purposes to the person or committee required to file the report and that in the aggregate exceed $50, the dates the loans are made, the interest rate, the maturity date, the type of collateral for the loans, if any, the full name and address of the person or financial institution making the loans, the full name and address, principal occupation and name of the employer of each guarantor of the loans, the amount of the loans guaranteed by each guarantor, and the aggregate principal amount of all outstanding loans as of the last day of the reporting period.
  • The amount of political expenditures that in the aggregate exceed $100 and that are made during the reporting period, the full name and address of the persons to whom the expenditures are made, and the dates and purposes of the expenditures.
  • The amount of each payment made during the reporting period from a political contribution if the payment is not a political expenditure, the full name and address of the person to whom the payment is made, and the date and purpose of the payment.
  • The total amount or a specific listing of the political contributions of $50 or less accepted and the total amount or a specific listing of the political expenditures of $100 or less made during the reporting period.
  • The total amount of all political contributions accepted, and the total amount of all political expenditures made during the reporting period.
  • The total amount of political contributions accepted, including interest or other income on those contributions, maintained in one or more accounts in which political contributions are deposited as of the last day of the reporting period.
  • Any credit, interest, rebate, refund, reimbursement, or return of a deposit fee resulting from the use of a political contribution or an asset purchased with a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $100. The full name and address of each person from whom an amount is received, the date the amount is received, and the purpose for which the amount is received.
  • Any proceeds of the sale of an asset purchased with a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $100. The full name and address of each person from whom an amount is received, the date the amount is received, and the purpose for which the amount is received.
  • Any investment purchased with a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $100. The full name and address of each person from whom an amount is received, the date the amount is received, and the purpose for which the amount is received.
  • Any other gain from a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $100. The full name and address of each person from whom an amount is received, the date the amount is received, and the purpose for which the amount is received.

A specific-purpose political committee that is required to file reports may file a modified report instead if the committee does not intend to accept political contributions that in the aggregate exceed $500 or to make political expenditures that in the aggregate exceed $500 in connection with the election.

(Tex. Elec. Code §§ 254.031, 254.0612, 254.181, 254.261, 254.151)

UTAH

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Definition

Ballot proposition includes initiatives, referenda, proposed constitutional amendments and any other ballot propositions submitted to the voters.

Political issues committee means an entity, or any group of individuals or entities within or outside this state, whose major purpose is to:

  • Solicit or receive donations from any other person, group or entity to assist in placing a ballot proposition on the ballot, assist in keeping a ballot proposition off the ballot or to advocate that a voter refrain from voting or vote for or vote against any ballot proposition.
  • Make expenditures to expressly advocate for any person to sign or refuse to sign a ballot proposition or incorporation petition or refrain from voting, vote for, or vote against any proposed ballot proposition or an incorporation in an incorporation election.
  • Make expenditures to assist in qualifying or placing a ballot proposition on the ballot or to assist in keeping a ballot proposition off the ballot.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-101)

What Needs to be Reported

Political issue committees (PIC) must report contributions and expenditures. The report must contain the following information:

  • The name of the contributor.
  • The address, the number and street where an individual resides or where a reporting entity has its principal office.
  • A PIC is allowed to report contributions “in the aggregate” if a person does not donate more than $50 to the PIC throughout a calendar year.
  • Once a donor contributes more than $50, he or she must be itemized on the PIC’s report with their name and street address.
  • The date the expenditure was made.
  • Identify where the expenditure falls within a specified list of categories. Expenditures must fall within one of the following categories:
  • Advertising; association expense; campaign expense; constituent services; donations; loans; office; political support; return of a contribution; signature gathering; supplies; travel expenses; or other expenditures that do not fall within a specified category, followed by a description of the expenditure.
  • An optional disclosure is the name of payee.

A report may include the person or entity to whom the expenditure was ultimately disbursed. This means disclosing where money is actually spent (e.g., Office Warehouse). This field is optional but encouraged.

VERMONT

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Definition

Public question means an issue that is before the voters for a binding decision.

(Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 17, § 2901)

What Needs to be Reported

Any entity or committee of two or more individuals (except a political party) that spends $1,000 or more in an election cycle for the purpose of advocating a position on a public question must file a report of its expenditures. The report must contain the following information:

  • Each expenditure listed by amount, date, to whom paid and for what purpose the expenditure was made.
  • Each debt or other obligation incurred during the reporting period, listed by amount, date incurred, to whom owed and for what purpose.
  • All expenditures accepted or spent during the reporting period and during the campaign to date.
  • Expenditures for the reporting period and for the campaign to date must be totaled in an appropriate place on the form.
  • An expenditure must be reported when promised to be paid, when paid, or whenever goods or services are delivered, whichever comes first.

(Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 17, § § 2971, 2963, 2965, 2967, 2966)

VIRGINIA

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Definition

Referendum committee means any organization, person, group of persons or committee, that makes expenditures in a calendar year in excess of:

  • $10,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a statewide referendum.
  • $5,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a referendum being held in two or more counties and cities.
  • $1,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a referendum held in a single county or city.

(Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-945.1)

What Needs to be Reported

A referendum committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee. The referendum committee should itemize each contributor on the report and list the following information: 

  • The name of the contributor listed alphabetically. 
  • The mailing address of the contributor. 
  • The amount of the contribution. 
  • The aggregate amount of contributions from the contributor to date. 
  • The date of the last contribution. 
  • The occupation of the contributor. 
  • The name of his employer or principal business. 
  • The locality where employed or where his business is located.
  • The total number of contributors, each of whom has contributed an aggregate of $100 or less, including cash and in-kind contributions, as of the date of the report, and the total amount of contributions from all such contributors.
  • For each such contributor, other than an individual, the principal type of business and place of business of the contributor will be reported.

The referendum committee should report all expenditure and list the following information:

  • The full name of person or company paid and the complete mailing address of payee (including zip).
  • The description of the item or service purchased.
  • The name of the individual who authorized the expenditure.
  • The date the expense was incurred.
  • The amount of the expenditure.

The report of disbursements shall itemize any expenditure made by credit card payment.

The report must report all loans and, for each loan, must list the following information:

  • The date the loan was made.
  • The name and address of the person making the loan and any person who is a co-borrower, guarantor, or endorser of the loan.
  • The amount of the loan.
  • The date and amount of any repayment of the loan.
  • For any loan or part of a loan that is forgiven by the lender, the amount forgiven listed as both a contribution and loan repayment.

(Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-951.3)

WASHINGTON

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Definition

Ballot proposition means any measure, or any initiative, recall, or referendum proposition proposed to be submitted to the voters of the state or any municipal corporation, political subdivision, or other voting constituency from and after the time when the proposition has been initially filed with the appropriate election officer of that constituency before its circulation for signatures.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.005)

What Needs to be Reported

A ballot measure committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee.

Political committees supporting ballot measures must disclose the name and address of contributors giving more than $25, and must disclose the following information:

  • The name and address of each person who has made one or more contributions during the period, together with the money value and date of each contribution and the aggregate value of all contributions received from each person during the campaign, or in the case of a continuing political committee, the current calendar year.
  • In addition, each person who has made one or more contributions in the aggregate amount of more than $100, must disclose their occupation, and the name and address of their employer.
  • Each loan, promissory note, or security instrument to be used by or for the benefit of the political committee made by any person, including the names and addresses of the lender and each person liable directly, indirectly or contingently and the date and amount of each such loan, promissory note, or security instrument.
  • All other contributions not otherwise listed or exempted.
  • A statement that the political committee has received a certification from any partnership, association, corporation, organization or other combination of persons making a contribution to the political committee that:
  • The contribution is not financed in any part by a foreign national.
  • Foreign nationals are not involved in making decisions regarding the contribution in any way.
  • The name and address of each candidate or political committee to which any transfer of funds was made, including the amounts and dates of the transfers.
  • The name and address of each person to whom an expenditure was made in the aggregate amount of more than $50 during the period covered by this report, the amount, date and purpose of each expenditure, and the total sum of all expenditures.
  • The name, address and electronic contact information of each person to whom an expenditure was made for soliciting or procuring signatures on an initiative or referendum petition, the amount of the compensation to each person, and the total expenditures made for this purpose.
  • The name and address of any person and the amount owed for any debt with a value of more than $750 that has not been paid for any invoices submitted, goods received, or services performed, within five business days during the period within thirty days before an election, or within ten business days during any other period.

An out-of-state political committee must report when it makes an expenditure supporting or opposing a Washington state ballot proposition. The committee must disclose:

  • The committee’s name and address.
  • The purposes of the out-of-state committee.
  • The names, addresses and titles of its officers or, if it has no officers, the names, addresses and the titles of its responsible leaders.
  • The ballot proposition supported or opposed in the state of Washington, if any, and whether the committee is in favor of or opposed to that proposition.
  • The name and address of each person residing in the state of Washington or corporation that has a place of business in the state of Washington who has made one or more contributions in the aggregate of more than $25 to the out-of-state committee during the current calendar year, together with the money value and date of the contributions.
  • The name, address, and employer of each person or corporation residing outside the state of Washington who has made one or more contributions in the aggregate of more than $2,550 to the out-of-state committee during the current calendar year, together with the money value and date of the contributions. Annually, the commission modifies the $2,550 limit based on percentage change in the implicit price deflator for personal consumption expenditures for the United States.
  • The name and address of each person in the state of Washington to whom an expenditure was made by the out-of-state committee with respect to a political committee in the aggregate amount of more than $50, the amount, date and purpose of the expenditure, and the total sum of the expenditures.

Special reports of large contributions must be reported within 48 hours after receiving the contribution. The special report must include:

  • The amount of the contribution or contributions.
  • The date or dates of receipt.
  • The name and address of the donor.
  • The name and address of the recipient.
  • Any other information the commission may by rule require.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) §§ 42.17A.250, 42.17A.240, 42.17A.265, WAC § 390-16-034)

WEST VIRGINIA

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Definition

Ballot issue means a constitutional amendment, special levy, bond issue, local option referendum, municipal charter or revision, an increase or decrease of corporate limits, or any other question that is placed before the voters for a binding decision.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-1a)

What Needs to be Reported

West Virginia does not statutorily regulate support for, or opposition to, constitutional amendments.

WISCONSIN

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Definition

Referendum committee means an entity that satisfies all of the following:

  • It satisfies either of the following:
  • It has the major purpose of making expenditures to support or defeat a referendum, as specified in the entity’s organizational or governing documents, the entity’s bylaws, resolutions of the entity’s governing body, or registration statements filed by the entity under this chapter.
  • It uses more than 50% of its total spending in a 12-month period on expenditures made to support or defeat a referendum. In this subdivision, total spending does not include a committee’s fundraising or administrative expenses.
  • It is organized by any person, other than an individual, or by any permanent or temporary combination of two or more persons unrelated by marriage.
  • It does not receive contributions or make disbursements or contributions for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence a candidate’s nomination or election.

(Wis. Stat. § 11.0101)

What Needs to be Reported

Each referendum committee shall make full reports of all contributions, disbursements, and obligations received, made or incurred by the committee. The referendum committee shall include in each report the following information, covering the period since the last date covered on the previous report:

  • An itemized statement giving the date, full name and street address of each person who has made a contribution to the referendum committee, together with the amount of the contribution.
  • The occupation, if any, of each individual contributor whose cumulative contributions to the referendum committee for the calendar year are in excess of $200.
  • An itemized statement of each contribution made anonymously to the referendum committee. If the contribution exceeds $10, the referendum committee must specify whether the committee donated the contribution to the common school fund or to a charitable organization and shall include the full name and mailing address of the donee.
  • A statement of totals during the reporting period of contributions received and contributions donated.
  • A statement of the cash balance on hand at the beginning and end of the reporting period.
  • An itemized statement of each loan of money made to the referendum committee in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $20, together with all of the following:
  • The full name and mailing address of the lender.
  • A statement of whether the lender is a commercial lending institution.
  • The date and amount of the loan.
  • The full name and mailing address of each guarantor, if any.
  • The original amount guaranteed by each guarantor.
  • The balance of the amount guaranteed by each guarantor at the end of the reporting period.
  • An itemized statement of every disbursement exceeding $20 in amount or value, together with the name and address of the person to whom the disbursement was made, and the date and specific purpose for which the disbursement was made.
  • An itemized statement of every obligation exceeding $20 in amount or value, together with the name of the person or business with whom the obligation was incurred, and the date and the specific purpose for which each such obligation was incurred.
  • A statement of totals during the reporting period of disbursements made, including transfers made to and received from other committees, other income, and loans.
  • A statement of the balance of obligations incurred as of the end of the reporting period.

Referendum Committees may be eligible for an exemption from filing campaign finance reports if the committee anticipates that it will not accept contributions, make disbursements, or incur loans and other obligations in an aggregate amount exceeding $2,000 in a calendar year. The exemption is effective only for the calendar year in which it is granted.

(Wis. Stat. §§ 11.0804, 11.0104)

WYOMING

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Definition

Committee means a candidate's campaign committee or a political action committee.

(002-0005-21 Wyo. Code R. § 1)

What Needs to be Reported

Committees that support or oppose ballot measures are political action committees (PAC).

Reports must provide the full and complete record of contributions including cash, goods or services and actual and promised expenditures, including all identifiable expenses. Each expenditure must be itemized by date expended, name, city and state of the person or business to which the expenditure is made, and the purpose and amount of expenditure.

The person or entity required to submit a statement of contributions and expenditures should include:

  • The date expended.
  • The name, city and state of the person or business to which the expenditure is made.
  • The purpose and amount of the expenditure. The name of the person from whom received or to whom paid and the purpose of each expenditure or obligation

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-106)

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

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Definition

Initiative, referendum, recall, or proposed charter amendment committee means a person, or group of persons, organized for the purpose of, or engaged in promoting or opposing initiative, referendum or recall measures or proposed charter amendments.

(D.C. Code Mun. Regs. tit. 3 § 3000.1)

What Needs to be Reported

Each committee supporting or opposing an initiative, referendum, recall or proposed charter amendment must file reports of receipts and expenditures during the consideration of the placement of the measure on an election ballot.

Each expenditure must be disclosed and itemized expenditures, in the aggregate, of $10 or more within a calendar year, must report:

  • The full name and mailing address (including the occupation, employer and the principal place of business, if any) of each person to whom expenditures have been made by a committee or on behalf of a committee within the calendar year.
  • Those expenditures, in an aggregate amount or value of $10 or more, should disclose the amount, date, and purpose of each expenditure.

A verified statement of contributions report must be filed by the proposer of an initiative, referendum, or recall measure.

A contribution report must include the amount and date of the contribution, the name and address of the contributor and the occupation and the principal place of business, if any, of the contributor.

(D.C. Code §§ 1-1163.13, 1-1163.09, 1-1163.07)

PUERTO RICO

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Puerto Rico does not statutorily regulate support for, or opposition to, ballot measures or referendums.

GUAM

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Guam does not statutorily regulate support for, or opposition to, ballot measures or referendums.

NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS

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Not available

AMERICAN SAMOA

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Not available

VIRGIN ISLANDS

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The Virgin Islands do not statutorily regulate support for, or opposition to, ballot measures or referendums.

ALABAMA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means any communication disseminated through any federally regulated broadcast media, any mailing, or other distribution, electronic communication, phone bank, or publication which:

  • Contains the name or image of a candidate.
  • Is made within 120 days of an election in which the candidate will appear on the ballot.
  • The only reasonable conclusion to be drawn from the presentation and content of the communication is that it is intended to influence the outcome of an election.
  • Entails an expenditure in excess of $1,000.

(Ala. Code § 17-5-2)

What Communications are Covered

Broadcast media, any mailing, or other distribution, electronic communication, phone bank, or publication that is made within 120 days of an election.

What Needs to be Reported

Any person, campaign committee, PAC, non-profit organization, or other entity paying for an electioneering communication must disclose the contributions received for funding the electioneering communication and to whom payments are made related to the electioneering communication to the secretary of states. These disclosures of contributions and expenditures is to be made in the same forms and at the time as required of political action committees.

PACs supporting a proposition must file a report containing contribution and expenditure disclosures. The report must disclose:

  • The identity of each person who has made contributions within the calendar year in an aggregate amount greater than $100. This includes names, addresses, amounts and date of contributions.
  • The name and city of residence of each person who has made contributions within the calendar year in an aggregate amount greater than $100.
  • The total amount of other contributions received during the calendar year that are not reported under the itemized section.
  • The amount of cash or other assets on hand at the beginning of the reporting period and at the end of the reporting period.
  • The identification of each person to whom expenditures have been made by or on behalf of such committee or elected official within the calendar year in an aggregate amount greater than $100, including the amount, date and purpose of each such expenditure and, if applicable, the designation of each constitutional amendment or other proposition with respect to which an expenditure was made.
  • The identification of each person to whom an expenditure for personal services, salaries and reimbursed expenses greater than $100 has been made, and which is not otherwise reported or exempted from the provisions of this chapter, including the amount, date and purpose of such expenditure.
  • The grand total of all expenditures made by such committee or elected official during the calendar year.
  • The amount and nature of campaign debts and obligations owed by or to the committee or elected official, together with a statement as to the circumstances and conditions under which any such debt or obligation was extinguished and the consideration.

(Code of Ala. § 17-5-8)

ALASKA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means a communication that:

  • Directly or indirectly identifies a candidate.
  • Addresses an issue of national, state, or local political importance and attributes a position on that issue to the candidate identified.
  • Occurs within the 30 days preceding a general or municipal election.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.400, 2 Alaska Admin. Code 50.405)

What Communications are Covered

Print or broadcast media, including radio, television, cable, and satellite, the Internet, or through a mass mailing that occurs within 30 days of an election.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.400)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who conducts or transmits any electioneering communication must make a full report of expenditures made and contributions received to the Alaska Public Offices Commission. The report must contain:

  • The name, address, principal occupation and employer of the individual filing the report.
  • An itemized list of all expenditures made, incurred or authorized by the person.
  • The name of the candidate or the title of the ballot proposition or question supported or opposed by each expenditure and whether the expenditure is made to support or oppose the candidate or ballot proposition or question.
  • The name and address of each officer and director, when applicable.
  • The aggregate amount of all contributions made to the person, if any, for the purpose of making the electioneering communication; for all contributions, the date of the contribution and amount contributed by each contributor. The report must disclose:
  • If from an individual, the report must disclose the name and address of the contributor and, for contributions in excess of $50 in the aggregate during a calendar year, the name, address, principal occupation, and employer of the contributor.
  • If not from an individual, the report must disclose the name and address of the contributor and the name and address of each officer and director of the contributor.
  • For each paid expenditure:
  • The date of payment.
  • The check number or the identifying transaction number if paid by other means.
  • The name and address of the payee.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The amount of the expenditure.
  • For each required expenditure made to an advertising agency or to an individual or business that provides campaign consultation or management services, the report must disclose in detail all services rendered, including the name of each business from which campaign goods or services were purchased or subcontracted or media advertising placed, and the amount of the expenditure.

Nongroup entity is a person, other than an individual, that takes action the major purpose of which is to influence the outcome of an election, and that cannot participate in business activities (e.g. 501(c)(4) organization) must report the following:

  • The name and address of each officer and director of the nongroup entity.
  • The aggregate amount of all contributions made to the nongroup entity for the purpose of making the electioneering communication.
  • The name, address, date, and amount contributed by each contributor, for all contributions in excess of $250 in the aggregate during a calendar year, the principal occupation and employer of the contributor, and for all contributions in excess of $2,000 in the aggregate during a calendar year, the true source of such contributions and all intermediaries, if any.
  • The date and amount of all expenditures made, incurred, or authorized by the nongroup entity, for the for the purpose of making the electioneering communication.
  • A nongroup entity shall report contributions made to a different nongroup entity for the for the purpose of making the electioneering communication and expenditures made on behalf of a different nongroup entity for the purpose of making the electioneering communication as soon as the total contributions and expenditures reach $500 in a year and for all subsequent contributions and expenditures.

(Alaska Stat. §§ 15.13.040, 15.13.110, 2 Alaska Admin. Code 50.321)

ARIZONA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Arizona does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

ARKANSAS

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Arkansas does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

CALIFORNIA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Campaign advertising or communication means a communication authorized by a candidate or a candidate’s controlled committee or by a committee making independent expenditures, or by a committee formed primarily to support or oppose a ballot measure for the purpose of advocating the election or defeat of a qualified candidate or ballot measure through any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, direct mailing, or any other type of general, public, political advertising.

(Cal. Elec. Code § 304) 

What Communications are Covered

Any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, direct mailing, or any other type of general, public, political advertising.

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who makes a payment or a promise of payment totaling $50,000 or more for a communication that clearly identifies a candidate for elective state office, but does not expressly advocate the election or defeat of the candidate, and that is disseminated, broadcast, or otherwise published within 45 days of an election, must file electronically with the secretary of state a report disclosing:

  • The name of the person making the payment or promise of a payment.
  • The address of the person making the payment or promise of a payment.
  • The occupation and employer of the person, or the committee’s identification number issued by the secretary of state.
  • The amount and date of the payment or promise.
  • The name of the candidate(s) and the office(s) sought or held by the candidate(s) featured in the communication.
  • If the person filing the report receives a payment of $5,000 or more, or a promise for such a payment, from any one source for the purpose of funding the communication, the report must also include:
    • The name and address of the funding source.
    • The source’s occupation and employer if required, or committee identification number issued by the secretary of state.
    • The amount and date of the payment or promise.

The report must be filed within 48 hours of making the payment or the promise to make the payment.

(Cal. Gov’t Code § 85310)

COLORADO

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means any communication broadcasted by television or radio, printed in a newspaper or on a billboard, directly mailed or delivered by hand to personal residences or otherwise distributed that:

  • Unambiguously refers to any candidate.
  • Is broadcasted, printed, mailed, delivered, or distributed within 30 days before a primary election or 60 days before a general election.
  • Is broadcasted to, printed in a newspaper distributed to, mailed to, delivered by hand to, or otherwise distributed to an audience that includes members of the electorate for such public office.

(Colo. Const. Art. XXVIII, Section 2)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is broadcast, printed, mailed or delivered or placed on a website, streaming media service or online forum for a fee that is broadcasted or published within 30 days of a primary election or 60 days of a general election.

(C.R.S. § 1-45-108)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who expends $1,000 dollars or more per calendar year on electioneering communications or regular biennial school electioneering communications must report to the secretary of state. The report must include

  • The amount expended on the communications.
  • The name and address of any person that contributes more than $250 per year to the person expending $1,000 or more on the communications.
  • If the person making a contribution of more than $250 is a natural person, the disclosure must also include the person’s occupation and employer.
  • The name of the candidate or candidates unambiguously referred to in the electioneering communication or regular biennial school electioneering communication.
  • The method and dates of the communication.

(C.R.S. § 1-45-108)

CONNECTICUT

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Connecticut addresses electioneering communications in the expenditure definition. Expenditure means:

Any communication that refers to one or more clearly identified candidates and is broadcast by radio, television, other than on a public access channel, or by satellite communication or via the Internet, or as a paid-for telephone communication, or appears in a newspaper, magazine or on a billboard, or is sent by mail made prior to the 90 period preceding the date of an election for the purpose of influencing any legislative, administrative action or executive action.

What Communications are Covered

Any communication by radio, television, satellite, internet, telephone or a communication that appears in a newspaper, magazine or on a billboard, or is sent by mail within 90 days before an election.

What Needs to be Reported

Any person paying for an electioneering communication must disclose the contributions received and the expenses made for the electioneering communication to the Elections Enforcement Commission. These disclosures of contributions and expenditures is to be made on the same forms and at the time as required of political committees. Each finance disclosure statement must include:

  • Name of contributor.
  • Address of contributor.
  • The amount received during the relevant reporting period.
  • Method of contribution.
  • Date of the contribution.
  • The aggregate amount of contributions.
  • Each individual who contributes in excess of $100 but not more than $1,000, in the aggregate, to the extent known, the principal occupation of such individual and the name of the individual’s employer, if any.
  • Each individual who contributes in excess of $1,000, in the aggregate, the principal occupation of such individual and the name of the individual’s employer, if any.
  • Each itemized contribution made by a lobbyist, the spouse of a lobbyist or any dependent child of a lobbyist who resides in the lobbyist’s household.
  • Each expenditure, regardless of the amount, must be separately itemized, including the full name and complete address of each payee, including secondary payees.
  • The amount and the purpose of the expenditure.
  • A statement of the balance on hand or deficit.
  • Each expense incurred but not paid, provided if the expense is incurred by use of a credit card, the accounting must include secondary payees and the amount owed to each such payee.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-608)

DELAWARE

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means a communication by any individual or other person (other than a candidate committee or a political party) that:

  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate.
  • Is publicly distributed within 30 days before a primary election or special election, or 60 days before a general election to an audience that includes members of the electorate for the office sought by such candidate. 

Person includes any individual, corporation, company, incorporated or unincorporated association, general or limited partnership, society, joint stock company and any other organization or institution of any nature.

(15 Del. C. § 8002)

What Communications are Covered

A communication made:

  • Within 30 days before a primary or special election or 60 days before a general election.
  • Through television, radio, newspaper or other periodical, sign, Internet, mail or telephone.

What Needs to be Reported

Third-party advertisement means an electioneering communication. Any person other than a candidate committee or political party who makes an expenditure for any third-party advertisement that causes the aggregate amount of expenditures to exceed $500 during an election period must file a third-party advertisement report with the Department of Elections. Each report must disclose: 

All expenditures over $100 must disclose:

  • The full name and mailing address of each person to whom any expenditure has been made
  • The amount, date and purpose of each such expenditure; and
  • The name of, and office sought by, each candidate on whose behalf such expenditure was made.

All contributions over $100 must disclose:

  • The full name and mailing address of each person who has made contributions.
  • The total of all contributions from such person during the election period.
  • The amount and date of all contributions from such person during the reporting period.
  • If a person who made a contribution is not an individual, the full name and mailing address of:
  • Any person who, directly or otherwise, owns a legal or equitable interest of 50% or greater in such entity.
  • One responsible party, if the aggregate amount of contributions made by such entity during the election period exceeds $1,200.
  • The aggregate amount of all contributions made to the person who made the expenditure.

(15 Del. C. §§ 8030, 8031)

FLORIDA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means a text message or communication that is publicly distributed by a television station, radio station, cable television system, satellite system, newspaper, magazine, direct mail or telephone which:

  • Refers to or depicts a clearly identified candidate for office without expressly advocating the election or defeat of a candidate but that is susceptible of no reasonable interpretation other than an appeal to vote for or against a specific candidate.
  • Is made within 30 days before a primary or special primary election or 60 days before any other election for the office sought by the candidate.
  • Is targeted to the relevant electorate in the geographic area the candidate would represent if elected.

Electioneering communications organization means any group, other than a political party, affiliated party committee, or political committee, whose election-related activities are limited to making expenditures for electioneering communications or accepting contributions for the purpose of making electioneering communications and whose activities would not otherwise require the group to register as a political party or political committee under this chapter.

An expenditure for an electioneering communication is made when the earliest of the following occurs:

  • A person enters into a contract for applicable goods or services,
  • A person makes payment, in whole or in part, for the production or public dissemination of applicable goods or services, or
  • The electioneering communication is publicly disseminated.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.011)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is:

  • Made within 30 days before a primary or special primary election or 60 days before any other election for the office sought by the candidate.
  • A text message or communication that is publicly distributed by a television station, radio station, cable television system, satellite system, newspaper, magazine, direct mail or telephone.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.011)

What Needs to be Reported

An electioneering communications organization must disclose:

  • The full name, address, and occupation, if any, of each person who has made one or more contributions to or for such electioneering communications organization within the reporting period, together with the amount and date of such contributions. For corporations, the report must provide as clear a description as practicable of the principal type of business conducted by the corporation. However, if the contribution is $100 or less, the occupation of the contributor or the principal type of business need not be listed.
  • The name and address of each political committee from which or to which the reporting electioneering communications organization made any transfer of funds, together with the amounts and dates of all transfers.
  • Each loan for electioneering communication purposes to or from any person or political committee within the reporting period, together with the full names, addresses, and occupations and principal places of business, if any, of the lender and endorsers, if any, and the date and amount of such loans.
  • A statement of each contribution, rebate, refund, or other receipt not otherwise listed.
  • The full name and address of each person to whom expenditures have been made by or on behalf of the electioneering communications organization within the reporting period and the amount, date, and purpose of each expenditure.
  • The full name and address of each person to whom an expenditure for personal services, salary, or reimbursement for expenses has been made and that is not otherwise reported, including the amount, date, and purpose of the expenditure.
  • The total sum of expenditures made by the electioneering communications organization during the reporting period.
  • The amount and nature of debts and obligations owed by or to the electioneering communications organization that relate to the conduct of any electioneering communication.
  • Transaction information for each credit card purchase. Receipts for each credit card purchase must be retained by the electioneering communications organization.
  • The primary purposes of an expenditure made indirectly through an electioneering communications organization for goods and services, such as communications media placement or procurement services and other expenditures that include multiple components as part of the expenditure. The primary purpose of an expenditure shall be that purpose, including integral and directly related components, that comprises 80% of such expenditure.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.0703)

Candidates, political committees and other persons report electioneering communications in their expenditure reports. See the “expenditures” tab.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.07)

GEORGIA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Georgia does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

HAWAII

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means any advertisement that is broadcast from a cable, satellite, television, or radio broadcast station; published in any periodical or newspaper or by electronic means; or sent by mail at a bulk rate, and that:

  • Refers to a clearly identifiable candidate.
  • Is made, or scheduled to be made, either within 30 days prior to a primary or initial special election or within 60 days prior to a general or special election.
  • Is not susceptible to any reasonable interpretation other than as an appeal to vote for or against a specific candidate.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-341)

What Communications are Covered

Any advertisement that is:

  • Made, or scheduled to be made, either within 30 days prior to a primary or initial special election or within 60 days prior to a general or special election.
  • Broadcast from a cable, satellite, television, or radio broadcast station; published in any periodical or newspaper or by electronic means; or sent by mail.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-341)

What Needs to be Reported

Each person who makes an expenditure for electioneering communications in an aggregate amount of more than $1,000 during any calendar year must file with the Campaign Spending Commission a statement of information within 24 hours. Each statement must contain the following:

  • The name of the person making the expenditure, name of any person or entity sharing or exercising discretion or control over the person, and the custodian of the books and accounts of the person making the expenditure.
  • The names and titles of the executives or board of directors who authorized the expenditure, if the expenditure was made by a noncandidate committee, business entity or an organization.
  • The state of incorporation or formation and principal address of the noncandidate committee, business entity, or organization or for an individual, the name, address, occupation, and employer of the individual making the expenditure.
  • The amount of each expenditure during the period covered by the statement and the identification of the person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The elections to which the electioneering communications pertain and the names of any clearly identifiable candidates and whether those candidates are supported or opposed.
  • If the expenditures were made by a noncandidate committee, the names and addresses of all persons who contributed to the noncandidate committee for the purpose of publishing or broadcasting (earmarked funds) the electioneering communications.
  • If the expenditures were made by an organization other than a noncandidate committee, the names and addresses of all persons who contributed to the organization for the purpose of publishing or broadcasting (earmarked funds) the electioneering communications.
  • Whether any electioneering communication is made in coordination, cooperation, or concert with or at the request or suggestion of any candidate, candidate committee, or noncandidate committee, or agent of any candidate if any, and if so, the identification of the candidate, candidate committee, or noncandidate committee, or agent involved.
  • The three top contributors, if applicable. “top contributor” means a contributor who has contributed an aggregate amount of $10,000 or more to a noncandidate committee within a twelve-month period prior to the purchase of an advertisement.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-341)

IDAHO

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means any communication broadcast by television or radio, printed in a newspaper or on a billboard, directly mailed or delivered by hand to personal residences, or telephone calls made to personal residences, or otherwise distributed that:

  • Unambiguously refers to any candidate.
  • Is broadcasted, printed, mailed, delivered, made or distributed within 30 days before a primary election or 60 days before a general election.
  • Is broadcasted to, printed in a newspaper, distributed to, mailed to or delivered by hand to, telephone calls made to, or otherwise distributed to an audience that includes members of the electorate for such public office.

(Idaho Code § 67-6602)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is:

  • Made or distributed within 30 days before a primary election or 60 days before a general election.
  • Broadcast by television or radio, printed in a newspaper or on a billboard, directly mailed or delivered by hand to personal residences, or telephone calls made to personal residence

(Idaho Code § 67-6602)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who conducts or transmits any electioneering communication shall be required to file a statement on a form provided by the secretary of state. Contents of the statement must include:

  • The amount spent on such communications.
  • The name and address of any persons who contribute $50.00 or more.
  • Date of public distribution.
  • Method of communication.
  • Name of candidates referred to and whether it is in support or opposition.

(Idaho Code § 67-6628)

ILLINOIS

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means:

  • Any broadcast, cable, or satellite communication, including radio, television, or Internet communication, that refers to:
  • A clearly identified candidate or candidates who will appear on the ballot for nomination for election, election or retention.
  • A clearly identified political party; or
  • A clearly identified question of public policy that will appear on the ballot.
  • Is made within 60 days before a general election or consolidated election or 30 days before a primary election.
  • Is targeted to the relevant electorate.
  • Is susceptible to no reasonable interpretation other than as an appeal to vote for or against a clearly identified candidate for nomination for election, election, or retention, a political party, or a question of public policy.

(10 ILCS 5/9-1.14)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is:

  • Made within 60 days before a general election or consolidated election or 30 days before a primary election.
  • A broadcast, cable, or satellite communication, including radio, television, or Internet communication.

(10 ILCS 5/9-1.14)

What Needs to be Reported

Any trust, partnership, committee, association, corporation, or other organization or group of persons that makes electioneering communications that are not made in connection, consultation, or concert with a public official or candidate must file reports required by an independent expenditure committee.

  • Contributions more than $150 must be itemized:
  • The full name and mailing address of contributor.
  • The amount and date of contributions.
  • If the contributor is an individual who contributed more than $500, the occupation and employer of the contributor or, if the occupation and employer of the contributor are unknown, a statement that the committee has made a good faith effort to ascertain this information.
  • The total sum of individual contributions made to or for the committee during the reporting period.
  • The total sum of all receipts by or for the committee or candidate during the reporting period.
  • Expenditures and itemized expenditures more than $150, in an aggregate amount or value, must include:
    • The full name and mailing address of each person to whom expenditures have been made by the committee or candidate within the reporting period.
    • The amount.
    • The date.
    • The purpose of each expenditure.
    • The question of public policy or the name and address of, and the office sought by, each candidate on whose behalf that expenditure was made.
  • The total sum of expenditures made by the committee during the reporting period.

(10 ILCS 5/9-1.8, 10 ILCS 5/9-9.5, 10 ILCS 5/9-11)

INDIANA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Indiana does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

IOWA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Iowa does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

KANSAS

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Kansas does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

KENTUCKY

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Kentucky does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

LOUISIANA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means any broadcast, cable, or satellite communication that refers to a legally qualified candidate for elected office and is broadcast within 60 days before any election in which such candidate is on the ballot.

(La. R.S. § 18:1463)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is any broadcast, cable, or satellite communication that is made within 60 days before any election.

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees and other persons must file expenditure reports and each report should contain the following information:

  • The full name and address of each person to whom an expenditure has been made by the candidate during the reporting period.
  • The amount of expenditure.
  • A description of the purpose as it relates to the expenditure.
  • The date of each expenditure shall be reported.
  • A brief description of an in-kind expenditure, as well as the valuation made by the candidate and the campaign treasurer and the date(s) of the expenditure.
  • When multiple expenditures have been made to the same person, during the reporting period, the aggregate amount of such expenditures and the aggregate valuation of in-kind expenditures must be reported for each such person.
  • The aggregate amount expended for each candidate must be reported.

(La. R.S. §§ 18:1495.5, 18:1491.7, 18:1501.1)

MAINE

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Maine addresses electioneering communications in the independent expenditure definition.

Any expenditure made by a person, party committee or political action committee that is not made in cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, a candidate’s authorized political committee that is made to design, produce or disseminate a communication that names or depicts a clearly identified candidate and is disseminated during the 28 days, including election day, before a primary election; 35 days, including election day, before a special election; or from Labor Day to a general election day.

What Communications are Covered

Any communication through broadcasting stations, cable television systems, newspapers, magazines, publicly accessible sites on the Internet, direct mails or other similar types of general public political advertising made 28 days, including election day, before a primary election; 35 days, including election day, before a special election; or from Labor Day to a general election day.

What Needs to be Reported

A person, party committee or political action committee that makes any independent expenditure in excess of $250 during any one candidate’s election must file a report with the Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices. A report must contain:

  • An itemized account of each expenditure in excess of $250 in any one candidate’s election.
  • The date and purpose of each expenditure.
  • The name of each payee or creditor.
  • Whether the expenditure is in support of or in opposition to the candidate.
  • Include a statement under oath or affirmation whether the expenditure is made in cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, the candidate or an authorized committee or agent of the candidate.

(21-A M.R.S. §§ 1014, 1019-B)

MARYLAND

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means a broadcast television or radio communication, a cable television communication, a satellite television or radio communication, a mass mailing, an e-mail blast, a text blast, a telephone bank, a qualifying paid digital communication, or an advertisement in a print publication that:

  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate or ballot issue.
  • Is made within 60 days of an election day on which the candidate or ballot issue is on the ballot.
  • Is capable of being received by:
  • 50,000 or more individuals in the constituency where the candidate or ballot issue is on the ballot, if the communication is transmitted by television or radio; or
  • 5,000 or more individuals in the constituency where the candidate or ballot issue is on the ballot, if the communication is a mass mailing, an e-mail blast, a text blast, a telephone bank, a qualifying paid digital communication, or an advertisement in a print publication.
  • Is not made in coordination with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, a campaign finance entity of a candidate, an agent of a candidate, or a ballot issue committee.

(Md. Code Ann., Elec. Law § 13-307)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is:

  • Any broadcast television or radio communication, cable television communication, satellite television or radio communication, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, mass mailing, e-mail blast, text blast, qualifying paid digital communication, or telephone bank to the general public, or any other form of general public political advertising; and
  • Made within 60 days of an election day on which the candidate or ballot issue is on the ballot.

(Md. Code Ann., Elec. Law § 13-307)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who conducts or transmits any electioneering communication must be required to file an electioneering communication report with the State Board ofE. The report must include the following information:

  • The identity of the person making disbursements for electioneering communications and of the person exercising direction or control over the activities of the person making the disbursements for electioneering communications.
  • An entity required to file an electioneering communication report under this section shall do at least one of the following, unless neither are applicable to the entity:
  • If the entity submits regular, periodic reports to its shareholders, members, or donors, include in each report in a clear and conspicuous manner, the information for each disbursement for electioneering communications made during the period covered by the report that must be included in an electioneering communication report; or
  • If the entity maintains an Internet site, post on that Internet site a hyperlink from its homepage to the Internet site where the entity’s electioneering communication report information is publicly available.
  • The business address of the person making the disbursements for electioneering communications.
  • The amount and date of each disbursement for electioneering communications during the period covered by the report and the person to whom the disbursement was made.
  • The candidate or ballot issue to which the electioneering communications relate.
  • The identity of each person who made cumulative donations of $6,000 or more to the person making the disbursements for electioneering communications during the period covered by the report.

(Md. Code Ann., Elec. Law § 13-307)

MASSACHUSETTS

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means any broadcast, cable, mail, satellite or print communication that:

  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate.
  • Is publicly distributed within 90 days before an election in which the candidate is seeking election or reelection; provided, however, that “electioneering communication” shall not include the following communications:
  • A communication that is disseminated through a means other than a broadcast station, radio station, cable television system or satellite system, newspaper, magazine, periodical, billboard advertisement or mail.
  • A communication to less than 100 recipients.
  • A news story, commentary, letter to the editor, news release, column, op-ed or editorial broadcast by a television station, radio station, cable television system or satellite system, or printed in a newspaper, magazine or other periodical in general circulation.
  • Expenditures or independent expenditures or contributions that must otherwise be reported.
  • A communication from a membership organization exclusively to its members and their families, otherwise known as a membership communication.
  • Bonafide candidate debates or forums and advertising or promotion of the same.
  • Email communications.
  • Internet communications which are not paid advertisements.

(Mass Gen. Laws ch. 55, § 1)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is:

  • Any broadcast, cable, mail, satellite or print communication, include paid radio, television or internet advertising.
  • Made within 90 days before an election in which the candidate is seeking election or reelection.

(Mass Gen. Laws ch. 55, § 1, Mass Gen. Laws ch. 55, § 18G)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who conducts or transmits any electioneering communication aggregating $1,000 or more must be required to file a report with the Office of Campaign and Political Finance. The report must include the following information, within seven days after making the expenditure:

  • The name and address of the individual, group, association, corporation, labor union or other entity making the electioneering communication.
  • The name of any candidate clearly identified in the communication.
  • The total amount or value of the communication.
  • The name and address of the vendor to whom the payments were made and the purpose and date of the expenditure.
  • Any individual, group, association, corporation, labor union or other entity not defined as a political committee who makes electioneering communication expenditures in an aggregate amount exceeding $250 during a calendar year who receives funds to make electioneering communications shall include in the electronic filing the date the funds were received, the name and address of the provider of funds in excess of $250, if any, and the value of the funds received.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, § 18F)

MICHIGAN

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Michigan does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

MINNESOTA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Minnesota does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

MISSISSIPPI

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Mississippi does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

Missouri

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Missouri does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

MONTANA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means a paid communication that:

  • Is publicly distributed by one or more of the modes of communication listed in the statute.
  • Is made within sixty days of the initiation of voting in an election.
  • Does or does not support or oppose a candidate or ballot issue.
  • Can be received by more than one recipients in the district voting on the candidate or ballot issue.
  • Meets one or more of the following criteria:
  • Refers to one or more clearly identified candidates in the election;
  • Depicts the name, image, likeness or voice of one or more clearly identified candidates in the election; or
  • Refers to a political party, ballot issue or other question submitted to the voters in the election.

Made within 60 days of the initiation of voting in an election means:

  • In the case of mail ballot elections, the initiation of voting occurs when official ballot packets are mailed to qualified electors.
  • In other elections the initiation of voting occurs when absentee ballot packets are mailed to or otherwise delivered to qualified electors.

An electioneering communication may also be an independent expenditure.

(ARM 44.11.605, ARM 44.11.604, Mont. Code Ann. § 13-1-101)

What Communications are Covered

A paid communication that is:

  • A paid advertisement broadcast over radio, television, cable, or satellite; paid placement of content on the internet or other electronic communication network; a paid advertisement published in a newspaper or periodical or on a billboard; a mailing; or printed materials.
  • To support or oppose a candidate or ballot issue.
  • Made within 60 days of the initiation of voting in an election.

What Needs to be Reported

Candidates, ballot issue committees, political party committees, independent committees or political committees report electioneering communications in their expenditure reports. The report includes:

  • The full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of each person to whom expenditures have been made by the committee or candidate during the reporting period, including the amount, date and purpose of that expenditure and the total amount of expenditures made to each person.
  • The full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of each person to whom an expenditure for personal services, salaries and reimbursed expenses has been made, including the amount, date and purpose of that expenditure and the total amount of expenditures made to each person.
  • The total sum of expenditures made by a political committee or candidate during the reporting period.
  • The name and address of each political committee or candidate to which the reporting committee or candidate made any transfer of funds, together with the amount and dates of all transfers.
  • Any other information that may be required by the commissioner to fully disclose the disposition of funds used to support or oppose candidates or issues.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-37-229, ARM 44.11.502)

NEBRASKA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Nebraska does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

NEVADA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Nevada does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

New Hampshire does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

NEW JERSEY

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means any communication made within the period beginning on January 1 of an election year and the date of the election and refers to:

  • A clearly identified candidate for office and promotes or supports a candidate for that office or opposes a candidate for that office, regardless of whether the communication expressly advocates a vote for or against a candidate.
  • A public question and promotes or supports the passage or defeat of that question, regardless of whether the communication expressly advocates a vote for or against the passage of the question. The term includes communications published in any newspaper or periodical; broadcast on radio, television, or the Internet or digital media, or any public address system; placed on any billboard, outdoor facility, button, motor vehicle, window display, poster, card, pamphlet, leaflet, flyer, or other circular; or contained in any direct mailing, robotic phone calls, or mass e-mails.

(N.J. Stat. § 19:44A-3)

What Communications are  Covered

A press release, pamphlet, flyer, form letter, sign, billboard, paid advertisement printed in any newspaper or other publication or broadcast on radio or television, or telephone call featuring a recorded message, or delivered or accessed by electronic means, including, but not limited to, the Internet or text messaging, or any other form of advertising directed to the electorate.

Any written or electronic statement, pamphlet, advertisement or other printed or broadcast matter or statement, communication, or advertisement delivered or accessed by electronic means, including, but not limited to, the Internet, containing an explicit appeal for the election or defeat of a candidate.

(N.J. Stat. § 19:44A-3)

What Needs to be Reported

Candidate and committees report electioneering communications in their expenditure reports. The report must include:

  • The date the expenditure was made.
  • The full name and address of the payee.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The amount of the expenditure.
  • The number of the check.

A candidate, candidate committee or political committee must file a notice of an expenditure of money or other thing of value in excess of $1,900, or aggregate expenditures that total in excess of $ 1,900, made, incurred, or authorized by the candidate committee or political committee to support or defeat a candidate in an election, or to aid the passage or defeat of any public question, during the period of time between the thirteenth day prior to the election and the date of the election must be reported within 48 hours. The notice must include:

  • The name of the person, firm, or organization to whom or which the expenditure was paid.
  • The amount and purpose of the expenditure.
  • The name and mailing address of the person, firm or recipient; or organization to whom or which the expenditure was paid or given.
  • The amount and purpose of the expenditure.

(N.J.A.C. 19:25-12.2, N.J.A.C. 19:25-8.6A, N.J.A.C. 19:25-8.9, N.J.A.C. 19:25-10.10)

NEW MEXICO

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

New Mexico does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

NEW YORK

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

New York addresses electioneering communications in its independent expenditure definition.

Independent expenditure means:

  • An expenditure made by an independent expenditure committee conveyed to 500 or more members of a general public audience or any paid internet or digital advertisement targeted to 50 or more members of the general public audience. An independent expenditure shall be in the form of:
  • An audio or video communication via broadcast, cable or satellite.
  • A written communication via advertisements, pamphlets, circulars, flyers, brochures, letterheads.
  • Other published statements that include, but not be limited to, digital media, any paid internet or digital advertisement.
  • It contains words such as vote, oppose, support, elect, defeat, or reject, which call for the election or defeat of the clearly identified candidate.
  • It refers to and advocates for or against a clearly identified candidate or ballot proposal on or after January 1st of the year of the election in which such candidate is seeking office or such proposal shall appear on the ballot; or within 60 days before a general or special election for the office sought by the candidate or 30 days before a primary election, includes or references a clearly identified candidate.

(N.Y. Comp. Codes R. & Regs. tit. 9, § 6200.10)

What Communications are Covered

An audio, video or written communication via broadcast, cable, satellite, advertisements, pamphlets, circulars, flyers, brochures, letterheads; and other published statements, such as digital media, any paid internet or digital advertisement that is made 30 days before a primary and 60 days before a general election.

(N.Y. Comp. Codes R. & Regs. tit. 9, § 6200.10)

What Needs to be Reported

A person making independent expenditures for a communication must file a report with the secretary of state. The report must include:

  • The name, address, occupation and employer of the person making the statement.
  • For each expenditure or payment made:
  • The dollar amount paid for each independent expenditure, the name and address of the person or entity receiving the payment, the date the payment was made and a description of the independent expenditure.
  • The election to which the independent expenditure pertains and the name of the clearly identified candidate or the ballot proposal referenced and whether the candidate or ballot proposal is supported or opposed.
  • A list of all expenditures made by, and liabilities incurred for services rendered during the relevant reporting period.
  • For each contribution received the name, address, occupation and employer of any person providing a contribution, gift, loan, advance or deposit of $1,000 or more for the independent expenditure, or the provision of services for the same and the date it was given.

(N.Y. Elec. Law § 14-107)

NORTH CAROLINA

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means any broadcast, cable, or satellite communication, or mass mailing, or telephone bank that has all the following characteristics:

  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate for elected office.
  • In the case of the general election in November of the even-numbered year is aired or transmitted within 30 days of the election for that office.
  • May be received by either:
    • 50,000 or more individuals in the state in an election for statewide office or 7,500 or more individuals in any other election if in the form of broadcast, cable, or satellite communication.
    • 20,000 or more households, cumulative per election, in a statewide election or 2,500 households, cumulative per election, in any other election if in the form of mass mailing or telephone bank.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.6)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is:

  • A broadcast, cable, or satellite communication, or mass mailing, or telephone bank that:  Refers to a clearly identified candidate.
  • Is aired or transmitted within 30 days of the general election.
  • May be received by either: 50,000 or more individuals in the state in a statewide election or 7,500 or more individuals in any other election if in the form of broadcast, cable, or satellite communication; or 20,000 or more households, in a statewide election or 2,500 households, in any other election if in the form of mass mailing or telephone bank.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.6)

What Needs to be Reported

Electioneering Communication reports filed with the county board of elections or the State Board of Elections must include all of the following:

  • The name and mailing address of the individual, person, or entity incurring the expense.
  • A phone number for the individual, person, or entity incurring the expense.
  • The name and mailing address of the custodian of the books and accounts of the individual, person, or entity incurring the expense.
  • If the expense is incurred by an individual, the individual's principal occupation.
  • If the expense is incurred by a person or entity, the principal place of business of the person or entity.
  • If an individual, person, or entity is sharing or exercising direction or control over the activities of the individual, person, or entity incurring the expense with regards to the electioneering communication:
    • The name and mailing address of the individual, person or entity sharing or exercising direction or control.
    • If an individual, the individual's principal occupation.
    • If a person or entity, the principal place of business of the person or entity.
  • The amount paid to each individual, person or entity to produce the electioneering communication.
  • The date of the electioneering communication.
  • A description of the electioneering communication, including any title.
  • The name of the candidate or candidates referred to in the electioneering communication.
  • For each donation of more than $1,000 during the reporting period made to further the electioneering communication:
    • The donor's name and mailing address.
    • If the donor is an individual, the individual's principal occupation.
    • If the donor is a person or entity, the principal place of business of the person or entity.
    • The amount of the donation.
    • The date of the donation.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.12C, 8 N.C. Admin. Code 21.0104)

NORTH DAKOTA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

North Dakota does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

OHIO

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Coordinated electioneering communication means any electioneering communication that is made pursuant to any arrangement, coordination, or direction by a candidate or a candidate’s campaign committee, by an officer, agent, employee, or consultant of a candidate or a candidate’s campaign committee, or by a former officer, former agent, former employee, or former consultant of a candidate or a candidate’s campaign committee prior to the airing, broadcasting, or cablecasting of the communication.

An electioneering communication is presumed to be a “coordinated electioneering communication” when it is either of the following:

  • Based on information about a candidate’s plans, projects, or needs provided to the person making the disbursement by the candidate or the candidate’s campaign committee, by an officer, agent, employee, or consultant of the candidate or the candidate’s campaign committee, or by a former officer, former agent, former employee, or former consultant of the candidate or the candidate’s campaign committee, with a view toward having the communication made; or
  • Made by or through any person who is, or has been, authorized to raise or expend funds on behalf of a candidate or the candidate’s campaign committee, who is, or has been, an officer, agent, employee, or consultant of the candidate or of the candidate’s campaign committee, or who is, or has been, receiving any form of compensation or reimbursement from the candidate or the candidate’s campaign committee or from an officer, agent, employee, or consultant of the candidate or of the candidate’s campaign committee.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.1011)

What Communications are Covered

A communication that is:

  • A broadcast, cable or satellite communication.
  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate.
  • Made during either of the following periods of time:
    • Between the date that the persn becomes a candidate (if it’s before the primary election) and the 30th day prior to that primary election, and between the date of the primary election and the 30th day prior to the general election; or
    • The date of the primary election (if person becomes a candidate after the day of the primary election) and the 30th day prior to general election.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.1011)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who conducts or transmits any electioneering communication is required to file a report to the secretary of state. Any person who intends “to make a disbursement or disbursements for the direct costs of producing or airing electioneering communications” must file a notice with the secretary of state. This must be filed before an electioneering communication is made.

A second filing—a disclosure of electioneering communications statement—is filed after a disbursement is made (within 24 hours of each disclosure date) if the disbursements are in excess of $10,000 during any calendar year. A report must include the following information:

  • The full name and address of the person making the disbursement, of any person sharing or exercising direction or control over the activities of the person making the disbursement, and of the custodian of the books and accounts of the person making the disbursement.
  • The principal place of business of the person making the disbursement, if not an individual.
  • The amount of each disbursement of more than one dollar during the period covered by the statement and the identity of the person to whom the disbursement was made.
  • The nominations or elections to which the electioneering communications pertain and the names, if known, of the candidates identified or to be identified.
  • If the disbursements were paid out of a segregated bank account that consists of funds contributed solely by individuals who are United States citizens or nationals or lawfully admitted for permanent residence directly to the account for electioneering communications, donor disclosure is required for all contributors who contributed an aggregate amount of $200 dollars or more.
  • If the disbursements were paid out of funds, donor disclosure is required for all contributors who contributed an aggregate amount of $200 or more to the person making the disbursement and whose contributions were used for making the disbursement or disbursements required to be reported.
  • The month, day, and year that the contributor made the contribution or contributions aggregating $200 or more, should disclose:
  • The full name and address of the contributor, and, if the contributor is a political action committee, the registration number assigned to the political action committee.
  • If the contributor is an individual, the name of the individual’s current employer, if any, or, if the individual is self-employed, the individual’s occupation and the name of the individual’s business, if any.
  • If the contribution is transmitted from amounts deducted from the wages and salaries of two or more employees that exceed in the aggregate $100, the full name of the employees’ employer and the full name of the labor organization of which the employees are members, if any.
  • A description of the contribution, if other than money.
  • The value in dollars and cents of the contribution.
  • Any individual who makes a contribution or contributions aggregating $200 or more for the purpose of funding the direct costs of producing or airing an electioneering communication must provide the name of the individual’s current employer, if any, or, if the individual is self-employed, the individual’s occupation and the name of the individual’s business, if any, to the recipient of the contribution at the time the contribution is made.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.1011)

OKLAHOMA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Electioneering communication means any communication or series of communications that is sent by handbill or direct mail; broadcast by radio, television, cable or satellite; or appear in a newspaper, magazine or on a billboard which:

  • Refers to one candidate or one or more of the same clearly identified candidates for state office or one ballot measure or one or more of the same ballot measures.
  • Are made within:
  • 60 days before a general or special election for the office sought by the candidate or candidates or the ballot measure or ballot measures; or
  • 30 days before a primary or runoff primary election for the office sought by the candidate or candidates.
  • Are targeted to the relevant electorate.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 1-1-2)

What Communications are Covered

A communication that is:

  • A handbill or direct mail; broadcast by radio, television, cable or satellite; or appear in a newspaper, magazine or on a billboard.
  • Made within 60 days before a general or special election or 30 days before a primary or runoff primary election.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 1-1-2)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who conducts or transmits any electioneering communication must file a report with the secretary of state. The following information must be reported:

  • The total of electioneering communications made during the reporting period and the total of electioneering communications made during the election cycle.
  • The amount, the date and a brief description or statement of each electioneering communication and the name and office of the candidate to whom the communication referred.
  • If the person making the electioneering communication, other than a PAC, received funds from any other person for the purpose of making an electioneering communication, the report must include the name, address and principal business activity of each person contributing funds in excess of $50 in the aggregate and the amount of any such contribution or contributions that have not been previously reported, together with a cumulative total of all contributions made by each person since the first report was filed for the election for which the electioneering communication is being made.
  • The total of all monetary expenditures and monetary transfers.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 10-1-14, 74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 10-1-16)

OREGON

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Oregon addresses electioneering communications in its independent expenditure definition.

An expenditure by a person for a communication in support of or in opposition to a clearly identified candidate or measure that is not made with the cooperation or with the prior consent of, or in consultation with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate or any agent or authorized committee of the candidate, or any political committee or agent of a political committee supporting or opposing a measure.

Communication in support of or in opposition to a clearly identified candidate or measure means:

  • The communication, when taken as a whole and with limited reference to external events, such as the proximity to the election, could only be interpreted by a reasonable person as containing advocacy for the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate for nomination or election to public office, or the passage or defeat of a clearly identified measure; and the electoral portion of the communication is unmistakable, unambiguous and suggestive of only one meaning; or
  • The communication involves aggregate expenditures of more than $250 by a person; the communication refers to a clearly identified candidate or measure that will appear on the ballot or to a political party; and the communication is published and disseminated to the relevant electorate within 60 calendar days before a primary election, 120 calendar days before a general election or 90 calendar days before an election other than a primary election or a general election.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.005)

What Communications are Covered

A communication that:

  • Is a printed or digital statement, audio statements, digital communications.
  • Clearly identifies the candidate or measure.
  • Is published and disseminated to the relevant electorate within 60 calendar days before a primary election, 120 calendar days before a general election or 90 calendar days before an election other than a primary election or a general election.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.005)

What Needs to be Reported

A person making independent expenditures of more than $250 in a calendar year for a communication must file a report with the secretary of state. The report must include:

  • The payee and payee type.
  • The payment method.
  • The payable subtypes.
  • The amount and purpose of each expenditure made in an aggregate amount of more than $100 to a payee, the name or, if applicable, the business name of the payee of the expenditure, and the city, or county if the payee is not located in a city, and state in which the payee is located.
  • The total amount of other expenditures as a single item.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.083)

PENNSYLVANIA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Pennsylvania does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

RHODE ISLAND

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means

  • Any print, broadcast, cable, satellite, or electronic media communication not coordinated with any candidate, authorized candidate campaign committee, or political party committee.
  • Identifies a candidate or referendum and is made either within 60 days before a general or special election or town meeting for the office sought by the candidate or referendum; or 30 days before a primary election, for the office sought by the candidate.
  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate or referendum is “targeted to the relevant electorate” if the communication can be received by 2,000 or more persons in the district the candidate seeks to represent or the constituency voting on the referendum.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25-3)

What Communication if Covered

Any communication that is:

  • Any print, broadcast, cable, satellite, or electronic media communication.
  • Made either within 60 days before a general or special election or town meeting or 30 days before a primary election.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25-3)

What Needs to be Reported

Reports of electioneering communications must contain:

  • The name of the person responsible for the expenditure.
  • The street address, city, state, zip code of the person responsible for the expenditure.
  • The occupation and employer (if self-employed, the name and place of business) of the person responsible for the expenditure.
  • The name, street address, city, state, and zip code of the person receiving the expenditure the date and amount of each expenditure.
  • The year to date total.
  • Identity of all donors of an aggregate of $1,000 or more within the current election cycle.
  • A statement identifying the candidate or referendum that the electioneering communication is intended to promote the success or defeat and affirm under penalty of false statement that the expenditure is not coordinated with a  campaign.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25.3-1)

SOUTH CAROLINA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

South Carolina does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

SOUTH DAKOTA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

South Dakota addresses electioneering communications in its independent expenditure definition.

Independent communication expenditure means an expenditure, including the payment of money or exchange of other valuable consideration or promise, made by a person, entity, or political committee for a communication concerning a candidate or a ballot question which is not made to, controlled by, coordinated with, requested by, or made upon consultation with that candidate, political committee, or agent of a candidate or political committee.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-1)

What Communications are Covered

Any independent communications concerning candidates, public office holders, ballot questions, or political parties who are not controlled by, coordinated with, requested by, or made upon consultation with that candidate.

The communication that is NOT covered:

  • Any news article, editorial endorsement, opinion or commentary writing, or letter to the editor printed in a newspaper, magazine, flyer, pamphlet, or other periodical not owned or controlled by a candidate or political committee.
  • Any editorial endorsement or opinion aired by a broadcast facility not owned or controlled by a candidate or political committee.
  • Any communication by a person made in the regular course and scope of the person’s business or ministry or any communication made by a membership entity solely to members of the entity and the members” families.
  • Any communication that refers to any candidate only as part of the popular name of a bill or statute.
  • Any communication used for the purpose of polling if the poll question does not expressly advocate for or against a candidate, public office holder, ballot question, or political party.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-16)

What Needs to be Reported

A person making independent expenditures for a communication must file a report with the secretary of state. The independent communication expenditure statements must include:

  • Identify the person or entity making the expenditure
  • Including mailing address, city, and state of a person.
  • If an entity, the mailing address, city and state, and website address if applicable.
  • Identify any expenditures made for communications during the current calendar year but not yet reported on a prior statement, the name of each candidate, public office holder, ballot question, or political party mentioned or identified in each communication, the amount spent on each communication, and a description of the content of each communication.
  • For an entity, the independent communication expenditure statement shall also include the name and title of the person filing the report, the name of its chief executive, if any, and the name of the person who authorized the expenditures on behalf of the entity.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-16)

TENNESSEE

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Tennessee does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

TEXAS

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Texas does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

UTAH

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means a communication that:

  • Has at least a value of $10,000.
  • Clearly identifies a candidate or judge.
  • Is disseminated through the Internet, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, direct mailing, broadcast, cable, or satellite provider within 45 days of the clearly identified candidate’s or judge’s election date.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11–101)

What Communications are Covered

A communication that is:

  • Through the internet, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, direct mailing, broadcast, cable, or satellite provider.
  • Made within 45 days of the clearly identified candidate’s or judge’s election date.

What Needs to be Reported

A person who is not a reporting entity and pays for an electioneering communication must file a report with the lieutenant governor within 24 hours of making the payment or entering into a contract to make the payment.

  • Reporting entity means a candidate, a candidate's personal campaign committee, a judge, a judge's personal campaign committee, an officeholder, a party committee, a political action committee, a political issues committee, a corporation, or a labor organization.

An electioneering report must include:

  • The name and address of the person.
  • The name and address of each person contributing at least $100 to the person for the purpose of disseminating the electioneering communication.
  • The amount spent on the electioneering communication.
  • The name of the identified referenced candidate.
  • The medium used to disseminate the electioneering communication.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-901)

VERMONT

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means any communication that refers to a clearly identified candidate for office and that promotes or supports a candidate for that office or attacks or opposes a candidate for that office, regardless of whether the communication expressly advocates a vote for or against a candidate, including communications published in any newspaper or periodical or broadcast on radio or television or over the Internet or any public address system; placed on any billboards, outdoor facilities, buttons, or printed material attached to motor vehicles, window displays, posters, cards, pamphlets, leaflets, flyers, or other circulars; or contained in any direct mailing, robotic phone calls, or mass electronic or digital communications.

(Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 17, § 2901)

What Communications are Covered

A communication that is:

  • A newspaper or periodical or broadcast on radio or television or over the Internet or any public address system; placed on any billboards, outdoor facilities, buttons, or printed material attached to motor vehicles, window displays, posters, cards, pamphlets, leaflets, flyers, or other circulars; or contained in any direct mailing, robotic phone calls, or mass electronic or digital communications.
  • Made within 45 days before a primary, general, county or local election.

(Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 17, § 2901)

What Needs to be Reported

A person who makes expenditures for any one mass media activity totaling $500 or more, adjusted for inflation pursuant to the Consumer Price Index, within 45 days before a primary, general, county, or local election must, for each activity, file a mass media report with the secretary of state and send a copy of the report to each candidate whose name or likeness is included in the activity without that candidate’s knowledge. The report must:

  • Identify the person who made the expenditure.
  • The name of each candidate whose name or likeness was included in the activity.
  • The amount and date of the expenditure.
  • To whom it was paid.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The report shall include the names of the contributors, dates, and amounts for all contributions in excess of $100 accepted since the filing of the committee’s last report.
  • If the activity occurs within 45 days before the election and the expenditure was previously reported, an additional report shall be required.

(Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 17, § 2971)

VIRGINIA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Virginia does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

WASHINGTON

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means any broadcast, cable, or satellite television, radio transmission, digital communication, United States postal service mailing, billboard, newspaper, or periodical that:

  • Clearly identifies a candidate for a state, local, or judicial office either by specifically naming the candidate, or identifying the candidate without using the candidate’s name.
  • Is broadcast, transmitted electronically or by other means, mailed, erected, distributed, or otherwise published within 60 days before any election for that office in the jurisdiction in which the candidate is seeking election.
  • Either alone, or in combination with one or more communications identifying the candidate by the same sponsor during the 60 days before an election, has a fair market value or cost of $1,000 or more.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.005)

What Communications are Covered

A communication that is:

  • Any broadcast, cable, or satellite television, radio transmission, digital communication, United States postal service mailing, billboard, newspaper, or periodical.
  • Made within 60 days before any election for that office in the jurisdiction in which the candidate is seeking election.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.005)

What Needs to be Reported

Any electioneering communication shall be reported to the State Public Disclosure Commission by the sponsor on forms the commission shall develop by rule to include, at a minimum, the following information:

  • Name and address of the sponsor.
  • Source of funds for the communication, including:
  • The name and address of businesses, unions, groups, associations or other organizations using general treasury funds for the communication, however, if a business, union, group, association, or other organization undertakes a special solicitation of its members or other persons for an electioneering communication, or it otherwise receives funds for an electioneering communication, that entity must report.
  • The name, address, and, for individuals, occupation and employer, of a person whose funds were used to pay for the electioneering communication, along with the amount, if such funds from the person have exceeded $250 in the aggregate for the electioneering communication.
  • A statement from the sponsor that:
    • The electioneering communication is not financed in any part by a foreign national.
    • Foreign nationals are not involved in making decisions regarding the electioneering communication in any way.
  • Name and address of the person to whom an electioneering communication related expenditure was made.
  • A detailed description of each expenditure of more than $100.
  • The date the expenditure was made and the date the electioneering communication was first broadcast, transmitted, mailed, erected, distributed, or otherwise published.
  • The amount of the expenditure.
  • The name of each candidate clearly identified in the electioneering communication, the office being sought by each candidate, and the amount of the expenditure attributable to each candidate.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.305)

WEST VIRGINIA

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means any paid communication made by broadcast, cable or satellite signal, mass mailing, telephone bank, billboard advertisement, or publication in any newspaper, magazine, or other periodical that:

  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate for governor, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, auditor, commissioner of agriculture, supreme court of appeals, or the legislature.
  • Is publicly disseminated within:
  • 30 before a primary election in which the nomination for office sought by the candidate is to be determined.
  • 60 days before a general or special election in which the office sought by the candidate is to be filled
  • Is targeted to the relevant electorate.

(W. Va. Code Ann. § 3–8–1A)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication that is:

  • Any paid communication made by broadcast, cable or satellite signal, mass mailing, telephone bank, billboard advertisement, or publication in any newspaper, magazine, or other periodical.
  • Made within 30 before a primary election or 60 days before a general or special election in which the office sought by the candidate.

(W. Va. Code Ann. § 3–8–1A)

What Needs to be Reported

  • A person or political committees spending more than $5,000 for electioneering communications in a calendar year must file a report with the secretary of state. The report must include:  The name of the person making the expenditure, the name of any person sharing or exercising direction or control over the activities of the person making the expenditure and the name of the custodian of the books and accounts of the person making the expenditure.
  • If the person making the expenditure is not an individual, the principal place of business of the partnership, committee, association, organization or group which made the expenditure.
  • The amount of each expenditure of more than $1,000 made for electioneering communications during the period covered by the statement and the name of the person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The elections to which the electioneering communications pertain, the names, if known, of the candidates referred to or to be referred to therein, whether the electioneering communication is intended to support or oppose the identified candidates and the amount of the total expenditure reported spent to support or oppose each of the identified candidates.
  • The names and addresses of any contributors who contributed a total of more than $1,000 between the first day of the preceding calendar year and the disclosure date and whose contributions were used to pay for electioneering communications. 
  • With regard to the contributors, the statement must also include:
    • The month, day and year that the contributions of any single contributor exceeded $250.
    • If the contributor is a political action committee, the name and address the political action committee registered with the State Election Commission.
    • If the contributor is an individual, the name and address of the individual, his or her occupation, the name and address of the individual's current employer, if any, or, if the individual is self-employed, the name and address of the individual's business, if any.
    • A description of the contribution, if other than money.
    • The value in dollars and cents of the contribution.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-2b)

WISCONSIN

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Wisconsin does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

WYOMING

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering communication means any communication, including an advertisement, which is publicly distributed as a billboard, brochure, email, mailing, magazine, pamphlet or periodical, as the component of an internet website or newspaper or by the facilities of a cable television system, electronic communication network, internet streaming service, radio station, telephone or cellular system, television station or satellite system and which:

  • Refers to or depicts a clearly identified candidate for nomination or election to public office or a clearly identified ballot proposition and which does not expressly advocate the nomination, election or defeat of the candidate or the adoption or defeat of the ballot proposition.
  • Can only be reasonably interpreted as an appeal to vote for or against the candidate or ballot proposition.
  • Is made within 30 calendar days of a primary election, 60 calendar days of a general election or 21 calendar days of any special election during which the candidate or ballot proposition will appear on the ballot
  • Is targeted to the electors in the geographic area:
    • The candidate would represent if elected; or
    • Affected by the ballt proposition.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-101)

What Communications are Covered

Any communication, including an advertisement, billboard, brochure, email, mailing, magazine, pamphlet or periodical that is made within 30 days before a primary election, 60 days before a general election or 21 days before a special election.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-101)

What Needs to be Reported

An organization that expends in excess of $1,000 in any primary, general or special election to cause an electioneering communication to be made must file an itemized statement of contributions and expenditures. The statement must:

  • Identify the organization causing the electioneering communication to be made and the individual acting on behalf of the organization causing the communication to be made, if applicable.
  • Be filed at least seven days but not more than 14 days before any primary, general or special election. Any contribution received or expenditure made after the statement has been filed, through the day of the election, whether a primary, general or special election, must be filed as an amendment to the statement within 10 days after the election.
  • List those expenditures and contributions which relate to an electioneering communication.
  • The full and complete record of contributions which relate to an electioneering communication, including cash, goods or services and actual and promised expenditures. The date of each contribution of $100 or more, any expenditure or obligation, the name of the person from whom received or to whom paid and the purpose of each expenditure or obligation shall be listed.
  • All contributions under $100 must be reported but need not be itemized. All contributions, in the aggregate, over $100 must be itemized.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-106)

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

The District of Columbia does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

PUERTO RICO

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Definition of Electioneering Communication

Electioneering or election-related communication means any communication that:

  • Refers to a political party or ideology, aspirant, or candidate.
  • Expressly advocates for the election or defeat of such political party or ideology, aspirant, or candidate, which occurs when it contains words such as: vote for, vote against, support, reject, or refuse, work for the election of, work for the defeat of, choose, defeat, help us to elect, help us to defeat or remove, among others.
  • Any electioneering communication that is made within 90 days before the election and that mentions a candidate shall be considered an election-related communication.
  • Cannot be reasonably construed in any way other than advocating for the election or defeat of said political party or ideology, aspirant, or candidate; or that entirely reproduces campaign material of such political party or ideology, aspirant, or candidate.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 621)

What Communications are Covered

A communication that is:

  • Made through any radio or television station, cable or satellite television, the Internet, through computers, newspapers, magazines, billboards or direct mail to 500 people or more.
  • Made within 90 days before the election.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 621)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who conducts or transmits any electioneering communication must file a report. The report must include the following information:

  • The name, address and telephone number of the person who made or shall make the disbursement, and of the organizations related thereto, as well as the name, address, and telephone number of any person that shares or dwells at the address of the person who made or must make the disbursement, and the name, address and telephone number of the guardian or guardians of the accounting records or books of the person who made or shall make the disbursements.
  • The address of the main place of business of the person who made or shall make the disbursement, if other than a natural person.
  • The amount and date of each disbursement exceeding $200.
  • The election, referendum, plebiscite, or consultation to which the disbursement pertains and, if applicable, the names of the candidates identified or to be identified, as well as the office for which they are running.
  • The names and addresses of all the persons that made a contribution to the person who files the report to defray electioneering communications, subject to being included in the report during the calendar year prior to the date of the report, of an amount that totals or exceeds $500, whether by itself on in the aggregate.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 627f)

GUAM

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

Guam does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS

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Not available

AMERICAN SAMOA

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Not available

VIRGIN ISLANDS

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Definition of Electioneering Communications

The Virgin Islands does not define electioneering communications. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

ALABAMA

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Persons.

A person means an individual, partnership, committee, association, corporation, labor organization or any other organization or group of persons.

(Ala. Code § 17-5-2)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidate committees must file an Appointment of Principal Campaign Committee with the secretary of state or judge of probate within five days after any person becomes a candidate for office.
  • PACs anticipating either to receive contributions or make expenditures during the calendar year in an aggregate amount more than $1,000 must register with the secretary of state or the judge of probate. A statement of organization must be filed within 10 days after the PAC’s organization or within 10 days after the date the committee anticipates it will receive contributions or make expenditures in an aggregate amount over $1,000.

(Ala. Code §§ 17-5-4, 17-5-5)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates are required to file disclosure reports when they either raise or spend more than $1,000 with the secretary of state. Candidates who have not reached the $1,000 threshold are exempt from filing.
  • PACs are required to file when they participate in an election or have raised or spent more than $1,000 to influence the election with the secretary of state.
  • Any person, including a candidate, who spends more than $1,000 on an electioneering communication is required to file a disclosure report with the secretary of state.

(Ala. Code § 17-5-8)

Reporting Timelines

During the election cycle, but no earlier than 12 months before an election, campaign finance disclosure reports are filed at specific times before the election. Candidates, PACs and persons must file:

  • Annual reports for each campaign committee, PAC and elected official subject to disclosure reporting requirements must be filed annually with the secretary of state or judge of probate no later than Jan. 31 of each year and it covers each calendar year.
  • Monthly reports are due no later than the second business day of the following month and must include all reportable transactions for the previous full month, including all unreported activity to date.
  • Weekly reports are due on the Monday of the following week for each of the four weeks before the election. For reporting purposes, a week is defined as running from a Saturday to a Friday. The first weekly report should include all reportable transactions that occurred since the most recently filed prior report.
  • Daily reporting begins on the eighth day before the election. Daily reports are due for principal campaign committees or PACs that receive or spend $5,000 or more on that day with a view toward influencing an election. Daily reports are due on those days that a $5,000 daily threshold is met.

(Ala. Code §17-5-8)

Filing Method

  • All candidates for all legislative, state school board, county, district and statewide offices must file reports electronically.
  • Reports for municipal offices may be filed by paper until Aug. 1, 2023; after that date, all reports must be filed electronically.

Penalties

  • A candidate who intentionally violates a reporting requirement is guilty, upon conviction, of a Class A misdemeanor. The attorney general or a district attorney may prosecute any person who violates the Fair Campaign Practices Act.
  • Any person who fails to timely file a report, or files a materially inaccurate report, may be levied an administrative penalty by the State Ethics Commission.
  • Any person who fails to comply with the advertising requirements is a Class A misdemeanor and, upon conviction, is subject to a fine of not more than $6,000 and/or imprisonment of not more than one year.
  • The schedule of civil penalties:
  • The lesser of $300 or 10% of the amount of contributions or expenditures not properly reported for a first offense in an election cycle.
  • The lesser of $600 or 15% of the amount of contributions or expenditures not properly reported for a second offense in an election cycle.
  • The lesser of $1,200 or 20% of the amount of contributions or expenditures not properly reported for a third or subsequent offense in an election cycle.

(Ala. Code §§ 17-5-19, 17-5-19.1, 13A-5-7, 13A-5-12)

ALASKA

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates
  • Groups, include:
  • State and regional political parties.
  • Political action committees (PACs).
  • Any combination of two or more individuals acting jointly who organize for the principal purpose of influencing the outcome of one or more elections and who act to influence the outcome of an election.
  • Any combination of two or more individuals acting jointly who organize for the principal purpose of filing an initiative proposal application or who files an initiative proposal application.
  • Nongroup entities
  • Nongroup entity means a person, other than an individual, that takes action the major purpose of which is to influence the outcome of an election and that cannot participate in business activities; does not have shareholders who have a claim on corporate earnings; and is independent from the influence of business corporations.
  • This may be a 501(c)(4) organization or group that doesn't participate in business. activities, does not have shareholders and is independent from the influence of business corporations.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.400)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must file a candidate registration form with the Alaska Public Offices Commission (APOC) within 15 days of filing their declaration of candidacy with the Division of Elections; they may file sooner if they want to be able to expend and accept campaign funds.
  • Any group, including a political party and an initiative committee, must register with the APOC before raising, soliciting, collecting, contributing, spending or incurring indebtedness of $500 or more in money or anything of value in the aggregate during a calendar year. This include making any expenditure in support of or in opposition to a candidate, a ballot proposition or question, an initiative proposal application.
  • Nongroup entities must register as a nongroup entity before making any contribution or independent expenditure.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.050, 2 AAC 50.292)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and PACs do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Groups that receive contributions or spend or incur obligations over $500 must file reports with the APOC.
  • Every individual, person, nongroup entity or group that makes independent expenditures and receive contributions for independent expenditures over $500 must file reports with the APOC.
  • Every individual, person, nongroup entity or group that makes an independent expenditure or electioneering communications over $250 within 10 days of an election must file a report with the APOC.
  • Every individual, person, nongroup entity or group contributing $500 or more to a group organized for the principal purpose of influencing the outcome of a proposition must file a report with the APOC.

Reporting Timelines

  • Campaign finance disclosure reports are due 30 days before an election, seven days before an election and 105 days after an election for candidates and groups.
  • Independent expenditure and ballot proposition groups are required to file independent expenditure reports in addition to the reports listed above. These reports must be filed no later than 10 days after the expenditure has been made, unless the expenditure exceeds $250 and is made within nine days of the election. In that case, the report must be filed within 24 hours.
  • Independent expenditure groups must file an additional 24 hour report when receiving a contribution over $2,000 in the aggregate from a single contributor at any time during the election cycle.
  • Every individual, person or group contributing a total of $500 or more to a ballot proposition group must file a statement of contribution within 30 days of making the contribution.
  • Electioneering communications have the same reporting as independent expenditures.

Filing Method

Campaign finance disclosure reports may be filed electronically or by paper.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.110)

Penalties

  • Late reports are assessed an initial civil penalty. A filer may appeal to the commission to reduce or waive a penalty. The initial civil penalty assessment is based on two factors: the number of days the report is late; and whether the report is due immediately before an election.
  • Any person who fails to file a completed and certified report on time is subject to a civil penalty of not more than $500 a day for each day the delinquency continues as determined by the commission.
  • Any person who delays in reporting a contribution is subject to a civil penalty of not more than $1,000 a day for each day the delinquency continues as determined by the commission.
  • Misreports or failures to disclose the true source of a contribution is subject to a civil penalty of not more than the amount of the contribution that is the subject of the misreporting or failure to disclose. If the violation was intentional, a civil penalty of not more than three times the amount of the contribution may be imposed.
  • Any other violations of the State Election Campaigns chapter, except as otherwise specified in this section, is subject to a civil penalty of not more than $50 a day for each day the violation continues as determined by the commission.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.390)

ARIZONA

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate.
  • Political committees.
  • Includes candidate committees, political action committees (PAC) or a political party.
  • Entities.
  • Entity means a corporation, limited liability company, labor organization, partnership, trust, association, organization, joint venture, cooperative, unincorporated organization or association or other organized group that consists of more than one individual.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • A political committee must file a statement of organization with the filing officer within 10 days after qualifying as a committee.
  • A candidate for election or retention must register as a candidate committee if the candidate receives contributions or makes expenditures, in any combination, of at least $1,000 in connection with that candidacy. (Due to biennial adjustments, the registration threshold increases by $100 every odd-numbered year.)
  • An entity must register as a PAC if the entity is organized for the primary purpose of influencing the result of an election and the entity knowingly receives contributions or makes expenditures, in any combination, of at least $1,000 in connection with any election during a calendar year.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. §§ 16-906, 16-905)

Reporting Thresholds

Candidates, political committees and entities that receive contributions or makes expenditures, in any combination, of at least $1,000 must file a report with the secretary of state.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 16-901)

Reporting Timelines

  • Candidates file annual, quarterly and pre-election and post-election reports. The annual report is a cumulative report due in January. The quarterly reports are due in April, July, October and January. If there is an election during a quarter, then a pre-election report must be filed. The quarter will be split between a pre-election and post-election report. Pre-election reports are filed not later than 10 days before a primary and general election. Post-election reports are filed not later than 15 days after the applicable calendar quarter.
  • PACs, political committees and political parties file quarterly reports, pre-election reports and post-election reports. If there is an election during a quarter, then a pre-election report must be filed. The quarter will be split between a pre-election and post-election report. Pre-election reports are filed not later than 10 days before a primary and general election. Post-election reports are filed not later than 15 days after the applicable calendar quarter.
  • Independent expenditures and ballot measure expenditures are reported quarterly. During a quarter with an election, independent expenditures and ballot measure expenditures must be disclosed in pre-election and post-election reports. Pre-election reports are filed not later than 10 days before a primary and general election. Post-election reports are filed not later than 15 days after the applicable calendar quarter.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 16-927)

Filing Requirement

Campaign finance disclosure reports may be filed electronically or by paper.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. §§ 16-916, 16-958)

Penalties

  • Late reports carry a penalty. The penalties accrue at $10 per day for the first 15 days following the deadline, and $25 per day for each day thereafter the report is not filed.
  • Reporting requirement violations carry a civil penalty of $100 per day for candidates for the legislature and $300 per day for candidates for statewide office. The penalty shall be doubled if the amount not reported for a particular election cycle exceeds 10% of the adjusted primary or general election spending limit. No penalty shall exceed twice the amount of expenditures or contributions not reported.
  • A committee that fails to file a complete report within 30 days after the filing deadline, the filing officer has discretion to refer the matter to the enforcement officer. The attorney general is the enforcement officer for statewide and legislative candidates and the county, city or town attorney (as applicable) is the enforcement officer for local candidates.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 16-937)

ARKANSAS

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Political party committees.
  • Political committees (Includes independent expenditure committees, ballot question committees, legislative question committees, exploratory committees and legislative caucus committees).
  • Persons.
  • Person means any individual, proprietorship, firm, partnership, joint venture, syndicate, labor union, business trust, company, corporation, association, committee or any other organization or group of persons acting in concert.

(Ark. Code Ann. § 7-6-223)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must file a candidate information and receipt with the secretary of state.
  • PACs and political committees must register with the secretary of state within 15 days after accepting contributions during a calendar year which, in the aggregate, exceeds $500 in the aggregate.
  • County political party committees must register with the secretary of state within 15 days after accepting contributions during a calendar year which, in the aggregate, exceeds $5,000.

(Ark. Code Ann.  §§ 7-6-215, 7-6-216, 7-6-227)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, PACs, party committees and political committees that receive contributions or makes expenditures that exceed $500 must report with the secretary of state.
  • A person who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount or value over $500 in a calendar year must file reports with the secretary of state.

Reporting Timelines

  • Candidates file quarterly, monthly, pre-election and final reports.
  • A quarterly report is all contributions received, and expenditures made during a calendar year in which a candidate is not listed on any ballot for election.
  • In an election year, monthly reports are required for all contributions received and expenditures made that have not been disclosed on previous reports.
  • Pre-election reports are only required for candidates with opponents. Before any primary, runoff, general or special election in which the candidate’s name appears on the ballot, a report of all contributions received, and expenditures made between the previous report and 10 days before the election.
  • Final reports are due no later than 30 days after the end of the month in which the candidate’s name appeared on the ballot in any primary, runoff or general election. A final report is all contributions received, and expenditures made that have not been disclosed on previous reports.
  • PACs, political committees and political parties file quarterly reports.
  • Exploratory committees file monthly reports.
  • Independent expenditure reports for political committees, individuals and other persons may need to file:
  • 35 day pre-election report filed no later than 30 days prior to election.
  • 10 day pre-election report filed no later than seven days prior to election.
  • Final report filed no later than 30 days after the end of the month in which the election is held.

(Ark. Code Ann. § 7-6-207, 153-00 Ark. Code R. § 006)

Filing Method

All statewide and legislative candidates file online.

A person or independent expenditure committee may file by paper if the person or independent expenditure committee:

  • Does not have access to the technology necessary to submit reports in electronic form.
  • If submitting reports in electronic form would constitute a substantial hardship for the person or independent expenditure committee.
  • Submits a notarized affidavit.

PACs and political parties may file electronically or by paper.

Exploratory committees may file reports by paper if the exploratory committee does not have access to the technology necessary to submit reports online and submitting reports electronically would constitute a substantial hardship.

(Ark. Code Ann.§§ 7-6-216, 7-6-230, 7-6-231, 153-00 Ark. Code R. § 006)

Penalties

  • A person who knowingly fails to comply with the campaign financing chapter shall upon conviction be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor unless a different penalty applies.
  • Candidates who fail to file or file untimely the pre-election contribution and expenditure reports will be subject to the following fines:
  • Any report filed up to 10 days late will be subject to a $25 fee for the first violation or $50 for repeated violations.
  • Any report filed 11 to 20 days late will be subject to a $50 fee for the first violation or $100 for repeated violations.
  • Any report filed 21 to 30 days late will be subject to a $100 fee for the first violation or $200 for repeated offenses.
  • A candidate who gives false or materially misleading information on a contribution and expenditure report or omits information from that report may be assessed a fine of not less than $25 or more than $1,000 for each violation and may be issued a public letter of caution, warning or reprimand.

(Ark. Code Ann. §§ 7-6-202, 7-6-207, 7-6-208, 7-6-209, 7-6-218)

CALIFORNIA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Recipient committees.
  • Persons.

Recipient committee means any person (including an officeholder or candidate), organization, group or other entity that raise contributions from others totaling $2,000 or more in a calendar year to spend on California elections. Recipient committees include: candidate committees, political action committees, independent expenditure committees, ballot measure committees and political party committees.

Person means an individual, proprietorship, firm, partnership, joint venture, syndicate, business trust, company, corporation, limited liability company, association, committee and any other organization or group of persons acting in concert.

(Cal. Gov't Code § 82047)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Recipient committees must file the statement of organization with the secretary of state within 10 days after the committee has qualified as a committee. Committee means any person or combination of persons who directly or indirectly does any of the following:

  • Receives contributions totaling $2,000 or more in a calendar year.
  • Makes independent expenditures totaling $1,000 or more in a calendar year; or
  • Makes contributions totaling $10,000 or more in a calendar year to or at the behest of candidates or committees.

Independent expenditure committees, that don’t qualify as a recipient committee, must file the statement of organization within 24 hours if the committee makes independent expenditures of $1,000 or more to support or oppose a candidate or candidates for office, and it’s during the 90-day period preceding the date of the election or on the date of the election.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Recipient committees that have raised or spent or will raise or spend $2,000 or more during a calendar year must report with the Fair Political Practices Commission.
  • Multipurpose organizations that have raised or spent more than $50,000 in a period of 12 months or more than $100,000 in a period of four consecutive calendar years must report with the Fair Political Practices Commission. Multipurpose organizations are nonprofit organizations, such as 501(c)(3)s, 501(c)(4)s, or labor unions. A multipurpose organization qualifies as a recipient committee for reporting purposes.
  • Independent expenditure committees that make independent expenditures of $1,000 or more during a calendar year must report with the Fair Political Practices Commission.
  • Any person who makes a payment or a promise of payment totaling $50,000 or more for a communication that clearly identifies a candidate for elective state office but does not expressly advocate the election or defeat of the candidate, and that is disseminated, broadcast or otherwise published within 45 days of an election must report with the Fair Political Practices Commission

(Cal. Gov't Code §§ 84222, 85310)

Reporting Timelines

Recipient committees may need to report campaign activity at the following times.

  • Semi-annual reports are filed on July 31 and January 31 each year.
  • Quarterly reports are required when a recipient committee spends $10,000 or more to support or oppose state elected officers. The committee would only need to file these statements during odd calendar years.
  • Pre-election reports are required two times before an election. The first statement covers the period up to 45 days before the election. The second statement covers the period up to 17 days before the election.

Any recipient committee making or receiving a contribution of $1,000 or more to support a candidate or ballot measure within 90 days before or on the date of an election must file a late contribution report within 24 hours.

Independent expenditures that total in the aggregate $1,000 or more are made to support or oppose a candidate or a state ballot measure in the 90 days before or on the date of the candidate’s or measure’s election is due within 24 hours.

Independent expenditures totaling $5,000 or more to support or oppose the qualification or passage of a state ballot measure outside the 90-day election cycle is due within 10 business days.

Electioneering communication reports must be filed online with the secretary of state’s office within 48 hours of the payment being made or promised.

(Cal. Gov't Code §§ 84203, 84204, 85310)

Filing Method

Campaign finance disclosure reports may be filed electronically or by paper. Electronic filing is required for campaign entities that have raised or spent $25,000.

Penalties

  • Failure to file campaign statements may result in late filing penalties of $10 per day. State committees may be fined $20 per day and fines of up to $5,000 per violation.
  • Any person who knowingly or willfully violates any provision of the Political Reform Act is guilty of a misdemeanor.
  • Any person who intentionally or negligently violates any of the reporting requirements will be liable in a civil action brought by the civil prosecutor or by a person residing within the jurisdiction for an amount not more than the amount or value not properly reported.
  • In addition to other penalties, a fine may be issued up to $10,000 or three times the amount the person failed to report properly or unlawfully contributed, expended, gave or received may be imposed upon conviction for each violation.

(Cal. Gov't Code §§ 91000, 91004)

COLORADO

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Political committees.
  • Political parties.
  • Issue committees.
  • Small donor committees.
  • Small-scale issue committees.
  • Independent expenditure committees.

Political committee means any person that have accepted or made contributions or expenditures over $200 to support or oppose the nomination or election of one or more candidates. Political committees do not include political parties, issue committees or candidate committees.

Issue committee means any person or any group of two or more persons, that has a major purpose of supporting or opposing any ballot issue or ballot question; or that has accepted or made contributions or expenditures over $200 to support or oppose any ballot issue or ballot question.

Small-scale issue committee is an issue committee that accepts or makes contributions or expenditures in an aggregate amount between $200 and $5,000.

Small donor committee means any political committee that has accepted contributions only from persons who each contributed no more than $50 in the aggregate per year.

Small-scale issue committee is an issue committee that accepts or makes contributions or expenditures in an aggregate amount between $200 and $5,000.

An Independent Expenditure Committee is one or more persons who make independent expenditures in an aggregate amount in excess of $1,000, or that collect in excess of $1,000 from one or more persons for the purpose of making an independent expenditure.

(Colo. Const. Art. XXVIII, Section 2)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • All candidate committees, political committees, small donor committees and political parties must register before accepting or making any contributions.
  • Independent expenditure committees that accept a donation that is given for the purpose of making an independent expenditure over $1,000 or that makes an independent expenditure over $1,000 must register within two business days of the date on which an aggregate amount of donations reaches $1,000.
  • Issue committees must register within ten calendar days of accepting or making contributions or expenditures over $200 to support or oppose any ballot issue or ballot question.

(C.R.S. § 1-45-108)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Political committees and issue committees must report accepting or making contributions or expenditures over $200 to support or oppose the nomination or election of one or more candidates and any ballot issue or ballot question with the secretary of state.
  • Independent expenditure committees must register and report when they have accepted or made an independent expenditure over $1,000 with the secretary of state.

(Colo. Const. Art. XXVIII, Section 2, C.R.S. § 1-45-108)

Reporting Timelines

Disclosure reports by candidates and committees are required to be filed with the secretary of state at the following times.

  • Quarterly. In off-election years, no later than the 15th calendar day following the end of the applicable quarter.
  • In election years:
  • On the first Monday in May and on each Monday every two weeks thereafter before the primary election.
  • On the first day of each month beginning the sixth full month before the major election; except that no monthly report shall be required on the first day of the month in which the major election is held.
  • On the first Monday in September and on each Monday every two weeks thereafter before the major election.
  • 35 days after the major election in election years.
  • 14 days before and 30 days after a special legislative election held in an off-election year.

Any single contribution, including loans and candidate loans, of $1,000 or more at any time within 30 days of a primary, general or regular biennial school election must be reported within 24 hours.

Any person, including a candidate and/or candidate committee, spending $1,000 or more per calendar year for broadcast or print messages that “unambiguously” refers to any candidate and are distributed within 30 days before a primary or 60 days before a general election, is required to report these expenditures.

Electioneering contributions and expenditures can be reported at the same time the committee reports other contributions and expenditures.

(C.R.S. § 1-45-108)

Filing Method

Disclosure reports must be filed electronically. Paper is allowed if a waiver is granted based on hardship or other good cause by the secretary of state.

(8 Colo. Code Regs. § 1505-6)

Penalties

  • Failure to file campaign reports may result in late filing penalties of $50 per day.
  • Failure to register a committee may result in a penalty. The penalty depends on the amount of contributions or donations accepted or expenditures made while out of compliance. 
  • If less than $1,000, the fine is at least $150.
  • If between $1,001 and $5,000, the fine is at least $300.
  • If greater than $5,000, the fine is at least $300 plus at least 10% f total amount of the contributions and expenditures made.
  • Failure to file complete and accurate reports carries a $100 fine per report plus 5% of the activity not accurately or completely reported.
  • Prohibited contributions, donations and expenditures carries a fine of at least $100 and 10% of the prohibited activity.
  • Any communication without a proper disclaimer is a noncompliant communication. If the noncompliant communication is corrected prior to the election, the fine will be at least 5% cost of the noncompliant communication including cost to broadcast. If the noncompliant communication is not corrected prior to the election, the fine will be at least 10% of the cost of the communication including cost to broadcast.

(8 Colo. Code Regs. § 1505-6)

CONNECTICUT

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political Parties.
  • Political Committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means a committee organized by a business entity or organization; persons other than individuals, or two or more individuals organized or acting jointly conducting their activities in or outside the state; an exploratory committee; a committee established by or on behalf of a slate of candidates in a primary for the office of justice of the peace, but does not mean a candidate committee or a party committee; a legislative caucus committee; or a legislative leadership committee.

Person means an individual, committee, firm, partnership, organization, association, syndicate, company trust, corporation, limited liability company or any other legal entity of any kind but does not mean the state or any political or administrative subdivision of the state.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-601, Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-601d)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Each candidate must register a single candidate committee to fund their campaign. However, there are exemptions to this requirement:

  • Candidates who intend to fund the campaign entirely from personal funds do not need to register a single candidate committee unless they expend more than $1,000 or accept any outside funds or in-kind contributions, in which case they must register within three days. If a candidate requests or receives funds or in-kind receipts from any outside source, the candidate must form a candidate committee within three days.
  • Candidates who do not intend to receive or expend over $1,000 in funds from all sources. If the candidate receives or expends over $1,000, they no longer qualify for exemption status and must form a candidate committee.
  • Candidates who do not intend to expend any funds for the campaign, including personal funds.

All statewide office and general assembly candidates are required to register no later than 10 days after becoming a candidate. An individual is deemed to have become a candidate if the candidate:

  • Has solicited or received contributions or made expenditures.
  • Has been endorsed or nominated by a political party.
  • Is otherwise qualified for placement on the ballot pursuant to the election laws (whether or not funds or resources have been solicited, received or spent).

All political committees must file a registration statement within 10 days after their organization. If a political committee is organized within 10 days prior to any primary, election or referendum in connection with which it intends to make any contributions or expenditures, the committee must immediately file a registration statement.

An exploratory committee is a committee formed by a candidate for a single primary or election to determine whether to seek nomination or election, and/or where the candidate has not yet determined which particular public office to seek, yet desires to raise and spend funds to “test the waters.” The exploratory committee must register before raising or spending any funds,

Party committees must register before soliciting or receiving any funds or make expenditures.

Any person who makes or obligates to make an independent expenditure or expenditures in an election or primary for the office of governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of the state, state treasurer, state comptroller, attorney general, state senator or state representative, which exceeds $1,000, during a primary campaign or a general election campaign must report.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-601)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and party committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Political committees and persons that receive or expend over $1,000 for purposes of the primary or election must report with the State Elections Enforcement Commission (SEEC).
  • Any person who makes or obligates to make an independent expenditure or expenditures in an election or primary more than $1,000 must report with the SEEC.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-608)

Reporting Timelines

Candidate must file disclosure statements due at the following times:

  • Quarterly reports are due on Jan. 10, April 10, July 10 and Oct. 10.
  • 7 days before the primary election.
  • 30 days after the primary election.
  • 7 days before the general election.
  • 7 days before a special election.
  • 45 days after the general election when the general election is not held in November.
  • Weekly reports are due if the candidate is in a race with another candidate.

Political committees, including independent expenditure political committees and referendum political committees must file disclosure statements at the following times:

  • Quarterly reports are due on Jan. 10, April 10, July 10 and Oct. 10.
  • 7 days before the primary election, if they have spent in connection with a primary.
  • 30 days following the primary, if they have spent in connection with a primary.
  • 7 days before the general election, if they have spent in connection with the election.

State party committees must file disclosure statements on Jan. 10, April 10, July 10 and the 12th day prior to any regular state or municipal election.

State central committees must file on the 12th day before any other election or any primary or referendum when they have made or received a contribution or expenditure in connection with an election, primary or referendum.

Any person, political committee or independent expenditure political committee must file reports within 24 hours of making or obligating to make independent expenditures or electioneering communications over $1,000.

Filing Method

Disclosure statements must be filed electronically, but a waiver may be obtained to file by paper. All candidate committees and exploratory committees of candidates running for statewide office and General Assembly that raise or spend $1,000 or more are required to file their disclosure statements electronically.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-675)

Penalties

  • A late filing penalty of $100 is charged for statements filed late. Any late statement that is not filed within 21 days after notification of a missed filing date, the treasurer is liable for a minimum penalty of $200 and may be liable for a fine of not more than $2,000 or imprisonment for not more than one year or both.
  • A person who is found to have knowingly and willfully violated any provisions of the campaign finance statutes faces a civil penalty of up to $25,000, unless a fine of a larger amount is otherwise provided for as a maximum fine in the Connecticut General Statutes.
  • A person knowingly filing a false report is a Class A misdemeanor.
  • Any person who violates any provision of Connecticut’s campaign finance laws is subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $2,000 or twice the amount of the improper contribution or payment, whichever is greater.
  • Any person who violates any provision of Connecticut’s campaign finance laws is subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $2,000 or twice the amount of the improper contribution or payment, whichever is greater.
  • Any person who fails to file a report for an independent expenditure or expenditures made or obligated to be made more than 90 days before the day of a primary or election, the person will be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $10,000. If a person fails to file a report 90 days or less before the day of a primary or election, the person will be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $20,000. Any failure to file is knowing and willful, the person will also be fined not more than $50,000 and the SEEC may refer the matter to the chief state attorney.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 9-7b, 9-623)

DELAWARE

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Political committees.
  • Political parties.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any organization or association, whether permanent or created for the purposes of a specific political campaign, which accepts contributions from or makes expenditures to any candidate, candidate committee or political party in an aggregate amount over $500 during an election period, not including independent expenditures.

Person includes any individual, corporation, company, incorporated or unincorporated association, general or limited partnership, society, joint stock company and any other organization or institution of any nature.

(Del. Code Ann. tit. 15, § 8002)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • A candidate must register after establishing a candidate committee and before accepting contributions or making expenditures.
  • Political committees and political parties must file a statement of organization no later than 24 hours after receiving any contribution or making any expenditure, in the aggregate amount, over $500 during an election period.

(Del. Code Ann. tit. 15, §§ 8003, 8005)

Reporting Thresholds

Any candidate, political committee or political party that accepts any contributions or makes any expenditures in an aggregate amount over $500 during an election period must report with the Delaware Department of Elections (DDE).

Any person, other than a candidate committee or political party, who makes an expenditure for any third-party advertisement more than $500 during an election period must file a report. Third-party advertisement means independent expenditures or electioneering communications with the DDE.

Reporting Timelines

In an election year, candidates, political committees and party committees must file reports 30 days and eight days before an election and an annual report.

In a non-election year, candidates, political committees and party committees must file an annual report.

Independent expenditure must be reported 48 hours after the expenditure was made. If the expenditure is 30 days before a primary or special election or 60 before a general, the report must be filed 24 hours after the expenditure.

Electioneering communication made 30 days before a primary or special election or 60 before a general must be filed 24 hours after the expenditure.

(Del. Code Ann. tit. 15, § 8030)

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports may be filed electronically or by paper.

(Del. Code Ann. tit. 15, §§ 8030, 8004)

Penalties

  • Failure to register and failure to keep records is a Class B misdemeanor.
  • A person who knowingly makes or accepts an illegal contribution or expenditure and knowingly filing a false report are Class A misdemeanors.
  • A person who knowingly accepting a contribution made in a fictitious name, in the name of another person or whose donor’s true name and address is not made known to the political committee is a Class G felony.
  • Failure to identify the purchaser of advertisement will be assessed a fine of $500 or 25% of the cost of the campaign advertisement subject thereto, whichever is greater.

(Del. Code Ann. tit. 15, § 8043)

FLORIDA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates
  • Political committees
  • Electioneering communications organizations
  • Persons

Political committee means a combination of two or more individuals, or a person other than an individual, that, in an aggregate amount over $500 during a single calendar year:

  • Accepts contributions for the purpose of making contributions to any candidate, political committee, affiliated party committee or political party.
  • Accepts contributions for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a candidate or the passage or defeat of an issue.
  • Makes expenditures that expressly advocate the election or defeat of a candidate or the passage or defeat of an issue.
  • Makes contributions to a common fund, other than a joint checking account between spouses, from which contributions are made to any candidate, political committee, affiliated party committee or political party.

Electioneering communications organization means any group, other than a political party, affiliated party committee or political committee, whose election-related activities are limited to making expenditures for electioneering communications or accepting contributions for the purpose of making electioneering communications and whose activities would not otherwise require the group to register as a political party or political committee.

Person means an individual or a corporation, association, firm, partnership, joint venture, joint stock company, club, organization, estate, trust, business trust, syndicate or other combination of individuals having collective capacity. The term includes a political party, affiliated party committee or political committee.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.011)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • A political committee that receives contributions or makes expenditures during a calendar year in an aggregate amount exceeding $500 or that seeks the signatures of registered electors in support of an initiative shall file a statement of organization within 10 days after its organization.
  • A political committee organized within 10 days of any election must immediately file the statement of organization.
  • Each candidate must file a statement within 10 days after filing the appointment of campaign treasurer and designation of campaign depository.
  • Each group must file a statement of organization as an electioneering communications organization within 24 hours after the date on which it makes expenditures for an electioneering communication over $5,000.
  • A combination of two or more individuals, or a person other than an individual (i.e., organization) must file as a political committee and submit campaign reports when during a calendar year, in excess of $500 aggregate, they:
  • Accept contributions or make expenditures to expressly advocate the election or defeat of a candidate or issue.
  • Accepts contributions for the purpose of contributing to any candidate, political committee, affiliated party committee or political party.or
  • Spnsor a proposed constitutional amendment by initiative and intend to seek signatures of registered electors.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.03, Fla. Stat. § 106.023)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Political committees that receive contributions or makes expenditures during a calendar year in an aggregate amount exceeding $500 must report with the Division of Elections (DOE).
  • Candidates must file reports after they register. No additional reporting threshold is required.
  • Each person who makes an independent expenditure or electioneering communication, in the aggregate amount of $5,000 or more, must file reports with the DOE.
  • Each electioneering communications organization must file regular reports of all contributions received and all expenditures made by or on behalf of the organization with the DOE.

Reporting Timelines

Candidates or political committees must file regular reports on the 10th day following the end of each calendar month.

In addition, a statewide candidate or political committee must file reports:

  • On the 60th day immediately preceding the primary election, and each week thereafter, with the last weekly report being filed on the fourth day immediately preceding the general election.
  • On the 10th day immediately preceding the general election, and each day thereafter, with the last daily report being filed the fifth day immediately preceding the general election.

All other candidates must file reports on the 60th day immediately preceding the primary election and bi-weekly on each Friday thereafter through and including the fourth day immediately preceding the general election, with additional reports due on the 25th and 11th days before the primary election and the general election.

Political parties must file quarterly reports.

Each person who makes an independent expenditure, in the aggregate amount of $5,000 or more, must file reports in the same manner and at the same time as a political committee supporting or opposing such candidate or issue.

Each electioneering communications organization must file regular reports of all contributions received and all expenditures made by or on behalf of the organization. Reports must be filed on the 10th day of each month.

For an electioneering communications organization required to file reports with the division, additional reports must be filed:

  • On the 60th day immediately preceding the primary election, and each week thereafter, with the last weekly report being filed on the fourth day immediately preceding the general election.
  • On the 10th day immediately preceding the general election, and every day thereafter excluding the fourth day immediately preceding the general election, with the last daily report being filed the day before the general election.

(Fla. Stat. §§ 106.07, 106.071)

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports must be filed electronically.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.0705)

Penalties

  • Failure to file a report carries a fine of $50 per day for first three days late. Thereafter, it is $500 per day; not to exceed 25% of total receipts for the period covered by the late report.
  • Any person who falsely reports or deliberately fails to include any information required by this chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree.
  • Any person who makes or authorizes any expenditure or any other expenditure prohibited by this chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree.
  • Any political committee that violates the independent expenditure requirements is liable for a civil fine of up to $5,000 to be determined by the Florida Elections Commission or the entire amount of the expenditures, whichever is greater.
  • General violations of the campaign financing chapter carry a civil fine of up to $1,000 per count. In determining the amount of such civil penalties, the commission or administrative law judge will consider mitigating and aggravating circumstances:
  • The gravity of the act or omission.
  • Any previous history of similar acts or omissions.
  • The appropriateness of such penalty to the financial resources of the person, political committee, affiliated party committee, electioneering communications organization or political party.
  • Whether the person, political committee, affiliated party committee, electioneering communications organization or political party has shown good faith in attempting to comply with the campaign finance provisions.

(Fla. Stat. §§ 106.07, 106.19, 106.087, 106.265)

GEORGIA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Campaign committees.
  • Independent committees.
  • Persons.

Campaign committee means any person, or committee which accepts contributions or makes expenditures designed to bring about the nomination or election of an individual to any elected office. The committee also means any person or any committee which accepts contributions or makes expenditures designed to bring about the approval or rejection by the voters of any proposed constitutional amendment, a state-wide referendum or a proposed question which is to appear on the ballot in this state or in a county or a municipal election in this state.

Independent committee means any committee, club, association, partnership, corporation, labor union or other group of persons, other than a campaign committee, political party or political action committee, which receives donations during a calendar year from persons who are members or supporters of the committee and which expends such funds either for the purpose of affecting the outcome of an election for any elected office or to advocate the election or defeat of any particular candidate.

Person means an individual, partnership, committee, association, corporation, limited liability company, limited liability partnership, trust, professional corporation or other business entity recognized in the State of Georgia, labor organization or any other organization or group of persons.

(Ga. Code Ann. § 21-5-3)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • A candidate and campaign committees must register before accepting any contributions or making any expenditures.
  • A PAC that receives contributions or makes expenditures during a calendar year in an aggregate amount exceeding $25,000 must register.
  • All individuals or other persons making contributions and expenditures to or on behalf of candidates which do not exceed $25,000 in the aggregate in one calendar year are not required to register.
  • Independent committees need to register prior to accepting contributions or making expenditures for the purpose of affecting the outcome of an election or advocates the election or defeat of any candidate.

(Ga. Code Ann. § 21-5-30, Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 189-3-.12)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, campaign and independent committees have no reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • PACS and persons making contributions and expenditures that exceed $25,000 in the aggregate in one calendar year must file reports with the Georgia Government Transparency & Campaign Finance Commission (GTCFC).

(Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 189-3-.12)

Reporting Timelines

In nonelection years, candidates, PACS and other political committees must file reports on Jan. 31 and June 30.

In election years, candidates, PACs and other political committees must file reports:

  • On Jan. 31, April 30, June 30, Sept. 30, Oct. 25 and Dec. 31.
  • Six days before any run-off primary or election in which the candidate is listed on the ballot.
  • 15 days prior to the special primary and six days prior to the special primary runoff or special election runoff.
  • All contributions of $1,000 or more received during the last report and the date of any election must be reported within two business days of receipt and also reported on the next succeeding regularly scheduled campaign contribution disclosure.

Any campaign committee which accepts contributions or makes expenditures designed to bring about the approval or rejection by the voters of a proposed constitutional amendment or a state-wide referendum must file a campaign contribution disclosure report 75, 45 and 15 days prior to the date of the election and must file a final report prior to Dec. 31 of the election year.

Independent committees must file disclosure reports as follows:

  • On the first day of each of the two calendar months preceding any election.
  • Two weeks prior to the date of an election.
  • Within the two-week period prior to the date of an election, the independent committee must report within two business days any contributions or expenditure of more than $1,000.
  • On Dec. 31 of the election year.
  • The independent committee must file a final report prior to Dec. 31 of the election year and file supplemental reports on June 30 and Dec. 31 of each year that such independent committee continues to accept contributions or make expenditures.

(Ga. Code Ann. § 21-5-34)

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports must be filed electronically.

(Ga. Code Ann. § 21-5-34)

Penalties

  • Any person who files a late report will be assessed a late fee of $125.
  • Any person who knowingly fails to comply with or knowingly violates the campaign finance chapter may result in a misdemeanor.
  • Any person who knowingly and willfully falsifies, conceals or covers up by any trick, scheme or device a material fact; makes a false, fictitious or fraudulent statement or representation; or makes or uses any false writing or document the knowingly filing of a false official document may constitute a felony and may result in imprisonment and/or up to a $1,000 fine.
  • The GTCFC may refer cases to the appropriate law enforcement authority for further investigation and prosecution.
  • The GTCFC has authority to issue an order directing a violator:
  • To cease and desist from violating the Act.
  • To make public complete statements containing the information.
  • To refile and correct the reports at issue.
  • To pay a civil penalty of up to $1,000 per violation for first violation; up to $10,000 per violation for second violation; and up to $25,000 per violation for third or subsequent violations.

(O.C.G.A. §§ 21-5-34, 21-5-6, 21-5-9, 16-10-20)

HAWAII

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions
  • Who needs to register with the state
  • Reporting thresholds
  • Reporting timelines
  • Filing methods
  • Penalties

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees
  • Non-candidate committees

Noncandidate committee means an organization, association, party or individual that has the purpose of making or receiving contributions, making expenditures or incurring financial obligations to influence the nomination for election, or the election, of any candidate to office, or for or against any question or issue on the ballot.

  • An independent expenditure committee means a noncandidate committee that has registered and certified to the Hawaii Campaign Spending Commission (HCSC) that it will only make independent expenditures.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-302)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Candidate committees must register within 10 days of the earlier of the date the candidate files nomination papers for office or the date the candidate or candidate committee receives contributions or makes or incurs expenditures of more than $100 in the aggregate during the applicable election period.

Noncandidate committees must register within 10 days of receiving contributions or making or incurring expenditures of more than $1,000, in the aggregate, in a two-year election period; or within two days of receiving contributions or making expenditures of more than $1,000, in the aggregate, in a two-year election period if it is within 30 days prior to an election.  

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-321)

Reporting Thresholds

Candidate committees receiving contributions or making or incurring expenditures of more than $100 in the aggregate during the reporting period must file reports with the HCSC.

Noncandidate committees receiving contributions or making or incurring expenditures of more than $1,000 in the aggregate during the reporting period must file reports with the HCSC.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-321)

Reporting Timelines

Candidate committees must file reports:

  • On April 30 in a general election year.
  • 30 calendar days before a primary, initial special or initial nonpartisan election.
  • 10 calendar days before a primary, initial special or initial nonpartisan election.
  • On Oct. 1 in a general election year.
  • 10 calendar days before a general, subsequent special or subsequent nonpartisan election. A candidate who is unsuccessful in a primary, initial special or initial nonpartisan election, or a candidate who is elected to office in the primary, initial special or initial nonpartisan election doesn’t need to file this report.
  • 20 calendar days after a primary, initial special or initial nonpartisan election.
  • 30 calendar days after a general, subsequent, subsequent special or subsequent nonpartisan election.
  • Supplemental reports are due on Jan. 31 and July 31 after an election year.

Non candidate committees must file reports:

  • 10 calendar days prior to a primary, special or nonpartisan election.
  • 10 calendar days prior to a general election.
  • On Oct. 1 in a general election year.
  • 20 calendar days after the primary, initial special or initial nonpartisan election.
  • 30 calendar days after a general, subsequent special or subsequent nonpartisan election.
  • Supplemental reports are due on Jan. 31 and July 31 after an election year.

Candidate and non-candidate committees that receive contributions from any person and any contributions made to a candidate aggregating more than $500 within the period of four to 14 days prior to an election, a late contribution report must be filed within three calendar days.

Candidate committees or noncandidate committees whose aggregate contributions and aggregate expenditures for the election period total $1,000 or less must file only a final election period report, 30 calendar days after a general, subsequent special or subsequent nonpartisan election.

Noncandidate committees that makes independent expenditures aggregating more than $500 within the period of four to 14 days prior to an election must file a report within three calendar days.

An expenditure for electioneering communications in an aggregate amount of more than $1,000 during any calendar year must be filed with the HCSC within 24 hours.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 11-333, 11-334, 11-335, 11-339)

Filing Method

Disclosure reports must be filed electronically with the commission.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-331)

Penalties

  • The HCSC may assess a fine against a person who is required to file a report and it is not filed by the due date or if the report is substantially defective or deficient. The fine for not filing a report by the due date, if assessed, will not exceed $50 per day for the first seven days, beginning with the day after the due date of the report, and will not exceed $200 per day thereafter; provided that:
  • In aggregate, the fine does not exceed 25% of the total amount of contributions or expenditures, whichever is greater, for the period covered by the report; and
  • The minimum fine for a report filed more than four days after the due date, if assessed, is $200.
  • Any candidate and noncandidate committee that does not file reports before an election will be fined, and it will not exceed $300 per day; provided that:
  • The fine does not exceed 25% of the total amount of contributions or expenditures, whichever is greater, for the period covered by the report; and
  • The minimum fine, if assessed, is $300.
  • Any report that is substantially defective or deficient, the HCSC will notify the candidate committee by first Class mail that the report is substantially defective or deficient and a fine may be assessed.
  • If the corrected report is not filed on or before the 14th day after the notice has been mailed, the HCSC will issue a fine that will not exceed $50 per day for the first seven days, beginning with the 15th day after the notice was sent, and will not exceed $200 per day thereafter; provided that:
  • The fine shall not exceed 25% of the total amount of contributions or expenditures, whichever is greater, for the period covered by the report; and
  • The minimum fine for not filing a corrected report more than 18 days after the notice, if assessed, is $200.
  • A knowing, intentional or reckless violation of campaign finance laws is a misdemeanor.
  • A knowing or intentionally violation of falsifying any report is a Class C felony.
  • Failure to provide disclaimers to advertisements is a fine of $25 per advertisement for a first violation, a fine of $100 per advertisement for a second violation and a fine of $500 per advertisement for a third violation for each advertisement that lacks the required disclaimer. Fines for further violations shall be determined by the HCSC but will not exceed an aggregate amount of $5,000.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-340)

IDAHO

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions
  • Who needs to register with the state
  • Reporting thresholds
  • Reporting timelines
  • Filing methods
  • Penalties

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates
  • Political committees
  • Nonbusiness entities
  • Persons

Political committee means:

  • Any person specifically designated to support or oppose any candidate or measure; or
  • Any person who receives contributions and makes expenditures in an amount exceeding $1,000 in any calendar year for the purpose of supporting or opposing one or more candidates or measures.
  • A county, district or regional committee of a recognized political party will not be considered a political committee unless such party committee has expenditures exceeding $5,000 in a calendar year.

Nonbusiness entity means any group of two or more individuals, a corporation, association, firm, partnership, committee, club or other organization that does not have as its principal purpose the conduct of business activities for profit; and received contributions, gifts or membership fees in the aggregate more than 10% of its total receipts for the year.

Person means an individual, corporation, association, firm, partnership, committee, political party, club or other organization or group of persons.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Individuals must register once they become a candidate. A person becomes a candidate when any of the following occurs:
  • Receives contributions, makes expenditures or reserves space or facilities with the intent to promote their candidacy for office.
  • Announces publicly their intent to run for office.
  • Files an Appointment of Political Treasurer.
  • Files a Declaration of Candidacy form.
  • Political committees must register if the committee is specifically designed to support or oppose any candidate or measure or the committee received contributions and made expenditures in an amount exceeding $500 in any calendar year for the purpose of supporting or opposing one or more candidates and/or measures.
  • Political committees, not specifically designed to support or oppose any candidate or measure, must register when the committee received contributions and made expenditures in an amount exceeding $1,000 in any calendar year.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Political committees, specifically designed to support or oppose any candidate or measure, must file disclosure reports with the secretary of state when the committee receives contributions and makes expenditures in an amount exceeding $500 in any calendar year.
  • Political committees, not specifically designed to support or oppose any candidate or measure, must file disclosure reports with the secretary of state when the committee receives contributions and makes expenditures in an amount exceeding $1,000 in any calendar year.
  • Candidates do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Any person that incurs costs over $100 when making an electioneering communication must file a report with the secretary of state.
  • Any person who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount more than $100 in support of or in opposition to any one candidate, political committee or measure must file a report with the secretary of state.
  • Any nonbusiness entity that is not a political committee making expenditures in or directed to voters in an amount more than $1,000 in any calendar year for the purpose of supporting or opposing one or more candidates or measures must file a statement with the secretary of state.

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political committees must file reports at the following times:

  • File monthly reports in an election year.
  • File annual reports in a non-election year.
  • Report any contribution of $1,000 or more within 48 hours of receiving the contribution.

Political committees must file independent expenditures with the reports mentioned above.

Each person who makes an independent expenditure in an aggregate amount of $1,000 or more must report the expenditure not more than 48 hours from the time of such expenditure.

Each person who makes electioneering communication expenditures in an aggregate amount more than $100 must file reports not less than seven days prior to the primary and general election and 30 days after the primary and general election.

Any person that incurs costs of $1,000 or more when making an electioneering communication must file a statement within 48 hours of incurring the costs for such communication.

Filing Method

Candidates and political committees must file campaign finance reports electronically, unless a waiver has been granted.

(Idaho Code § 67-6607)

Penalties

  • Any person who violates the campaign finance provisions of the Idaho Code will be liable for a civil fine not to exceed $250 if an individual, and not more than $2,500 if a person other than an individual. The burden of proof for such civil liability shall be met by showing a preponderance of the evidence.
  • Any person who fails to file a report on or before the reporting deadline will be liable in the amount of $50 per day beginning 48 hours after the deadline until the report is filed.
  • Any person who knowingly and willfully violates the campaign finance provisions is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, in addition to the fines mentioned above, may be imprisoned for not more than six months or be both fined and imprisoned.
  • The attorney general or the appropriate prosecuting attorney may prosecute any violations of this act. Prosecution must be commenced within two years after the date on which the violation occurred.

(Idaho Code § 67-6625)

ILLINOIS

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee includes a candidate political committee, a political party committee, a political action committee, a ballot initiative committee and an independent expenditure committee.

Person means a person, trust, partnership, committee, association, corporation or any other organization or group of persons.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-1.8, 10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-1.6)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Political committees, including candidate political committees, must file a statement of organization after reaching the $5,000 filing threshold. A committee must file within 10 days of creation or within two days if it is 30 days from an election.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-3)

Reporting Thresholds

  • A candidate committee or political committee must file campaign disclosure reports when it reaches $5,000 in contributions or expenditures with the Illinois State Board of Elections (ISBE).
  • The $5,000 threshold applies to any contributions or expenditures received or made with the purpose of securing a place on the ballot for, advocating the defeat or passage of, or engaging in electioneering communication requires that a committee file campaign disclosure documents with the ISBE.
  • A person who makes independent expenditures supporting or opposing a candidate does not qualify as a committee but is required to file a special written disclosure with the ISBE if the independent expenditures total more than $3,000 in a 12-month period.
  • Any persons, individuals, groups of persons or any organizations, political or otherwise, who have received or made expenditures in excess of $5,000 within a 12-month period for electioneering communication must file a report with the ISBE.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-1.8)

Reporting Timelines

  • Candidates and political committees must file quarterly reports on April 15, July 15, Oct. 15 and Jan. 15.
  • Candidates and political committees must file a report when any contribution of $1,000 or more within five business days after receipt of the contribution.
  • Political committees that make independent expenditures exceeding $1,000 must file a report within five business days after making the independent expenditure, except that the report must be filed within two business days after making the independent expenditure during the 60-day period before an election.
  • Independent expenditure committees that make large contributions (more than $250,000 for statewide office or $100,000 for all other elective offices) supporting or opposing a public official or candidate during the election cycle, in an aggregate, must file a written disclosure with the ISBE within two business days after making any expenditure that results in the independent expenditure committee exceeding the threshold.
  • A person who makes independent expenditures, including electioneering communications, supporting or opposing a candidate does not qualify as an independent expenditure committee must file a special written disclosure with the ISBE if the expenditures total more than $3,000 in a 12-month period within two business days.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-10)

Filing Method

  • Campaign disclosure reports may be filed electronically or by paper.
  • Electronic filing is required for all political committees that during the reporting period had at any time a balance or an accumulation of contributions of $10,000 or more, made aggregate expenditures of $10,000 or more or received loans of an aggregate of $10,000 or more.
  • A political committee that makes independent expenditures of $1,000 or more during the period 30 days or fewer before an election must electronically file a report with the Board within five business days.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-28)

Penalties

  • Civil penalty assessments for late filings:
  • If the committee's total receipts, total expenditures and balance remaining at the end of the reporting period for which the delinquent report was due are each $5,000 or less, and if the delinquent report is a quarterly report, the political committee shall be assessed a fine of $25 per business day for the first violation, $50 per business day for the second violation, and $75 per business day for the third and each subsequent violation, to a maximum of $5,000. However, the civil penalty for any committee shall not exceed $1,000 for first time offense involving a filing that is less than 10 days late.
  • If the committee's total receipts, total expenditures, or balance remaining at the end of the reporting period for which the delinquent report was due exceeds $5,000, and if the delinquent report is a quarterly report, the political committee will be assessed a fine of $50 per business day for the first violation, $100 per business day for the second violation, and $200 per business day for the third and each subsequent violation, to a maximum of $5,000. However, the civil penalty for any committee shall not exceed $1,000 for a first time offense involving a filing that is less than 10 days late.
  • The ISBE may assess a civil penalty against a committee for any violation of disclosure of contributions and expenditures. The fine will not exceed the amount of the contribution and may be no more than $500 for the first violation, no more than $1,000 for the second violation, no more than $2,000 for a third violation, and no more than $3,000 for any subsequent violations.
  • The receiving of contributions solicited illegally is a Class A misdemeanor.
  • The willful failure to file or the willful filing of false or incomplete information is a civil fine of up to $5,000.
  • The willful filing of a false complaint is a Class B misdemeanor.
  • Any person who fails or refuses to comply with an order, stipulation, settlement or consent order by the Board may be assessed a civil penalty in an amount not to exceed $5,000; except that for state officers and candidates and political committees formed for statewide office, the civil penalty may not exceed $10,000.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-10, 5/9-25.2, 5/9-26, 5/9-26)

INDIANA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Party committees.
  • Political action committees (PAC).

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must file a statement of organization not later than 10 days after becoming a candidate (that is, raising or spending more than $100 threshold dollar); or seven days after filing either a declaration of candidacy, a petition of nomination, a certificate of nomination, a certificate of candidate selection to fill a ballot vacancy, or declaration of intent to be a write-in candidate.
  • PACs and party committees must file a statement of organization not later than 10 days after it becomes a committee.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates who receive more than $100 in contributions or make more than $100 in expenditures must file disclosure reports with the secretary of state.
  • PACs that accept contributions or makes expenditures during a calendar year to influence the election of a candidate for state, legislative, local or school board office or the outcome of a public question that will appear on the ballot in Indiana; and receives or spends, in the aggregate, over $100 must file disclosure reports with the secretary of state.

(Burns Ind. Code Ann. § 3-5-2-37)

Reporting Timelines

  • Non-statewide candidates on the ballot, party committees and PACs must file annual (January), pre-primary (April) and pre-election (October) reports.
  • Statewide candidates (on the ballot) must file annual (January) and quarterly (April, July, October, November) reports.
  • Statewide candidates (not on ballot) must file annual and semi-annual reports.
  • Any large contribution that is received by a candidate for a state office or candidate’s committee that is at least $1,000 after the end of a reporting period and not less than 48 hours before an election must file supplemental reports within 48 hours.
  • Any single contribution over $10,000 that is received by a candidate for a statewide office at any time must be reported seven days after the contribution is received.

(Burns Ind. Code Ann. § 3-9-5-22)

Filing Method

  • Candidates for statewide and state legislative office must file all campaign finance reports and documents electronically.
  • Other candidates and committee may file electronically or by paper.
  • Contributions of $1,000 or more can be filed by facsimile transmission or as an electronic report.

(Burns Ind. Code Ann. § 3-9-5-22).

Penalties

  • Late filings carry a fine of $50 per calendar day up to a maximum fine of $1,000 for reports filed past the deadline. Failure to timely file a campaign finance report may also result in criminal penalties.
  • Failure to correct the report in a timely manner carry a fine of $10 per calendar day up to a maximum fine of $100. Any person who fails to file a correction to a defective report after being notified to do so is subject to a civil penalty up to $100. The Indiana Election Commission or county election board may add investigative costs to the penalty.
  • A person who knowingly files a fraudulent report commits a level six felony and is subject to a $10,000 fine, two and one-half years imprisonment, or both.
  • A person who fails to file a report with the proper office commits a Class B misdemeanor.

(Burns Ind. Code Ann. §§ 3-9-4-16, 3-9-4-17, 3-14-1-13)

IOWA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any of the following:

  • A committee, but not a candidate’s committee, that accepts contributions over $1,000 in the aggregate, makes expenditures over $1,000 in the aggregate, or incurs indebtedness over $1,000 in the aggregate in any one calendar year to expressly advocate the nomination, election, or defeat of a candidate for public office, or to expressly advocate the passage or defeat of a ballot issue.
  • An association, lodge, society, cooperative, union, fraternity, sorority, educational institution, civic organization, labor organization, religious organization or professional organization that accepts contributions over $1,000 in the aggregate, makes expenditures over $1,000 in the aggregate, or incurs indebtedness over $1,000 in the aggregate in any one calendar year to expressly advocate the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate for public office, or to expressly advocate the passage or defeat of a ballot issue.
  • A person, other than an individual, that accepts contributions over $1,000 in the aggregate, makes expenditures over $1,000 in the aggregate, or incurs indebtedness over $1,000 in the aggregate in any one calendar year to expressly advocate that an individual should or should not seek election to a public office prior to the individual becoming a candidate.

Person means any individual, corporation, government or governmental subdivision or agency, business trust, estate, trust, partnership or association, labor union or any other legal entity.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Political committees that accept contributions, makes expenditures or incurs indebtedness over $1,000 in the aggregate in any one calendar year to expressly advocate the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate for public office, or to expressly advocate the passage or defeat of a ballot issue must register within 10 days.
  • Candidate committee that accepts contributions, expend funds or incur indebtedness over $1,000 in the aggregate in any calendar year must register within 10 days.

(Iowa Code § 68A.201)

Reporting Thresholds

Candidates and political committees that accept contributions, makes expenditures or incurs indebtedness over $1,000 in the aggregate in any one calendar year must file disclosure reports with the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board (IECDB).

(Iowa Code § 68A.102)

Reporting Timelines

Candidate for statewide office, general assembly or a judge standing for retention must file campaign disclosure reports:

  • Annually and quarterly on May 19, July 19, Oct, 19 and Jan. 19 in an election year. In addition, pre-primary and pre-general reports must be filed.
  • Annually on Jan. 19 in a non-election year.

Political committees must file campaign disclosure reports:

  • May 19, July 19, Oct. 19 and Jan. 19 in an election year.
  • Annually on Jan. 19 in a non-election year.

PACs must file campaign disclosure reports:

  • Quarterly on May 19, July 19, Oct. 19 and Jan. 19 in an election year.
  • Semi-annually on July 19 and Jan. 19 in a non-election year.

An independent expenditure statement must be filed within 48 hours of the making of an independent expenditure over $1,000 in the aggregate, or within 48 hours of disseminating the communication to its intended audience, whichever is earlier.

(Iowa Code §§ 68A.402, 68A.404, 351 IAC 4.9)

Filing Method

Disclosure reports must be filed electronically.

(351 IAC 4.8)

Penalties

  • Late filings of a report may carry a civil penalty. The amount of the civil penalty is automatically set by the IECDB based on the number of days late and if it is a repeat violation.
  • Statewide, general assembly, state statutry, state political committees and a judge standing for retention shall be assessed civil penalties for late-filed reports:
  • One to 14 consecutive days delinquent $50 (first time) $100 (repeat).
  • 31 to 45 consecutive days delinquent $200 (first time) $300 (repeat).
  • 15 to 30 consecutive days delinquent $100 (first time) $200 (repeat).
  • General assembly candidates' cmmittees required to file supplementary disclosure reports will be assessed a $200 civil penalty for filing a supplementary report one or more days late. Statewide committees required to file supplementary disclosure reports shall be assessed a $400 civil penalty for filing a supplementary report one or more days late.
  • The IECDB, after a hearing and upon a finding that a campaign finance violation, may do one or more of the following:
  • Issue an order requiring the violator to cease and desist from the violation found.
  • Issue an order requiring the violator to take any remedial action deemed appropriate by the board.
  • Issue an order requiring the violator to file any report, statement or other information.
  • Issue a written recommendation to the violator’s appointing authority that the violator be removed or suspended from office and include in the recommendation the length of the suspension.
  • Issue an order requiring the violator to pay a civil penalty of not more than $2,000 for each violation.
  • Issue a referral of the complaint and supporting information to the attorney general or appropriate county attorney with a recommendation for prosecution or enforcement of criminal penalties.
  • Any person who willfully violates any of the campaign finance provisions will, upon conviction, be guilty of a serious misdemeanor.

(Iowa Code § 68A.701)

KANSAS

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate.
  • Party committee.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any combination of two or more individuals or any person other than an individual, a major purpose of which is to expressly advocate the nomination, election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate for state or local office or make contributions to or expenditures for the nomination, election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate for state or local office.

Person means any individual, committee, corporation, partnership, trust, organization or association.

(K.S.A. § 25-4143)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must register not later than 10 days after becoming a candidate.
  • Party committees and political committees which anticipates receiving contributions or making expenditures for a candidate for state office must file a statement of organization with the secretary of state not later than 10 days after establishment of such committee.

(K.S.A. § § 25-4144, 25-4145)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates that receive $1,000 or more in contributions and spends $1,000 or more must file reports with the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission (KGEC). An Affidavit of Exemption can be filed in lieu of the receipts and expenditures reports if the candidate anticipates receiving less than $1,000 in total contributions and anticipates spending less than $1,000 in total expenditures in each of the primary and general elections.
  • An Affidavit of Exemption may be filed by a candidate who anticipates receiving less than $1,000 in total contributions and anticipates spending less than $1,000 in total expenditures in each of the primary and general elections.
  • Party and political committees that receives $1,000 or more in contributions and spends $1,000 or more must file reports with the KGEC.
  • An Affidavit of Exemption can only be filed by a party committee or political committee that anticipates receiving contributions less than $1,000 and spending less than $1,000 in the calendar year. To qualify for filing the Affidavit, the party committee or political committee cannot receive any single contribution over $50.
  • Any individual or organization, other than a political or party committee, that makes an independent expenditure in the amount of $100 or more is required to file a report with the KGEC.

(K.S.A. §§ 25-4173, 25-4175, 25-4148a)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political committees must file the following reports in an election year:

  • In July, October and January.
  • On the eighth day preceding the primary election.
  • On the eighth day preceding a general election.
  • On Jan. 10 of the year after an election year.

In a non-election year, a report must be filed on Jan. 10 in the following calendar year.

Any candidate, political and party committee that receives a contribution in the amount of $300 or more beginning 11 days before the primary or general election and ending on the Monday preceding the date of election must file a last-minute contributions report.

In addition to the reports mentioned above, any political and party committee that makes an independent expenditure more than $300 beginning 11 days before the primary or general election and ending on the Wednesday preceding the date of the election must file a last-minute independent expenditures report.

Any political and party committee that makes an independent expenditure on the Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday immediately preceding the election must file a daily report.

Any person engaging in an activity promoting the adoption or repeal of a provision of the Kansas constitution who accepts any contributed moneys for such activity must file:

  • An annual report in January.
  • A preliminary report 15 days prior to each election at which a proposed constitutional amendment is submitted.
  • A supplement report 15 days after each election at which a proposed constitutional amendment is submitted.

An Affidavit of Exemption requesting an exemption from the above reporting requirements must be filed on or before the due date for the first receipts and expenditures report. If the affidavit is received after the due date for the first receipts and expenditures report, it will be invalid, and the campaign or committee will be required to file all receipts and expenditures reports for the election year.

(K.S.A. § 25-4148)

Filing Method

Campaign finance reports may be filed electronically or by paper.

(K.S.A. § 25-4158a, K.S.A. § 25-4148b)

Penalties

  • The KGEC may assess a civil fine against any person for a violation of the campaign finance act in an amount not to exceed $5,000 for the first violation, $10,000 for the second violation and $15,000 for the third violation and subsequent violations.
  • Any person who fails to file reports will be assessed a civil penalty of $10 per day for each day that such report or statement remains unfiled, except that no such civil penalty shall exceed $300. The candidate will be liable for a civil penalty of $100 for the first day the report is more than 48 hours late and $50 for each subsequent day the report is late, but in no case shall the civil penalty exceed $1,000. A political committee will be liable for a civil penalty of $100 for the first day the report is more than 48 hours late and $50 for each subsequent day the report is late, but in no case shall the civil penalty exceed $1,000.
  • Failure to file a campaign finance report is a Class A misdemeanor.
  • The intentional making of any false material statements in a report or statement made under the campaign finance act is a Class A misdemeanor.

(K.S.A. § 25-4181, K.S.A. § 25-4152, K.S.A. § 25-4167, K.S.A. § 25-4168)

KENTUCKY

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates or campaign committees.
  • Permanent committees.
  • Other committees.

Permanent committee means a group of individuals, including an association, committee or organization, other than a campaign committee, political issues committee, inaugural committee, caucus campaign committee or party executive committee, which is established as, or intended to be, a permanent organization having as a primary purpose expressly advocating the election or defeat of one or more clearly identified candidates, slates of candidates or political parties, which functions on a regular basis throughout the year. A political action committee is a permanent committee.

Other committee includes caucus campaign committees, political issues committees, executive committees of a political party and inaugural committees.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. § 121.015)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidate, permanent and other committees, must register with the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance (KREF) by filing official notice of intention at the time of organization.
  • Federal political action committees (PAC) and out-of-state PACs are exempt from registering in Kentucky.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. §  121.170)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Permanent and other committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported. Candidates and political issues committees must file reports with the KREF if the committee receives contributions or expends over $3,000 in one election. Candidates and political issues committees that do not anticipate or expect to go over the $3,000 threshold must file an exemption for each primary, regular or special election.

Reporting Timelines

  • Candidates and campaign committees must file quarterly and annual reports. In addition, if candidates raise or spend over $3,000 for an election, they must file 30-day pre-election, 15-day pre-election, 30-day post-election and 60-day post-election supplemental reports.
  • Permanent committees must file quarterly reports on Mar. 31, June 30, Sept. 30 and Dec. 31.
  • Executive committees and caucus campaign committees file semi-annual reports.
  • All independent expenditure reports must be submitted electronically within 48 hours of the date that the communication is publicly distributed or otherwise publicly disseminated.
  • Political issue committees must file 60-day pre-general election report, 30-day pre-general election report, 15-day pre-general election report, annual report in December, 30-day post-general election report and a 60-day post-general election report.
  • Political issues committees that register prior to the year of the election for which the public question or constitutional amendment will appear on the ballot will have additional reports due on a quarterly basis until the year of the election.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. §  121.180; 32 Ky. Admin. Regs. 2:100)

Filing Method

Disclosure reports must be filed electronically.

Penalties

  • Any person who knowingly violates the campaign finance provisions may be guilty of a Class D felony. Violations include, but are not limited to:
  • Failure to make required reports or to file reports at times specified.
  • Making any false statement or report.
  • Giving money under a fictitious name. or
  • Making any communication violation.
  • Substantial civil penalties may also be assessed for violations committed unknowingly.
  • Any candidate, slate of candidates or political issues committee that is exempt from filing campaign finance reports that accepts contributions or makes expenditures in excess of the $3,000 limit without rescinding the request for exemption in a timely manner is subject to a fine of not less than $500.
  • The attorney general, a commonwealth’s attorney, the KREF or any qualified voter may sue for injunctive relief to compel compliance.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. § 121.990)

LOUISIANA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

The following must file reports of contributions and expenditures:

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees, including political action committee (PAC).
  • Persons.

Political committee means two or more persons, other than a husband and wife, and any corporation organized for the primary purpose of supporting or opposing one or more candidates, propositions, recalls of a public officer, or political parties, which accepts contributions in the name of the committee, or makes expenditures from committee funds or in the name of the committee, or makes a transfer of funds to or receives a transfer of funds from another committee, or receives or makes loans in an aggregate amount over $500 within any calendar year.

Person means any individual, partnership, limited liability company or corporation, association, labor union, political committee, corporation or other legal entity, including their subsidiaries.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 18:1484, 18:1483)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Political committees that know or anticipate that it will receive contributions or loans, make expenditures or loans, or make a transfer of funds to or receive a transfer of funds from another committee during a calendar year in the aggregate amount exceeding $500 must file a statement of organization annually in January of each calendar year.

An out-of-state PAC that supports candidates in states other than Louisiana, receives less than 50% of its receipts during a calendar year from persons in Louisiana, and expends less than 50% of its disbursements during a calendar year, but not more than $20,000, to support or oppose Louisiana candidates is exempted from registering and reporting in Louisiana.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 18:1491.1)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Political committees that accept or make contributions and expenditures in an aggregate amount more than $500 in a calendar year must file campaign finance reports with the Louisiana Ethics Administration Program (LEAP).
  • Candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general, state treasurer, commissioner of agriculture, commissioner of insurance, the superintendent of education, public service commissioner, justice of the supreme court, court of appeal judge, district court judge or the Louisiana legislature must file campaign finance reports with the LEAP.
  • Candidates for any other public office who makes expenditures over$2,500; or receives contributions from a single source totaling over$200 must file reports with the LEAP.
  • Persons, other than a candidate or a political committee, who makes any independent expenditures or who accepts any contributions for independent expenditures in an aggregate amount more than $500 in a calendar year must file reports with the LEAP.
  • Any person, other than a candidate or political committee, who solicits or receives any contribution or makes any expenditure in support of, or opposition to, a proposition or question submitted to the voters if the aggregate amount of contributions or expenditures equals or exceeds $1,000 must file reports with the LEAP.
  • Any candidate or political committee who solicits or receives any contribution or makes any expenditure in support of, or opposition to, a proposition or question submitted to the voters if the aggregate amount of contributions or expenditures equals or exceeds $200 must file reports with the LEAP. Candidates for major office do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported. 

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 18:1483, 18:1486, 18:1501.1)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates, political committees and other persons may need to report campaign activity at the following times:

  • Each candidate and committee must file an annual report no later than Feb. 15 of each year. An annual report is not due if another required report was filed after Dec. 10 and before Feb. 15, or if the candidate or committee has received no contributions, made no expenditures and received or made no loans during the reporting period.
  • Candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general, state treasurer, commissioner of agriculture, commissioner of insurance, the superintendent of education, public service commissioner, justice of the supreme court, court of appeal judge, district court judge and any office with an election district containing a population in excess of 250,000 must file a report 180 days before to the primary election.
  • Candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general, state treasurer, commissioner of agriculture, commissioner of insurance, the superintendent of education, public service commissioner, justice of the supreme court, court of appeal judge, district court judge and any office with an election district containing a population in excess of 250,000 must file a report 90 days prior to the primary election.
  • All candidates and committees participating in the primary election must report 30 days prior to the primary election.
  • All candidates and committees participating in the primary election must report 10 days prior to the primary election.
  • All candidates and committees participating in the primary election must report 10 days prior to the general election.
  • Candidates and committees participating in the general election must report 40 days after the general election.

Candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general, state treasurer, commissioner of agriculture, commissioner of insurance, the superintendent of education, public service commissioner, justice of the supreme court, court of appeal judge, district court judge, any office with an election district containing a population in excess of 250,000 or the Louisiana legislature who do not spend over $5,000 and do not receive contributions from one source, including the use of the candidate's personal funds, totaling over $200 may file an affidavit, but no campaign finance report.

Late special reports are required during the 20-day period immediately preceding an election and must be filed within two business days of the transaction, if a contribution or loan in excess of $1,000 for major office candidates or $500 for district office candidates, or $250 for any other office candidates is received and accepted during the 20-day period, or an expenditure over $200 is made during the 20-day period to a candidate, committee or other person required to file disclosure reports who makes endorsements. Special Reports must be filed within two business days of the transaction.

Supplemental reports are required to be filed annually by Feb. 15 if a candidate shows outstanding debts or loans or surplus funds. A supplemental report need not be filed if the candidate is not elected to any office and shows outstanding debts and loans or a surplus totaling less than $2,500.

Any person who makes any independent expenditures or who accepts any contributions for independent expenditures must file report within 48 hours after the time the contribution is received or expenditure made.

Any person who accepts any contribution or makes expenditures in support or opposition to a proposition election must file reports 30 days prior to the election, 10 days prior to the election and 40 days after the election. Special reports are required for any contribution or expenditure in excess of $200 during the 20-day period immediately preceding the proposition election.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 18:1491.6, 18:1495.4)

Filing Method

  • All candidates, slates of candidates, committees and contributing organizations must file campaign finance reports electronically.
  • Statewide offices and legislative members offices should file campaign finance reports electronically.
  • Political committees that receive contributions over $50,000 or make expenditures over $50,000 in a calendar year must file disclosure reports electronically.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 18:1485)

Penalties

  • Failure to submit reports or failure to disclose information constitutes a violation.
  • Any candidate, political committee or any other person required to file reports and who knowingly fails to file or who knowingly fails to timely file may be assessed a civil penalty. The amount of such penalty may be:
  • $100 per day, not to exceed $2,500, for each candidate for major office and any treasurer or chairman of any political committee designated as a principal campaign committee or subsidiary committee of such a candidate.
  • $60 per day, not to exceed $2,000, for any candidate for district office and any treasurer or chairman of any political committee designated as a principal campaign committee or subsidiary committee of such a candidate.
  • $40 per day, not to exceed $1,000, for any candidate for all other offices and any treasurer or chairman of any political committee designated as a principal campaign committee or subsidiary committee of such a candidate.
  • $40 per day, no to exceed $1,000, for any person or the treasurer or chairman of any political committee, not supporting or opposing a candidate, but only supporting or opposing any proposition or question submitted to the voters or any recall of a public officer.
  • $200 per day, not to exceed $3,000, for the treasurer or chairman of any political committee supporting or opposing a candidate, other than a candidate’s principal or subsidiary campaign committee.
  • A knowing or willful violation of the campaign finance laws carries a civil penalty, criminal penalty or both.
  • Any candidate, treasurer or chairman of a political committee or any other person required to file such reports who knowingly, willfully and fraudulently fails to disclose any such information or who knowingly, willfully and fraudulently fails to accurately disclose such information will, upon conviction, be sentenced to not over six months in jail or to pay a fine of not more than $500, or both.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 18:1505.4, 18:1505.5, 18:1505.6)

MAINE

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Party committees.
  • Ballot question committees.
  • Persons.

Person means an individual, committee, firm, partnership, corporation, association or organization.

(Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 21-A, § 1001)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Candidates must register no later than 10 days after becoming a candidate and before accepting contributions, making expenditures or incurring obligations.

PACs must file an initial campaign finance report within seven days of registration or within 14 days of having been required to register, whichever comes first. The registration thresholds are $2,500 for an organization or voluntary association which participates in a candidate election and $5,000 for organization, voluntary association or individual which participates in a referendum election.

The district, county and municipal party committees must submit to their state party committees the names, mailing addresses and email addresses of all their officers and of their treasurers and the name and address of the principal paid employee, if any, within 10 days after the appointment, election or hiring of these persons. Municipal committees must file copies of the same information with the municipal clerk. No later than June 15 of each year, the state party committee will submit to the Maine Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices (GEEP) a consolidated report of the names, mailing addresses and e-mail addresses of the chair and treasurer of the district, county and municipal committees

Ballot question committees must register with the commission within seven days of receiving contributions or making expenditures in the aggregate in excess of $5,000.

(21-A M.R.S. § 1013-A)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates have no reporting threshold.
  • Party committees that raise or spend $1,500 or more in a calendar year must file reports with the GEEP.
  • PACs that raise or spend $2,500 or more in a calendar year must file reports with the GEEP.
  • Any person, including any corporation or association, other than an individual, which receives contributions or makes expenditures aggregating more than $2,500 in a calendar year, for an organization or voluntary association which participates in a candidate election, must file reports with the GEEP.
  • Any person, party committee or PAC that makes independent expenditures or electioneering communications over $250 must file reports with the GEEP.
  • Any person, including any corporation or association, other than an individual, which receives contributions or makes expenditures aggregating more than $5,000 in a calendar year, for an organization or voluntary association which participates in a referendum election, must file reports with the GEEP.
  • Ballot question committees that raise or spend $5,000 or more in a calendar year must file reports with the GEEP.

Reporting Timelines

Candidates report campaign activity at the following times:

  • Semiannual reports must be filed by gubernatorial candidates that have received contributions over $1,000 or made or authorized expenditures over $1,000 and other candidates that have received contributions over $500 or made or authorized expenditures over $500.
  • 11-day pre-primary report.
  • 42-day post-primary report.
  • 42-day pre-general report.
  • 11-day pre-general report.
  • 42-day post-general report.
  • 24-hour reports apply to the 13 days prior to an election. A report must be filed if the candidate accepts a single contribution or makes a single expenditure of $1,000 or more. This includes loans, debts and debt payments.

PAC, ballot question committees and party committees file reports at the following times:

  • Quarterly reports on Jan. 15, April 10, July 15 and Oct. 5.
  • In an election year, an April quarterly, 11-day pre-primary, 42-day post-primary, October quarterly, 11-day pre-general, 42-day post-general and January quarterly reports.
  • Any single contribution of $5,000 or more or single expenditure of $1,000 or more made after the 14th day before the election and more than 24 hours before the day of the election must be filed within 24 hours.

It is the amount of the expenditure spent that determines whether an independent expenditure has to be reported. When an independent expenditure report has to be filed depends on the timing of the expenditure. A person, party committee or political action committee that makes any independent expenditure over $250 during any one candidate’s election must file a report with the MCGEEP.

  • A report must be filed by 11:59 p.m. on the 60th day before the election is held and be complete as of the 61st day before the election.
  • From the 60th day through the 14th day before an election, a report must be filed within two calendar days of the expenditure.
  • After the 14th day before an election, a report must be filed within one calendar day of the expenditure.

(Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 21-A, §§ 1059, 1017-A, 94-270-001 Me. Code R. § 1)

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports must be filed electronically, although the MCGEEP may grant exceptions to submitting electronic reports.

(Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 21-A, § 1017, 1017-A, 1059)

Penalties

  • Late report filings will be assessed late filing fees. Those fees are based on a percentage of the total contributions or expenditures for the filing period, whichever is greater, multiplied by the number of calendar days late. The first violation is 2%, the second violation is 4% and the third and subsequent violations is 6%.
  • A person who knowingly makes or accepts a contribution or expenditure in violation of the campaign finance laws is guilty of a Class E crime.
  • A person who makes a false statement in a campaign finance report is guilty of a Class E crime.
  • A candidate who fails to register the name of a candidate, treasurer or political committee on time may be assessed a fine of $100.
  • A person who fails to register a political action committee or ballot question committee is guilty of a Class E crime.
  • The intentional solicitation or giving of a campaign contribution to the governor, members of the legislature or constitutional officers when the legislature is in session is a $1,000 penalty.
  • The making of an expenditure, communication or broadcast within 10 days before the election that does not state who authorized it is a $200 fine.
  • Failure to register is a $10 penalty.
  • A violation of the requirements for publication or distribution of political communications may result in a civil penalty of no more than 100% of the amount of the expenditure in violation, except that an expenditure for yard signs lacking the required information may result in a maximum civil penalty of $200.
  • In assessing a civil penalty, the commission will consider, among other things, how widely the communication was disseminated, whether the violation was intentional, whether the violation occurred as the result of an error by a printer or other paid vendor and whether the communication conceals or misrepresents the identity of the person who financed it.
  • If the person who financed the communication or who committed the violation corrects the violation within 10 days after receiving notification of the violation from the commission by adding the missing information to the communication, the commission may decide to assess no civil penalty.

(Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 21-A, § § 1004, 1015, 1014)

MARYLAND

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means a combination of two or more individuals that has as its major purpose promoting the success or defeat of a candidate, political party, question or prospective question submitted to a vote at any election. Political committees include a political action committee, political party, legislative party caucus committee, independent expenditure committee and ballot issue committee.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. § 1-101)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates and political committees must register and file a statement of organization before the committee can receive or disburse money or any other thing of value.
  • Out-of-state political committees must register with the Maryland State Board of Elections (MSBE) within 48 hours after directly or indirectly making transfers in a cumulative amount of $6,000 or more in an election cycle to one or more campaign finance entities.
  • Independent expenditure committees must file a registration form with the Maryland State Board of Elections within 48 hours after a person makes aggregate independent expenditures of $5,000 or more in an election cycle.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. §§ 13-207, 13-301)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees have no reporting threshold.
  • A political committee may file an Affidavit of Limited Contributions and Expenditures if the committee did not receive or spend more than $1,000 in the aggregate, during the reporting period. The affidavit would be in lieu of a report.
  • A person or independent expenditures committee must report an independent expenditure when it makes aggregate expenditures of $5,000 or more in an election cycle for campaign material that is a public communication with the MSBE.
  • A person who makes aggregate disbursements of $5,000 or more in an election cycle for electioneering communications must register with the MSBE within 48 hours.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. §§ 13-207, 13-301, 13-307)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political committees, except for a ballot issue committee, submit an annual campaign finance report in January. In addition, the committees may need to file pre-primary reports on the fifth Tuesday and second Friday before a primary election; pre-general reports on the last Tuesday in August and the second Friday before a general election; and a post-general report due on the second Tuesday after the general election.

  • Annual Report due in January.
  • Spring Report due in April (only required for new committees that were not required to file the annual report).
  • Pre-Primary Report one due in June.
  • Pre-Primary Report two due in July.
  • Pre-General Report one due in August.
  • Pre-General Report two due in October.
  • Post-General Report due in November.

In addition to the reports mentioned above, a person making independent expenditures may need to file other reports. A person must file an independent expenditure report with the MSBE within 48 hours after a day on which a person makes aggregate independent expenditures of $10,000 or more in an election cycle.

A ballot issue committee must file campaign finance reports as follows:

  • On the third Wednesday in January, if needed. (If the ballot issue committee is established a year or more before the election, it is required to file an annual report each year until the year of the election.)
  • On or before the last Tuesday in August immediately preceding a general election.
  • On or before the fourth Friday immediately preceding a general election.
  • On or before the second Friday immediately preceding a general election.
  • On or before the second Tuesday after a general election.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. §§ 13-306, 13-309)

Filing Method

All political committees must file their campaign finance reports electronically. The MSBE may grant a waiver if a political committee maintains a cash balance of less than $3,000 and/or has less than 20 transactions during a reporting period.

Penalties

  • The MSBE will assess late fees for each day or part of a day that a campaign finance report, an affidavit, or an amended campaign finance report is overdue. The penalty is $20 for each of the first seven days; $35 for each of the following seven days; and $50 for each day thereafter. The maximum fee is $1,000.
  • Failure to file a campaign finance report may result in the MSBE referring the matter for prosecution.
  • The acceptance of a contribution during the legislative session is a civil penalty equal to the sum of $1,000 plus the amount of the contribution.
  • General violations of the campaign finance laws are a misdemeanor and may result in a fine of up to $25,000, up to one year imprisonment, or both.
  • A person who unknowingly violates a provision of the campaign finance laws will pay a civil penalty up to $5,000.
  • The MSBE may assess a civil penalty for failure to file properly an independent expenditure report or an amended independent expenditure report in an amount not exceeding the greater of:
  • $1,000 for each day or part of a day that an independent expenditure report or amended independent expenditure report is overdue. or
  • 10% of the amount of the donations or independent expenditures that were not reported in a timely manner.
  • The failure to file properly an independent expenditure report or an amended independent expenditure report occurs more than 28 days before the day of a primary or general election, the MSBE may assess a civil penalty in an amount not exceeding the greater of:
  • $100 for each day or part of a day that an independent expenditure report or amended independent expenditure report is overdue. or
  • 10% of the amount of the donations or disbursements for independent expenditures that were not reported in a timely manner.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. §§ 13-331, 13-335 13-603)

MASSACHUSETTS

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any committee, association, organization or other group of persons, including a national, regional, state, county or municipal committee, which receives contributions or makes expenditures for the purpose of influencing the nomination or election of a candidate, or candidates, or of presidential and vice presidential electors, or for the purpose of opposing or promoting a charter change, referendum question, constitutional amendment or other question submitted to the voters. Political committees include a political action committee, political party committee and ballot question committee.

Person means any individual, group, association, corporation, labor union and any other entity that is not a political committee.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, § 1)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Candidates and political committees may not accept any contributions nor incur any expenses until it has registered and filed statement of organizations with the Massachusetts Office of Campaign and Political Finance (MOCPF).

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, § 5)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Any person not registered as political committees that makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount exceeding $250 during any calendar year must file reports with the MOCPF.
  • Any person not registered as political committees that make electioneering communications must file a report with the MOCPF, when electioneering communications exceed $250 in the aggregate during any calendar year.

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political committees may need to report campaign activity at the following times:

  • In odd-numbered years, legislative candidates file quarterly reports on Jan. 20, April 20, July 20 and Oct. 20.
  • In even numbered years, legislative candidates file quarterly reports on Jan. 20, April 20, July 20 and Oct. 20 and eight days before the primary election and eight days before the general election.
  • Monthly reports of all expenditure activity are due no later than the fifth day of the following month.
  • Year-end reports must be filed by Jan. 20 each year. The year-end report summarizes all deposit and expenditure activity and provides disclosure of all in-kind contributions received or liabilities incurred during the year.

Every individual, group, association, corporation, labor union, political committee or other entity that makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount exceeding $250 during any calendar year for the express purpose of promoting the election or defeat of a candidate must file with the director:

  • Within seven business days after the goods or services for which the independent expenditure was made are utilized to advocate for the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate.
  • Within 24 hours after the goods or services for which the independent expenditure was made are utilized after the 10th day, but 24 hours before an election.

A ballot measure committee will file the following reports:

  • An initial report must be filed within three days of a committee organizing. Any receipts or expenditures that occurred in the PAC’s first three days must be disclosed.
  • Semi-monthly reports must be submitted by the fifth day and the 20th day of the month.
  • Committees that receive a contribution of $500 or more after the 18th day, but more than 72 hours, before the date of an election must file a late contribution report within 72 hours of receipt.
  • Committees must file a summary year-end report which is due on Jan. 20 of the following year.

Electioneering reports must be filed within seven days after an electioneering communication is made before the seventh day preceding any election. During the final seven days before an election, electioneering reports must be filed within 48 hours for electioneering communications that exceeds $1,000.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, §§ 18A, 18F)

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports are filed electronically.

Penalties

  • Civil penalties for any report, statement or affidavit required to be filed and is filed later than the prescribed date carries a $25 fine per day with a maximum penalty no greater than $5,000 for any one report, statement or affidavit.
  • Failure to keep campaign finance records as prescribed by law carries a one year in prison, a fine of up to $1,000, or both.
  • Failure to disclose a contributor’s identity may be punished by a fine up to $1,000, and imprisonment up to one year.
  • Any candidate or political committee who violates the receiving or expending rules may be punished by imprisonment for not more than six months or by a fine of not more than $500.
  • Any person or corporation, association, organization or other group of persons who violate the reporting rules for ballot question contributions and expenditures will be punished by a fine of not more than $50,000.
  • Any person who violates or in any way knowingly aids or abets the violation of the reporting rules for ballot question contributions and expenditures will be punished by a fine of not more than $10,000 or by imprisonment for not more than one year or both.
  • Any person who violates the disclaimer rules will be punished by imprisonment in the house of correction for not more than one year or by a fine of not more than $10,000, or both.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, §§ 2, 3, 7, 10, 18, 22)

MICHIGAN

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Political committees.
  • Political party committees.
  • Independent expenditure committees.
  • Ballot question committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means a committee that was formed to support one or more candidates and may also support or oppose ballot questions. A political committee includes: a political action committee (PAC), leadership PAC, legislative PAC, leadership fund, victory fund, majority fund, minority fund and independent committee.

Person means a business, individual, proprietorship, limited liability company, firm, partnership, joint venture, syndicate, business trust, labor organization, company, corporation, association, committee or any other organization or group of persons acting jointly.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 169.211)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must register and form a candidate committee and as soon as a person becomes a candidate. The candidate has up to 10 calendar days to form a committee.
  • Political committees receiving contributions and making expenditures more than $500 must register within 10 days.
  • Political party committees receiving contributions and making expenditures more than $500 must register within 10 calendar days.
  • Independent expenditure committee spending $500 or more in a calendar year on independent expenditures must register within 10 calendar days.
  • Ballot question committee receiving contributions and making expenditures more than $500 in support of, or in opposition to, the qualification, passage or defeat of a ballot question must register within 10 calendar days.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. §§ 169.221, 169.224)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates that expect to receive or spend more than $1,000 for an election must file disclosure reports with the secretary of state. A candidate committee may obtain a reporting waiver exemption from filing detailed campaign statements if they don’t expect to receive or spend more than $1,000 for an election.
  • Political committees, political party committees and ballot question committees that expects to receive $500 or more of contributions or spends $500 or more for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of the voters in a calendar year must file disclosure reports with the secretary of state.
  • Independent expenditure political committees that spend $500 or more in a calendar year on independent expenditures must file reports with the secretary of state.
  • Any person, other than a committee, that makes an independent expenditure in an amount of $100.01 or more in a calendar year must file a report with the secretary of state.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 169.203)

Reporting Timelines

  • Candidates in an election year may need to report campaign activity at the following times:
  • A pre-election campaign statement must be filed not later than the 11th day before an election.
  • A post-election campaign statement must be filed not later than the 30th day following the election.
  • A July quarterly must be filed each year in which the office is not up for election.
  • An October quarterly must be filed each year in which the office is not up for election.
  • An annual campaign statement must be filed in January for the previous year’s activities.
  • Candidates in a non-election year need to report campaign activity by July 25 and Oct. 25.
  • Candidates who receive any single or cumulative contribution of $500 or more received from the same person between the day following the close of the last report and the third day before an election in which the candidate participates must file late contribution report within 48 hours.
  • Political committees, including state level PACs, including super PACS and caucus committees registered with the Michigan Department of State’s Bureau of Elections are required to file reports in January, April, July and October.
  • Local level PACs registered with a county clerk’s office are required to file annual reports and any pre-election and post-election statements for elections where the committees spend money to influence voters.
  • State level political party committees are required to file annual reports and any pre-election and post-election statements for elections where the committees spend money to influence voters.
  • Political committees and political party committees must file a late contribution report if:
  • The committee receives a single or cumulative contribution of $2,500 or more received from the same person between the day following the close of the last report and the third day before the date of any election; and
  • The committee has made an expenditure to support or oppose a candidate or ballot question on the ballot during the same late contribution report period described above.
  • Caucus committees and political party committees are required to file daily reports from the 14th day preceding an election to the day after the election, if the committee receives a contribution or makes an expenditure of more than $1,000 per day.
  • Political committees file independent expenditures with the reports mentioned above. In addition, if an independent expenditure is made within 45 days of a special election by a political committee, a report of the expenditure must be filed within 48 hours.
  • Any person, other than a committee, that makes an independent expenditure, advocating the election or defeat of a candidate or the qualification, passage or defeat of a ballot question, in an amount of $100.01 or more in a calendar year must file a report of the independent expenditure, within 10 days after making that independent expenditure.
  • Ballot question committees must file:
  • A pre-election campaign report, the closing date of which is the 16th day before the election, must not be filed later than the 11th day before the election.
  • A postelection campaign report, the closing date of which is the 20th day following the election, must not be filed later than the 30th day following an election.
  • April 25 with a closing date of April 20 of that year.
  • July 25 with a closing date of July 20 of that year.
  • In every odd numbered year, a report must be filed no later than October 25 with a closing date of Oct. 20 of that year.
  • A ballot question committee supporting or opposing a statewide ballot question must file a report, of which the closing date is the 28th day after the filing of the petition form, not later than 35 days after the petition form is filed.
  • A ballot question committee must file a late contribution if the committee receives a single or cumulative contribution of $2,500 or more from the same person between the day following the close of the last report and the third day before the date of any election; and the committee has made an expenditure to support or oppose a candidate or ballot question on the ballot during the same late contribution report period described above.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. §§ 169.233, 169.234)

Filing Method

  • Campaign disclosure reports may be filed electronically or on paper.
  • Committees are required to file electronically if the committee received or expended $5,000 or more in the preceding calendar year or expects to receive or expend $5,000 or more in the current calendar year.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 169.218)

Penalties

  • Late filing fees are assessed for filings that are required to be filed but are not filed on time.
  • For committees that have raised $10,000 or less during the previous two years, the fine is $25 per day, not to exceed $500.
  • For committees that have raised more than $10,000 during the previous two years, the fine is $25 per day, an additional $25 per day after the first three days, an additional $50 per day after the first 10 days, not to exceed $1,000.
  • A person who fails to file two statements and both of the statements remain unfiled for more than 30 days is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000 or imprisonment for not more than 90 days, or both.
  • A person that violates the requirements and reporting of contributions and expenditures may be subject to a civil fine of not more than $1,000.
  • A person who fails to file a statement of organization will pay a late filing fee of $10 for each business day the statement remains not filed. The late filing fee will not exceed $300. A person who fails to file for more than 30 days after a statement of organization is required to be filed is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000.
  • An individual, group or organization the fails to file or late files an Independent Expenditure Report, a late filing fee will be assessed as follows:
  • If the Independent Expenditure is less than $10,000, the fee accrues at $25 per business day to a maximum of $1,000.
  • If the Independent Expenditure is $10,000 or more, the fee accrues at $50 per business day to a maximum of $5,000.
  • A person that fails to file a required report for more than 30 calendar days is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 90 days or a fine of not more than $1,000 or both.
  • A person who knowingly violates the disclaimer requirements is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000, or imprisonment for not more than 93 days, or both.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. §§ 169.221, 169.233, 169.234, 169.235)

MINNESOTA

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Political party unit.

Political committee means an association whose major purpose is to influence the nomination or election of one or more candidates or to promote or defeat a ballot question, other than a principal campaign committee or a political party unit. Political committee includes, but is not limited to political action committees, independent expenditure political committee, ballot question political committees.

Political party unit means the state committee of a political party or the party organization in a body of the legislature, a congressional district, a county, a legislative district, a city, a township or a precinct. A state political party is made up of all of its individual party units.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.01)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must register the candidate’s campaign committee with the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board (Board) within 14 days after receiving more than $750 from supporters or spending more than $750 to help the candidate get nominated or elected.
  • Political committees, political funds, principal campaign committees or party units must register and the registration statement must be filed by the earliest of the following dates: (1) no later than 14 days after the committee, fund or party unit has made a contribution, received contributions, or made expenditures over$750; or (2) no later than the next report of receipts and expenditures filing date applicable to the committee, fund or party unit if the committee, fund or party unit reached the threshold.
  • Independent expenditure or ballot question political committees or funds must register and the registration statement must be filed by the earliest of the following dates no later than 14 calendar days after the committee has:
  • Received aggregate contributions for independent expenditures of more than $1,500 in a calendar year.
  • Received aggregate contributions for expenditures to promote or defeat a ballot question of more than $5,000 in a calendar year.
  • Made aggregate independent expenditures of more than $1,500 in a calendar year. or
  • Made aggregate expenditures to promote or defeat a ballot question of more than $5,000 in a calendar year.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.14)

Reporting Thresholds

Candidates, political committees and political party units must file reports after receiving contributions or making expenditures over $750.

Any independent expenditure committee or political fund that has received contributions or made independent expenditures aggregating more than $1,500 in a calendar year must file reports with the Board.

Any ballot question political committee that has received or made expenditures to promote or defeat a ballot question aggregating more than $5,000 in a calendar year must file reports with the Board.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.20)

Reporting Timelines

In a non-election year, candidates must file a campaign report annually.

In an election year, candidates must file:

  • Pre-primary election report due 15 days before the primary.
  • Pre-general election report due 10 days before the general election.
  • Post-general election report due 30 days after a general or special election.
  • Year-end report due on Jan. 31.
  • During election years, there is a gap between the filing of the pre-election reports and the date of the election. If a candidate receives any contributions or allocations of money over $500 during this time frame, the candidate must report this late contribution within 24 hours to the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board.

In each general election year, a political committee, a political fund, a state party committee and a party unit must file:

  • A first-quarter report due on April 14.
  • A second-quarter report due on June 14.
  • A pre-primary election report due 15 days before a primary election.
  • A pre-general election report due 42 days before the general election.
  • A pre-general election report due 10 days before a general election.
  • Post-general election report due 30 days after a general or special election.
  • During election years, there is a gap between the filing of the pre-election reports and the date of the election. If a political committee receives any contributions or allocations of money, more than $1,000, during this time frame, the committee must report this late contribution within 24 hours to the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board.

In odd-numbered election year, independent expenditure and ballot question committees must file a year-end report is due on Jan. 31 of the following year.

In even-numbered election year, the following reports will be filed:

  • A first-quarter report due on April 14.
  • A second-quarter report due on June 14.
  • Pre-primary election report due 15 days before the primary.
  • A pre-general election report due 42 days before the general election.
  • A pre-general election report due 10 days before a general election.
  • Year-end report due on Jan. 31 of the following year.
  • During election years, there is a gap between the filing of the pre-election reports and the date of the election. If a political committee receives any contributions or allocations of money, more than $1,000, during this time frame, the committee must report this late contribution within 24 hours to the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.20)

Filing Method

  • Campaign disclosure reports must be filed electronically. There are exceptions for good cause and if granted, a person may file by paper. 
  • Late contribution reports may be filed either electronically or by fax.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.025)

Penalties

  • If an individual fails to file a report, the board may impose a late filing fee of $25 per day, not to exceed $1,000, commencing the day after the report was due.
  • If an individual fails to file a report that is due before a primary or general election, the board may impose a late filing fee of $50 per day, not to exceed $1,000, commencing on the day after the date the statement was due. The board must send notice by certified mail to an individual who fails to file a report within ten business days after the report was due that the individual may be subject to a civil penalty for failure to file the report. An individual who fails to file the report within seven days after the certified mail notice was sent by the board is subject to a civil penalty imposed by the board of up to $1,000.
  • Any person who knowingly files a false report may be subject to a civil penalty of up to $3,000 and is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
  • A violation of the campaign financial reports chapter for which no other penalty is provided is a misdemeanor.
  • Any person who participates in the preparation or dissemination of campaign material that does not prominently include the name and address of the person or committee causing the material to be prepared or disseminated is guilty of a misdemeanor.
  • An independent expenditure political committee or independent expenditure political fund is subject to a civil penalty of up to four times the amount of the contribution or approved expenditure.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.20, Minn. Stat. § 10A.025, Minn. Stat. § 10A.121, Minn. Stat. § 211B.04)

MISSISSIPPI

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any committee, party, club, association, political action committee, campaign committee or other groups of persons or affiliated organizations that receives contributions aggregating over$200 during a calendar year or that makes expenditures aggregating in excess $200 during a calendar year for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of voters for or against the nomination for election, or election, of one or more candidates, or balloted measures.

Person means any individual, family, firm, corporation, partnership, association or other legal entity.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-801)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Political committees and candidates must file a statement of organization which must be received by the Secretary of State no later than 48 hours after the receipt of contributions or having made expenditures aggregating over $200.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-803)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees must file reports with the secretary of state after receiving contribution or making expenditures over $200.
  • Every person who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount or value over $200 during a calendar year must file reports with the secretary of state.
  • Every person who makes expenditures for ballot measure in an aggregate amount or value over $200 during a calendar year must file reports with the secretary of state.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-809)

Reporting Timelines

  • Candidates need to file annual reports and periodic reports on May 10, June 10, July 10, Oct. 10 and Jan. 10. In addition, candidates who are opposed need to file pre-primary, pre-runoff and pre-election reports.
  • Political committees, who did not support or oppose a candidate or ballot measure, needs to file an annual report.
  • Political committees, who supports or opposes a candidate or ballot measure, needs to file pre-election reports and periodic reports on May 10, June 10, July 10, Oct. 10 and Jan. 10.
  • Independent expenditures committees follow the reporting schedules above.
  • A person who expends over $200 for independent expenditures is required to file monthly campaign finance reports.
  • A person who expends over $200 for the purpose of influencing the passage or defeat of a constitutional initiative measure is required to file monthly campaign finance reports.
  • A political committee which receives contributions or makes expenditures over $200 for the purpose of influencing the passage or defeat of a constitutional initiative measure is required to file monthly campaign finance reports with the secretary of state.

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports may be filed electronically or by paper.

(Miss. Code §23-15-807)

Penalties

  • The Mississippi Ethics Commission may impose administrative penalties against any political committee that fails to comply with the registration requirements in an amount not to exceed $5,000 per violation.
  • Any candidate or other person who willfully violates the disclosure provisions will be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction may be punished by a fine not to exceed $3,000 or imprisoned for not longer than six months or by both fine and imprisonment.
  • Any candidate or political committee who fails to file a campaign finance disclosure report or fails to substantially comply with the requirements may be assessed a civil penalty. Within five calendar days after any deadline for filing a report, the secretary of state will provide each candidate or political committee a notice of the failure by first-class mail. Beginning with the 10th calendar day after which any report is due, the Commission will assess the delinquent candidate and political committee a civil penalty of $50 for each day or part of any day until a valid report is delivered to the secretary of state.
  • If any candidate or political committee is assessed a civil penalty, the candidate or political committee must pay the fine within 90 days. If, after 120 days the assessed fine has not been received, the Commission will notify the attorney general and the attorney general may file a suit to compel payment of the civil penalty.
  • Any political committee or person who violates the reporting requirements for initiative measures is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine not to exceed $1,000, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-803, 23-17-61)

Missouri

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Continuing committees.
  • Persons.

Committee means a person or any combination of persons, who accepts contributions or makes expenditures for the primary or incidental purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of voters for or against the nomination or election to public office of one or more candidates or the qualification, passage or defeat of any ballot measure or for the purpose of paying a previously incurred campaign debt or obligation of a candidate or the debts or obligations of a committee or for the purpose of contributing funds to another committee.

Continuing committee is a committee of continuing existence which is not formed, controlled or directed by a candidate and is a committee other than a candidate committee or campaign committee, whose primary or incidental purpose is to receive contributions or make expenditures to influence or attempt to influence the action of voters whether or not a particular candidate or candidates or a particular ballot measure or measures to be supported or opposed has been determined at the time the committee is required to file any statement or report pursuant to the provisions of this chapter. Continuing committee includes, but is not limited to, any committee organized or sponsored by a business entity, a labor organization, a professional association, a trade or business association, a club or other organization and whose primary purpose is to solicit, accept and use contributions from the members, employees or stockholders of such entity and any individual or group of individuals who accept and use contributions to influence or attempt to influence the action of voters. Includes political action committees PACs and political party committees.

Person is an individual, group of individuals, corporation, partnership, committee, proprietorship, joint venture, any department, agency, board, institution or other entity of the state or any of its political subdivisions, union, labor organization, trade or professional or business association, association, political party or any executive committee thereof, or any other club or organization however constituted or any officer or employee of such entity acting in the person’s official capacity.

(Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.011)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidate committees receiving more than $325 from a single contributor or making expenditures totaling over $500 or received over $500 in contributions from others in a calendar year must submit a statement of committee organization with the Missouri Ethics Commission within 20 days.
  • Continuing committees receiving contributions totaling more than $250 from a single contributor or accepting contributions or making expenditures of $500 or more in a calendar year must submit a statement of committee organization with the Missouri Ethics Commission within 20 days.

(Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.011)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidate committees receiving more than $325 from a single contributor or making expenditures totaling over $500 or received over $500 in contributions from others in a calendar year must file reports with the Missouri Ethics Commission (MEC).
  • Continuing committees receiving contributions totaling more than $250 from a single contributor or accepts contributions or make expenditures of $500 or more in a calendar year must file reports with the MEC.

Reporting Timelines

The disclosure reports for candidate and continuing committees must be filed at the following times and for the following periods:

  • The eighth day before an election if the committee has made any contribution or expenditure either in support or opposition to any candidate or ballot measure.
  • The 30th day after an election if the committee has made any contribution or expenditure either in support of or opposition to any candidate or ballot measure.
  • Quarterly on Jan. 15, April 15, July 15 and Oct. 15.
  • Any contributions by any single contributor over $5,000 must be electronically reported within 48 hours of receipt.
  • Any late contribution or loan of more than $250 by a candidate committee supporting a candidate for statewide office or by any other committee received after the closing date of the last disclosure report but received prior to the election itself must be reported within 24 hours after receipt.
  • Any late expenditures of more than $250 by a continuing committee, whether in a single expenditure or in combined expenditures, after the 12th day before an election must be reported within 24 hours.

Any person who is not a defined committee who makes an expenditure or expenditures aggregating $500 or more in support of, or opposition to, one or more candidates or in support of, or in opposition to, the qualification or passage of one or more ballot measures must file a report no later than 14 days after the date of making an expenditure which by itself or when added to all other such expenditures during the same campaign equals $500 or more. If, after filing such report, additional expenditures are made, a further report should be filed no later than 14 after the date of making the additional expenditures; except that, if the expenditure is made within 14 days prior to an election, the report should be filed no later than 48 hours after the date of such expenditure.

Any person that receives a single contribution, including a loan, from a contributor in an amount over $5,000 must electronically report the contribution to the MEC within 48 hours of its receipt.

(Mo. Rev. Stat. §§ 130.046, 130.047, 130.044, 130.050)

Filing Method

  • Campaign disclosure reports may be filed electronically or on paper.
  • Candidates for the office of state representative, state senator and for statewide elected office must file reports electronically. 
  • 48 hour reports of contributions over $5,000 must be filed electronically.

(Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.044, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.046)

Penalties

  • Any person who commits a contribution or expenditure violation will be assessed a civil penalty and be held liable to the state. The civil penalty will be in an amount equal the contribution or expenditure in violation.
  • Any person who fails to file a report will be assessed a $10 per day late fee. If late filing extends beyond 30 days, the amount of the late filing fee will increase to $100 per day. The total amount of late fees assessed per report will not exceed $3,000. In addition, the Missouri Ethics Commission could take an enforcement action and conducting an investigation.
  • Any person who knowingly accepts or makes a contribution or makes an expenditure in violation or who knowingly conceals a contribution or expenditure by filing a false or incomplete report or by not filing a required report, will be held liable for civil penalties in an amount equal to any such contribution or expenditure.
  • Any purposeful violation of the campaign finance chapter is a Class A misdemeanor.

(Mo. Rev. Stat. § 105.963, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.072, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 130.081)

MONTANA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate
  • Political committees

Political committee means a combination of two or more individuals or a person other than an individual who receives a contribution or makes an expenditure:

  • To support or oppose a candidate or a committee organized to support or oppose a candidate or a petition for nomination.
  • To support or oppose a ballot issue or a committee organized to support or oppose a ballot issue.; or
  • To prepare or disseminate an election communication, an electioneering communication or an independent expenditure.

Political committees include ballot issue committees, incidental committees, independent committees and political party committees.

  • Incidental committee means a political committee that is not specifically organized or operating for the primary purpose of supporting or opposing candidates or ballot issues but that may incidentally become a political committee by receiving a contribution or making an expenditure.
  • Independent committee means a political committee organized for the primary purpose of receiving contributions and making expenditures that is not controlled either directly or indirectly by a candidate and that does not coordinate with a candidate in conjunction with the making of expenditures.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-1-101)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must register within five business days of becoming a candidate.
  • Political committees register within five days after it makes an expenditure or authorizes another person to make an expenditure on its behalf, whichever occurs first.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-37-201, ARM 44.11.220 )

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates for statewide or state district seats do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Local candidates accepting contributions or making expenditures of $500 or more must report reports with the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices (MOPP).
  • Political committees making expenditures in a total amount over $250 must file reports with the MOPP.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-37-226, ARM 44.11.304)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates must file the following:

  • Quarterly reports are due on the fifth day following a calendar quarter.
  • In election years in which a candidate participates, report must be filed by the 20th day of March, April, May, June, August, September, October and November.
  • Late expenditure reports must be reported within two business days of making an expenditure of $250 or more if the candidate is a candidate for statewide office or $125 or more for any other candidate if made between the 15th day of the month preceding an election in which the candidate participates and the day before the election.
  • Semi-annual reports are due on the 10th day of March and September, starting in the year following an election in which the candidate participates until the candidate files a closing report.

Political committees must file the following:

  • Quarterly reports are due on the fifth day following a calendar quarter, beginning with the calendar quarter in which the political committee or the joint fundraising committee receives a contribution or makes an expenditure after an individual becomes a candidate or an issue becomes a ballot issue.
  • In election years, reports are due on the 30th day of March, April, May, June, August, September, October and November in the year of an election in which the political committee or the joint fundraising committee participates.
  • Late contribution reports must be reported within two business days of receiving a contribution of $500 or more if received between the 25th day of the month before an election in which the political committee or the joint fundraising committee participates and the day before the election.
  • An expenditure of $500 or more that is made between the 25th day of the month before an election and the day before the election must file a late expenditure report within two business days of making the expenditure.

Candidates and political committees that participate in a special election must file reports on the 60th, 35th and 12th days preceding the date of the special election and 20 days after the special election.

Nonresident and federally-filling committees must file periodic reports only for periods in which a federally-filing committee or nonresident committee receives contributions from Montana sources or makes expenditures elections in Montana.

(ARM 44.11.305)

Filing Method

Candidates and political committees must file electronically but a waiver may be requested. If waiver is granted, then reports may be filed by paper.

(MCA §13-37-226, ARM 44.11.402, ARM 44.11.302)

Penalties

  • A person who intentionally or negligently violates any of the reporting provisions is liable in a civil action brought by MOPP or a county attorney for an amount up to $500 or three times the amount of the unlawful contributions or expenditures, whichever is greater.
  • A person who makes or receives a contribution or expenditure in violation is liable in a civil action brought by MOPP or a county attorney for an amount up to $500 or three times the amount of the unlawful contribution or expenditure, whichever is greater.
  • A person who violates the provisions is liable in a civil action brought by MOPP or a county attorney pursuant to the provisions for an amount up to $500 or three times the amount of the unlawful disbursement, contribution, expenditure or promise, whichever is greater.
  • A person who knowingly violates a provision of the election laws of this state for which no other penalty is specified is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-35-103, 13-35-106, 13-37-128, ARM 44.11.106)

NEBRASKA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions
  • Who needs to register with the state
  • Reporting thresholds
  • Reporting timelines
  • Filing methods
  • Penalties

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Independent committees.
  • Committees.
  • Persons.

Committee means:

  • Any combination of two or more individuals which receives contributions or makes expenditures of more than $5,000 in a calendar year for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of the voters for or against the nomination or election of one or more candidates or the qualification, passage or defeat of one or more ballot questions. or
  • A person whose primary purpose is to receive contributions or make expenditures and who receives or makes contributions or expenditures of more than $5,000 in a calendar year for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of the voters for or against the nomination or election of one or more candidates or the qualification, passage or defeat of one or more ballot questions, except that an individual, other than a candidate, shall not constitute a committee.

Independent committee means a committee other than a candidate, ballot question or political party committee. This includes political action committees.

Person means a business, individual, proprietorship, firm, partnership, limited liability company, joint venture, syndicate, business trust, labor organization, company, corporation, association, committee or other organization or group of persons acting jointly.

(Neb. Rev. Stat. Ann § 49-1413, 49-1427, 49-1438)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates who raise, expend or receive more than $5,000 in a calendar year for the purpose of advancing his or her candidacy must file a statement of organization with the Nebraska Accountability and Disclosure Commission (NADC).
  • Committees and independent committees receiving contributions or making expenditures of more than $5,000 in a calendar year for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence the action of the voters for or against the nomination or election of one or more candidates or the qualification, passage or defeat of one or more ballot questions must file a statement of organization within 10 days.

(Neb. Rev. Stat. Ann §§ 49-1445,  49-1413)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, committees and independent committees receiving contributions or making expenditures of more than $5,000 in a calendar year must file reports with NADC.
  • Major out-of-state contributors that make contributions or expenditures totaling more than $10,000 in any calendar year in connection with one or more elections must report expenditures with NADC.
  • Any person, other than a committee, who makes an independent expenditure over $250 advocating the election of a candidate or the defeat of a candidate’s opponents or the qualification, passage or defeat of a ballot question, must file a report within 10 days with the NADC.

(Neb. Rev. Stat. Ann §§ 49-1459, 49-1433.01)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates, committees and independent expenditure committees must file reports:

  • 30 days before, 10 days before and 40 days after each primary election.
  • 30 days before, 10 days before and 70 days after each general election.
  • Annual report is due on Jan. 31
  • Any contribution (including an in-kind contribution, a loan or a pledge) of $1,000 or more received from a single source (including the candidate) during the 14-day period immediately preceding an election must be filed within two days after the contribution is received by the candidate or committee.
  • Any committee that makes expenditures of more than $1,000 in the calendar year or made within 15 days before an election must report the expenditure within two days after the date of the expenditure.

Any person, other than a committee, who makes an independent expenditure in an amount of more than $250, must file a report of the independent expenditure within 10 days with the NADC.

(Neb. Rev. Stat. § 49-1455)

Filing Method

  • Campaign disclosure reports must be filed electronically.
  • The filing of a late independent expenditure report may be by any written means of communication approved by NADC.

(Neb. Rev. Stat. § 49-14,141)

Penalties

  • The late filing of a statement of organizations carries a fine of $25 per day penalty and the maximum fine will not exceed $750.
  • The late filing of a late contribution report carries a fine of $100 per day penalty and the maximum fine will not exceed $3,000 or 10% of the late contribution, whichever is greater.
  • The late filing of a late expenditure report carries a fine of $100 per day penalty and the maximum fine will not exceed $3,000 or 10% of the late expenditure, whichever is greater.
  • Failure to file an independent expenditure report carries a late filing fee of $25, not to exceed $750.
  • Failure to file a late independent expenditure report carries a late filing fee of $100 for each of the first 10 days. After the 10th day, an additional late filing fee of one % of the amount of the late independent expenditure, which was required to be reported, not to exceed 10% of the amount of the late independent expenditure which was required to be reported.
  • Any person who knowingly violates the disclaimer provisions will be guilty of a Class IV misdemeanor.

(Neb. Rev. Stat. Ann §§ 49-1463, 49-1449, 49-1467, 49-1458, 49-1474.01, 49-1478.01, 14-1478)

NEVADA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Committees for political action (PAC).
  • Political party.
  • Persons.

Committee for political action means:

  • Any group or entities that solicits or receives contributions from any other person, group or entity and makes or intends to make contributions to candidates or other persons; or makes or intends to make expenditures, designed to affect the outcome of any primary election, general election, special election or question on the ballot.
  • Any business or social organization, corporation, partnership, association, trust, unincorporated organization or labor union which has as its primary purpose affecting the outcome of any primary election, general election, special election or any question on the ballot and for that purpose receives contributions over $1,500 in a calendar year or makes expenditures over $1,500 in a calendar year; or which does not have as its primary purpose affecting the outcome of any primary election, general election, special election or any question on the ballot, but for the purpose of affecting the outcome of any specific election or question on the ballot receives contributions over $5,000 in a calendar year or makes independent expenditures over $5,000 in a calendar year.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates file a declaration of candidacy with the secretary of state before engaging in any activity in the state.
  • PACs and political parties must register with the secretary of state before engaging in any activity in the state.
  • Nonprofit corporation must register before engaging in any of the following activities:
  • Soliciting or receiving contributions from any other person, group or entity.
  • Making contributions to candidates or other persons. or
  • Making expenditures.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.0055, Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.230, Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.225)

Reporting Thresholds

  • After a candidate who files a declaration of candidacy, or whose name appears on an official ballot, or who has received contribution over $100, must file contribution and expenditure reports.
  • A primary prupose PAC or political party that receives contributions or makes expenditures over $1,500 in a calendar year must file contribution and expenditure reports.
  • A non-primary purpose PAC that receives contributions or makes expenditures over $5,000 in a calendar year must file contribution and expenditure reports.
  • A nonprofit corporation must file reports once it solicits or receives contributions, makes contributions to a candidate or other persons or makes expenditures.
  • Every person who makes an independent expenditure over $1,000 must file reports.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.120, Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.200, Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.140)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates, PACs and party committees must file annual reports in January and quarterly campaign contributions and expenses reports in April, July, October and January.

Every person, PAC, political party and committee sponsored by a political party that makes an independent expenditure over $1,000 for or against a candidate for office or a group of such candidates must file annual reports in January and quarterly campaign contributions and expenses reports in April, July, October and January.

Every person, PAC and political party which makes an independent expenditure for or against a candidate for office at a special election. For special elections, reporting timelines vary.

Filing Method

All campaign contributions and expense reports must be filed electronically. A waiver may be granted to file a paper report only if:

  • The candidate did not receive or expend money over $10,000 after becoming a candidate.
  • The candidate files an affidavit with the secretary of state which states the candidate does not own or have the ability to access the technology necessary to file the report electronically.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 294A.120, 194A.3733)

Penalties

  • Any PAC that fails to register with the secretary of state may be subject to a civil penalty of up to $5,000 for each activity in which the PAC engages.
  • Late filing penalty fees:
  • If the report is filed one to seven days late, $25 for each day the report is late.
  • If the report is filed eight to 15 days late, $50 for each day the report is late.
  • If the report is filed more than 15 days late, $100 for each day the report is late, up to a maximum of $10,000 for each violation.
  • Any person who believes that a campaign finance provision has been violated may notify the secretary of state.
  • Any person who violates the registration and reporting requirements, unless otherwise provided, is subject to a civil penalty of not more than $10,000 for each violation and payment of court costs and attorney’s fees.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 294A.230, 294A.420)

NEW HAMPSHIRE

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Political advocacy organizations.

Political committee means:

  • Any organization of two or more persons that promotes the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures, including the political committee of a political party.
  • Any segregated fund established by any organization the purpose of which is to promote the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures.
  • Any organization that has as its major purpose to promote the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures and whose receipts or expenditures total $2,500 or more in a calendar year for that purpose.
  • Any organization that does not have as its major purpose to promote the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures but that makes expenditures that total $5,000 or more in a calendar year. or
  • Any segregated fund that is voluntarily registered with the secretary of state for the purpose of reporting its receipts and expenditures under this chapter or any organization that voluntarily registers with the secretary of state.

Political advocacy organization means any entity that spends $5,000 or more in a calendar year to pay for a communication that is functionally equivalent to express advocacy because, when taken as a whole, such communication is likely to be interpreted by a reasonable person only as advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or candidates or the success or defeat of a measure or measures, taking into account whether the communication involved mentions a candidacy or a political party, or takes a position on a candidate’s character, qualifications or fitness for office.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:2)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

A political committee’s registration must be received by the secretary of state not later than 48 hours after the committee meets at least one of the following criteria:

  • Political committees whose major purpose is to promote the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures and whose receipts or expenditures total $2,500 or more in a calendar year.
  • Political committees who do not have as its major purpose to promote the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures but that makes expenditures that total $5,000 or more in a calendar year.

Registration requirements for political advocacy organizations are the same as for political committees.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:2, N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:3-a)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Any candidate at the primary or general election for governor, councilor, state senator, representative to general court, or county officer whose receipts or expenditures exceeding $1,000 must file reports.
  • Any political committee that has as its major purpose to promote the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures and whose receipts or expenditures total $2,500 or more in a calendar year must file reports.
  • Any political committee that does not have as its major purpose to promote the success or defeat of a candidate or candidates or measure or measures but that makes expenditures that total $5,000 or more in a calendar year must file reports.
  • Any political committee whose independent expenditures, in aggregate, total $1,000 or more in a calendar year must file reports.
  • Any entity that spends $5,000 or more in a calendar year to pay for a communication that is functionally equivalent to express advocacy because, when taken as a whole, such communication is likely to be interpreted by a reasonable person only as advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or candidates or the success or defeat of a measure or measures must file reports.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:6, N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:6-a, N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:7)

Reporting Timelines

Candidate committee, political committee and political advocacy organizations disclosure statements must be filed:

  • Not later than the first Wednesday in June and December after the state general election.
  • Not later than the Wednesday 12 weeks immediately preceding a primary election.
  • Wednesday immediately preceding a primary and a general election.

Candidates and political committees must file a report within 48 hours of any contribution exceeding $500 that is received after the last report was filed and prior to the day of election.

Any candidate or political committee which has any outstanding debt, obligation or surplus following the election must file reports at least once every six months thereafter until the obligation or indebtedness is entirely satisfied or surplus deleted, at which time a final report should be filed.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:6, RSA 664:6, 7)

Filing Method

Reports of receipts and expenditures may be filed electronically.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:9-b)

Penalties

  • Any individual who violates any provision of the political expenditures and contributions chapter will be guilty of a misdemeanor, and any other entity who does the same will be guilty of a felony.
  • Any political committee other than a political committee of a candidate that fails to register will be subject to a fine up to 25% of the total amount of independent expenditures made during the period from the date the political committee was required to register to the date the political committee registered.
  • Any political committee that fails to report independent expenditures will be subject to a fine up to 25% of the total amount of independent expenditures not reported or reported late.
  • Any person who fails to file any report or statement on the date on which the report or statement is due shall be subject to a daily fine of $25 for every weekday for which the report or statement is late until the report or statement is actually filed, except candidates for the New Hampshire General Court will be subject to a daily fine of $5.
  • Any person who willfully makes and subscribes to any statement filed under the political expenditures and contributions chapter that he or she does not believe to be true and correct as to every material matter will be guilty of false swearing.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:21)

NEW JERSEY

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Political committees.
  • Continuing political committees.
  • Political party committees.

Political committees means any two or more persons acting jointly, or any corporation, partnership or any other incorporated or unincorporated association which is organized to, or does, aid or promote the nomination, election or defeat of any candidate or candidates for public office, or which is organized to, or does, aid or promote the passage or defeat of a public question in any election, if the political committee raises or expends $2,400 or more to so aid or promote the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate or candidates or the passage or defeat of a public question.

Continuing political committee means any group of two or more persons acting jointly, or any corporation, partnership or any other incorporated or unincorporated association, including a political club, political action committee, civic association or other organization, which in any calendar year contributes or expects to contribute at least $5,500 to the aid or promotion of a candidate, or the passage or defeat of a public question or public questions.

(N.J. Stat. § 19:44A-3)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must register by filing the Single Candidate Committee Certificate of Organization and Designation of Campaign Treasurer and Depository no later than 10 days after establishing a candidate committee.
  • Political committees that raise or expend $2,400 or more to aid or promote the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate or candidates or the passage or defeat of a public question must register.
  • Continuing political committees that contribute or expect to contribute at least $5,500 to the aid or promotion of the candidacy of an individual, or of the candidacies of individuals, for elective public office, or the passage or defeat of a public question or public questions, must register.
  • Independent expenditure committees that raise or expend $3,000 or more in influencing or attempting to influence the outcome of any election or the nomination, election or defeat of any person to any state or local elective public office, or the passage or defeat of any public question, legislation or regulation must register.

(N.J. Stat. § 19:44A-3)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported. 
  • Political committees that raise or expend $2,400 or more to aid or promote the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate or candidates or the passage or defeat of a public question must file reports with the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (NJELEC).
  • Continuing political committees that contribute or expect to contribute at least $5,500 to the aid or promotion of the candidacy of an individual, or of the candidacies of individuals, for elective public office, or the passage or defeat of a public question or public questions must file reports with the NJELEC.
  • Independent expenditure committees that raise or expend $3,000 or more in influencing or attempting to influence the outcome of any election or the nomination, election or defeat of any person to any State or local elective public office, or the passage or defeat of any public question, legislation or regulation must file reports with the NJELEC.

(N.J.A.C. 19:25-10.2, N.J.A.C. 19:25-8.8)

Reporting Timelines

The timing for filing reports depends upon when the committee begins financial activity. If the committee is established within five months or less before the pre-election report, the committee will file a pre-election report as the initial report. However, if the committee is established more than five months prior to the pre-election report, the committee must file a quarterly report as its initial election fund report.

Candidates, political committees and continuing political committees must file:

  • Quarterly reports on April 15, July 15, Oct. 15 and Jan. 15.
  • 29-day pre-election report on the 29th day before the election.
  • 11-day pre-election report on the 11th day before the election.
  • 20-day post-election report on the 20th day following the election.

Any candidate or committee that receives contributions from a single source aggregating more than $1,900, or that make expenditures aggregating more than $1,900, between the 13th day prior to the election and the date of the election must file a report within 48 hours.

Political party committees file quarterly reports on April 15, July 15, Oct. 15 and Jan. 15.

(N.J.A.C. 19:25-8.1, N.J.A.C. 19:25-8.3, N.J.A.C. 19:25-8.6A, N.J.A.C. 19:25-8.9)

Filing Method

Electronic Filing is mandatory for all candidates and committees.

(N.J.S.A. 19:44A-16)

Penalties

  • Any person who fails to file reports will be subject to a penalty. The penalty for each such separate offense in an amount that is not less than the dollar amount of the unreported contribution or expenditure reporting transaction, up to the maximum penalty for each unreported contribution or expenditure reporting transaction. The maximum penalty will not be more than $9,800 for the first offense and not more than $19,500 for the second and each subsequent offense.
  • Any person who purposely and with intent to conceal or misrepresent contributions given or received or expenditures made or incurred is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree.
  • The purposeful filing of an inaccurate, false or incomplete report or purposely failing or refusing to file a report is a crime of the fourth degree.
  • Any person who willfully makes or accepts illegal contributions will be subject to a penalty. The penalty varies from $5,000 to $100,000, depending on the amount of the illegal contribution.
  • Any person who fails, neglects or omits to prepare, certify, file, or retain any such report, record, notice or document is liable to a penalty of not more than $9,800 for the first offense and not more than $19,500 for the second and each subsequent offense.

(N.J.A.C. 19:25-17.3)

NEW MEXICO

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means:

  • A political party.
  • A legislative caucus committee.
  • An association that consists of two or more persons whose primary purpose is to make contributions to candidates, campaign committees or political committees or make coordinated expenditures or any combination thereof.
  • An association that consists of two or more persons whose primary purpose is to make independent expenditures and that has received more than $5,000 in contributions or made independent expenditures of more than $5,000 in the election cycle.

Person means an individual or entity.

(N.M. Stat. Ann. § 1-19-26)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Political committees need to register and file a statement of organization with the secretary of state prior to receiving or making any contribution or expenditure for a political purpose.
  • Candidates for a non-statewide office must register the candidate's campaign committee with the secretary of state within 10 days of receiving contributions or expending $1,000 or more.
  • Candidates for statewide office must register the candidate's campaign committee with the secretary of state within 10 days of receiving contributions or expending $3,000 or more.

(1.10.13.10 NMAC, N.M. Stat. Ann. § 1-19-26.1, 1.10.13.8 NMAC)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Any person who makes an independent expenditure of more than $1,000 in a non-statewide election or question or in an amount more than $3,000 in a statewide race or ballot measure must file a report with the secretary of state.

(1.10.13.12 NMAC, 1.10.13.13 NMAC)

Reporting Timelines

In a non-election year, candidates and political committees file biannual reports no later than the second Monday in April and October.

In an election year, candidates and political committees file the following reports:

  • No later than the second Monday in April, a report of all expenditures made, and contributions received on or before the first Monday in April and not previously reported.
  • No later than the second Monday in May, a report of all expenditures made, and contributions received on or before the first Monday in May and not previously reported.
  • No later than the second Monday in September, a report of all expenditures made, and contributions received on or before the first Monday in September and not previously reported.
  • No later than the second Monday in October, a report of all expenditures made, and contributions received on or before the first Monday in October and not previously reported; provided that if the second Monday of October is a state holiday, the report must be made on the following day.
  • Any contribution or pledge to contribute that is received after 5 p.m. on the Tuesday before the election and that is for more than $1,000 in a non-statewide election or more than $3,000 in a statewide election must be reported within 24 hours.
  • A report is due by 5 p.m. on the 30th day after a primary, general or statewide special election, reporting all expenditures made and contributions received on or before the 25th day after the election that have not been previously disclosed.
  • No later than the 30th day after a primary election, a report by all reporting individuals, except those individuals that become candidates after the primary election, of all expenditures made and contributions received on or before the twenty-fifth day after the primary election and not previously reported.
  • No later than the 30th day after a statewide special election, a report of all expenditures made, and contributions received on or before the 25th day after the statewide special election and not previously reported.
  • No later than Jan. 7 after a general election a report of all expenditures made and contributions received on or before Dec. 31 after the general election and not previously reported.

In addition to the reports mentioned above, additional reports may need to be filed:

  • A person who makes an independent expenditure must file within three days of making the expenditure if the expenditure, by itself or aggregated with all independent expenditures made by the same person during the election cycle, exceeds $1,000 in a non-statewide election(s) or question(s) or in an amount that exceeds $3,000 in a statewide race(s) or ballot measure(s).
  • Any expenditure in an amount of $3,000 or more that is made within seven days before a non-statewide election must be reported within 24 hours.

(N.M. Stat. Ann. § 1-19-29, 1.10.13.14 NMAC)

Filing Method

The campaign finance disclosure reports should be filed electronically. A waiver may be given due to hardship.  

(N.M. Stat. Ann. §1-19-29, 1.10.13.12 NMAC)

Penalties

  • Any person who knowingly and willfully violates any provision of the Campaign Reporting Act is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine of not more than $1,000 or by imprisonment for not more than one year or both.
  • Any person who files a false, late or incomplete report will be assessed $500 the first day, $50 for each regular working day until a complete report is filed. The maximum penalty is $5,000.
  • Any person who fails to file a report of late contributions will be assessed a penalty equal to the amount of the contribution not reported. The maximum cumulative penalties for each report for which fines are assessed are as follows:
  • $5,000 for statewide candidate committees and political committees.
  • $2,500 for legislative, district judge, district attorney and public education commission candidate committees.
  • $1,000 for county candidate committees running in a county designated as Class A.
  • $500 for all other non-Class A county candidate committees.
  • If the secretary of state exhausts efforts in seeking voluntary compliance and reasonably believes that a person committed, or is about to commit, a violation of the Campaign Reporting Act, the secretary of state will refer the matter to the attorney general for enforcement. With or without a referral from the secretary of state, attorney general may institute a civil action in district court if a violation has occurred or to prevent a violation of any provision of the Campaign Reporting Act. Relief may include a permanent or temporary injunction, a restraining order or any other appropriate order, including an order for a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for each violation not to exceed a total of $20,000.

(N.M. Stat. Ann. §§ 1-19-35, 1-19-34.6, 1-19-36:1)

NEW YORK

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any corporation aiding or promoting and any committee, political club or combination of one or more persons operating or co-operating to aid or to promote the success or defeat of a political party or principle, or of any ballot proposal; or to aid or take part in the election or defeat of a candidate for public office or to aid or take part in the election or defeat of a candidate for nomination at a primary election or convention, including all proceedings prior to such primary election, or of a candidate for any party position voted for at a primary election, or to aid or defeat the nomination by petition of an independent candidate for public office.

  • Political committees include, but are not limited to, candidate committees, PAC committees, party committees, independent expenditure committees and ballot issue committees.

Person means an individual, group of persons, corporation, unincorporated business entity, labor organization or business, trade or professional association or organization or political committee.

(N.Y. Elec. Law § 14-100)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • All candidate and political committees must file the appropriate registration forms to register with the New York State Board of Elections (NYSBE). Registration forms must be submitted within five days of choosing a treasurer and depository and prior to receiving or expending any funds.
  • Independent expenditure committees must register within five days of choosing a treasurer and depository and prior to receiving and expending any funds.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates that expect to receive or spend more than $1,000 for an election must file reports with the NYSBE. A candidate committee may obtain a reporting waiver exemption from filing detailed campaign statements if the threshold is not met.
  • Political committees that expect to receive $1,000 in the aggregate in any calendar year must file reports with the NYSBE. A reporting waiver exemption may be granted if the threshold is not met and the committee made no expenditures.
  • A political committee formed solely to promote the success or defeat of any ballot proposal submitted to voters doesn't need to file until that committee has received or expended an amount over $100.
  • Any independent expenditure committee that has registered must disclose to the NYSBE any contributions of $1,000 or more, any expenditures over $5,000, and any independent expenditure in the form of a paid internet or digital advertisement over $500 made during the reporting period.
  • Any independent expenditure committee that has registered with the NYSBE must disclose, within 24 hours, any contribution of $1,000 or more or expenditure made over $5,000 made within 30 days before any primary, general or special election.
  • A person making independent expenditures for a communication must file a report with the NYSBE. Persons making independent expenditures and electioneering communications expenditures do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.

(NY CLS Elec § 14-124, 14-107)

Reporting Timelines

All candidates and/or registered committees must file reports:

  • 32 days pre-election.
  • 11-days pre-election.
  • 10-days post-election for primary elections.
  • 27-days post-election for general or special elections.

All candidates and/or registered committees are required to file January and July periodic reports until termination of the committee.

Any contribution or loan over $1,000, when it is received after the 11-day pre-election report and up to Election Day must be reported and submitted within 24 hours of receipt of contribution or loan. This same contribution or loan must also be reported in the post-election report.

If the candidate or committee has had no activity, (i.e., receipts and/or expenditures, such as interest, dividends and bank charges; any outstanding loans/liabilities) during any required reporting period, the candidate or committee may file a no-activity report.

Any person and political committee making independent expenditures and electioneering communications must file:

  • When a contribution or loan of $1,000 or more is received outside the 30-days of an election, it must be disclosed on a weekly basis, on Monday to the New York State Board of Elections (NYSBE).
  • When an expenditure over $5,000 is made outside of the 30-days of an election, it must be disclosed on a weekly basis, on Monday, to the NYSBE.
  • When a liability is incurred over $5,000 (year-round), it must be disclosed on a weekly basis, on Monday, to the NYSBE.
  • Any paid advertisement expenditure over $500 must be disclosed on a weekly basis, on Monday, to the NYSBE. 
  • When a contribution or loan of $1,000 or more is received within 30 days of the election, it must be disclosed within 24 hours to the NYSBE.
  • When an expenditure over $5,000 is made within 30 days of the election, it must be disclosed within 24 hours to the NYSBE.

(NY CLS Elec § 14-108, 9 NYCRR § 6200.2)

Filing Method

Campaign finance disclosure reports should be filed electronically. An exemption may be granted to file reports by mail.

(NY CLS Elec § 14-102)

Penalties

  • Bearing false statements, sworn or subscribed, are punishable as a Class A misdemeanor.
  • Failure to file a statement carries a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000.
  • Unlawfully accepting a contribution over a contribution limitation carries a civil penalty equal to the excess amount plus a fine of up to $10,000.
  • Any person who falsely identifies or knowingly fails to identify any independent expenditure shall be subject to a civil penalty up to $1,000 or up to the cost of the communication, whichever is greater.
  • Any person who knowingly and willfully contributes, accepts or aids or participates in the acceptance of a contribution more than the contribution limit will be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor.
  • Any person who knowingly and willfully makes expenditures or solicits any person to make any such expenditures, for the purpose of evading the contribution limits will be guilty of a Class E felony.
  • Any online platform that fails to verify that an independent expenditure committee is registered in New York will be subject to a civil penalty up to $1,000 for each violation in a special proceeding or civil action brought by the State Board of Elections Chief Enforcement Counsel.

(NY CLS Elec § 14-124, NY CLS Elec § 14-126)

NORTH CAROLINA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means a combination of two or more individuals, such as any person, committee, association, organization or other entity that makes, or accepts anything of value to make, contributions or expenditures and has one or more of the following characteristics:

  • Is controlled by a candidate.
  • Is a political party or executive committee of a political party.
  • Is created by a corporation, business entity, insurance company, labor union or professional association.
  • Has the major purpose to support or oppose the nomination or election of one or more clearly identified candidates.
  • Is an affiliated party committee.

Person means any business entity, corporation, insurance company, labor union or professional association.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.6)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Candidates and political committees must register no later than the 10th day following the day the candidate files notice of candidacy or the 10th day following the organization of the political committee, whichever occurs first.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.7)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Any individual or person making independent expenditures more than $100 must file a statement with the State Board of Elections (SBE).
  • Any individual or person making electioneering communication expenditures more than $5,000 must file a statement with the SBE.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 163-278.12, 163-278.12C)

Reporting Timelines

A candidate and political committee must file:

  • Quarterly reports in election years.
  • Semi-annual reports in July and January in non-election years.    
  • Any contribution of $1,000 or more received after the filing of the last report, but before an election must be reported within 48 hours.

A referendum committee must file:

  • Pre-referendum reports before the primary and general election.
  • Final reports covering the 14 days before a primary and general election.
  • Supplemental final reports, if the final report does not cover all contributions and expenditures.
  • An annual report in January.
  • Any contribution $1,000 or more received before an election must be reported within 48 hours.

Independent expenditures are required to be reported within 30 days after they exceed $100 or 10 days before an election, whichever occurs earlier.

Subsequent reporting of independent expenditures is on the same schedule required of political committees.

An individual or person that makes an independent expenditure or produces or airs an electioneering communication must report within 48 hours of incurring an expense of $5,000 or more or receiving a donation of $1,000 or more for making an electioneering communication after the period covered by the last report and before the election.

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports may be filed electronically or on paper.

The following entities must electronically file each report:

  • A candidate for statewide office, if contributions and expenditures are more than $5,000.
  • A state, district, county or precinct executive committee of a political party or an affiliated party committee, if the committee makes contributions or independent expenditures over $5,000 that affect contests for statewide office.
  • A political committee that makes contributions over $5,000 to candidates for statewide office or makes independent expenditures over $5,000 that affect contests for statewide office.
  • All other political committees, if contributions and expenditures are more than $10,000.

(N.C.G.S. §163-278.9, 08 NCAC 21 .0106)

Penalties

  • An intentional violation of most provisions of campaign finance law carries a Class Two misdemeanor.
  • Illegal contributions or unlawful expenditures carries a civil penalty not to exceed three times the amount of the illegal contribution or expenditure.
  • The late filing penalty carries a fine of $250 per day for a report affecting statewide elections, not to exceed $10,000, and $50 per day for a report affecting non-statewide elections, not to exceed $500. If a committee intentionally files a report late in order to conceal contributions or expenditures, the SBE may assess additional financial penalties.
  • The SBE, in lieu of or in addition to imposing a civil penalty for late penalties and illegal contributions or expenditures, may take one or more of the following actions:
  • Issue an order requiring the violator to cease and desist from the violation found.
  • Issue an order to cease receiving contributions and making expenditures until a delinquent report has been filed and any civil penalty satisfied.
  • Issue an order requiring the violator to take any remedial action deemed appropriate by the State Board of Elections.
  • Issue an order requiring the violator to file any report, statement or other information.
  • Publicly reprimand the violator for the violation.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.34, N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.27)

NORTH DAKOTA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Political parties.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any committee, club, association or other group of persons which receives contributions or makes expenditures for political purposes and includes:

  • A political action committee not connected to another, or derived from a corporation, cooperative corporation, limited liability company, affiliate, subsidiary, or an association that solicits or receives contributions from its employees or members, or makes expenditures for political purposes on behalf of its employees or members.
  • A candidate committee established to support an individual candidate seeking public office which solicits or receives contributions for political purposes.
  • A political organization registered with the Federal Election Commission, which solicits or receives contributions or makes expenditures for political purposes.
  • A multicandidate political committee, including a caucus, established to support multiple groups or slates of candidates seeking public office, which solicits or receives contributions for political purposes.
  • A measure committee, including an initiative- or referendum-sponsoring committee at any stage of its organization, which solicits or receives contributions or makes expenditures for the purpose of aiding or opposing a measure to be voted on by the voters of the state.

Person means an individual, partnership, political committee, association, corporation, cooperative corporation, limited liability company or other organization or group of persons.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates and political committees must register with the secretary of state within 15 business days of the receipt of any contribution or expenditure made.

A political committee that organizes and registers according to federal law and makes an independent expenditure or makes a disbursement over $200 to a nonfederal candidate seeking public office, a political party or political committee in this state is not required to register as a political committee.

(N.D. Cent. Code, § 16.1-08.1-03.2)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Persons making independent expenditures do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • The reporting threshold is $100 for any person engaged in ballot measure activities.

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political committees must file:

  • An annual report on Jan. 31.
  • A pre-primary report no later than 32 days before the election.
  • Pre-general report no later than 32 days before the election.
  • The receipt of a contribution or aggregate contributions from a contributor which is over $500 must be filed within 48 hours if it is within 39 days before the election.

Political committees making independent expenditures file the same reports mentioned above.

Independent expenditure filers must file a report disclosing a contribution or an independent expenditure within 48 hours after making the contribution or independent expenditure.

Filing Method

Campaign finance disclosure reports must be filed electronically.

 (N.D.C.C. §16.1-08.1-06)

Penalties

  • Any person who willfully violates any provision of the campaign contribution statements requirements may be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor.
  • A late report is subject to late fees:
  • Within six days after the prescribed time, the late fee is $25.
  • Within 11 days after the prescribed time, the late fee is $50.
  • Thereafter, the late fee is $100.
  • A late amendment to a report is subject to late fees:
  • Within six days after the date the amendment was due, the late fee is $50;
  • Within 11 days after the date the amendment was due, the late fee is $100; and
  • Thereafter, the late fee is $200.
  • Any person violating the political advertisements requirements is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor.

(N.D. Cent. Code, § 16.1-08.1-07)

OHIO

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Political contributing entities.
  • Political parties.
  • Persons.

Political contributing entity means any entity, including a corporation or labor organization, that may lawfully make contributions and expenditures and that is not an individual or a PAC, continuing association, campaign committee, political party, legislative campaign fund, designated state campaign committee or state candidate fund.

Person means an individual, partnership, unincorporated business organization or association, PAC, political contributing entity, separate segregated fund, association or other organization or group of persons, but not a labor organization or a corporation unless the labor organization or corporation is a political contributing entity.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.01)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Candidates, PACs, political contributing entities, campaign committees, legislative campaign funds or political parties must register before receiving any contribution or making any expenditure.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. §§ 3517.10 and 3517.11)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, PACs, political contributing entities and political parties do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Persons making independent expenditures do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Any person that makes disbursements for the producing or airing of electioneering communications aggregating over $10,000 must file a report with secretary of state.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.10, 3517.1011)

Reporting Timelines

Every campaign committee, PAC, political party and political contributing entity that made or received a contribution or made an expenditure must file:

  • An annual report on the last business day of January.
  • A pre-primary election report 12 days before an election. However:
  • Any campaign committee, political action committee, political party or political contributing entity that has received contributions of less than $1,000 and has made expenditures of less than $1,000 at the close of business on the 20th day before the election do not need to file this report.
  • A post-primary report 38 days after an election.
  • A pre-general election report due 12 days before an election. However:
  • Any campaign committee, political action committee, political party or political contributing entity that has received contributions of less than $1,000 and has made expenditures of less than $1,000 at the close of business on the 20th day before the election do not need to file this report.
  • A post-general report 38 days after an election.
  • A monthly report in July, August and September in the year of the general election in which the candidate seeks office. This report is filed by statewide candidates only.

In non-election years, statewide and county candidate must file semiannual reports on the last business day of July.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. §3517.10)

Filing Method

Campaign finance disclosure reports must be filed electronically.

(ORC Ann. 3517.11)

Penalties

  • A board of elections, the secretary of state, or an individual may file a campaign finance-related complaint, but only the Ohio Elections Commission may find a violation of campaign finance law and impose a penalty.
  • A candidate whose campaign committee fails to file a complete and accurate report will be fined not more than $100 per day.
  • A PAC that fails to file a complete and accurate report will be fined not more than $100 per day.
  • A candidate campaign committee or a treasurer of a campaign committee that violates the reporting requirements will be fined not more than $500. 
  • Any individual, campaign committee, PAC, political contributing entity, political party or other entity that violates any provision of the Ohio Elections Chapter for which no penalty is provided will be fined not more than $1,000.
  • Each report must contain a statement that the report is complete and accurate. Any person who falsifies a report is guilty of a felony of the fifth degree.
  • Any person who violates the disclaimer rules will be fined not more than $500.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. §3517.11, 3517.105, 3517.153, 3517.20, 3517.992, 3599.36)

OKLAHOMA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Party committees.
  • Persons.

Person means an individual, corporation, limited liability company, association, proprietorship, firm, partnership, limited liability partnership, limited partnership, joint venture, joint stock company, syndicate, business trust, estate, trust, company, organization, committee, club or a group of persons who are voluntarily acting in concert.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must file a statement of organization within 10 days after a candidate has accepted or spent more than $1,000 for his or her campaign.
  • PACs must file a statement of organization within 10 days after the PAC has accepted or spent more than $1,000.
  • State political party committees are required to register or renew with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission (OEC) by filing a statement of organization in July of any odd-numbered year.
  • Ballot measure committees must register by filing a statement of organization with the OEC when its contributions or expenditures exceed $1,000.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Any candidate, PAC or ballot measure committee that accepts or gives contributions or makes expenditures aggregating $1,000 or more must file a report with the OEC.
  • Any person, other than an individual or a political action committee, who makes an independent expenditure or electioneering communication of $5,000 or more, in the aggregate, at least 15 days prior to any election must be required to file a report with the OEC.

Reporting Timelines

All committees must file:

  • Quarterly reports in non-election years in April, July, October and January.
  • Pre-election reports no later than eight days before an election.
  • Post-election reports in January of the year following the general election.
  • Any contributions over $1,000 in the aggregate must be filed within 24 hours if received:
  • After the last day of the primary election pre-election reporting period and ending two days before the primary election.
  • After the last day of the runoff primary election pre-election reporting period and ending two days before the runoff.
  • After the last day of the general election pre-election reporting period and ending two days before the general election.

A state political party committee files quarterly reports in April, July, October and January.

Any person other than an individual, including a PAC and political party committee, that makes an electioneering communication expenditure of $5,000 or more in the aggregate during the period beginning no more than 14 days prior to any election and ending on the day of the election must file a report within 24 hours.

(Ethics Commission Annotated Rule 2.100, 74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 10-1-13)

Filing Method

Campaign reports must be filed electronically.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 10-1-18)

Penalties

  • The OEC is authorized to issue compliance orders to obtain compliance with campaign finance rules, including late fees.
  • A candidate committee that files more than one quarterly report after the due date is deemed to have intentionally failed to file the report, unless good cause is shown. A committee that files reports significantly late or has significant compliance issues may be addressed through the OEC’s complaints process, rather than through compliance orders.

The OEC may accept a complaint from any source, other than an anonymous source.

OREGON

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Petition committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means a combination of two or more individuals, or a person other than an individual, that has received a contribution for the purpose of supporting or opposing a candidate, measure or political party; or made an expenditure for the purpose of supporting or opposing a candidate, measure or political party.

Petition committee means an initiative, referendum or recall petition committee.

Person means an individual, corporation, limited liability company, labor organization, association, firm, partnership, joint stock company, club, organization or other combination of individuals having collective capacity.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.005)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidate and political committees must register by the third business day after a political committee first receives a contribution or makes an expenditure.
  • Petition committees must file a statement of organization not later than three business days after first receiving a contribution or making an expenditure after filing a prospective petition.
  • A person must register as an independent expenditure filer if any of the following are true:
  • A person makes independent expenditures of more than $250 in a calendar year for a communication to support or oppose any candidate or measure.
  • A person makes independent expenditures of $250 or more for a communication that refers to a clearly identified candidate or measure that will appear on the ballot and the communication is published and disseminated to the relevant electorate within 60 calendar days before the primary election, 120 calendar days before the general election or 90 calendar days before any other election.
  • A person makes independent expenditures of more than $250 for a communication that refers to a political party and the communication is published and disseminated to the relevant electorate within 60 calendar days before the primary election, 120 calendar days before the general election or 90 calendar days before any other election.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.035)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, political committees and petition committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.  
  • A person that makes independent expenditures of more than $250 in a calendar year for a communication to support or oppose any candidate or measure must report with the secretary of state.

Reporting Timelines

Candidate, political and petition committees must file:

  • Reports of transactions that occur between the 42nd day before the election and Election Day are due no later than seven calendar days after the date of the transaction.
  • Reports of transactions that occur prior to the 42nd day before the election and has not been filed by the 43rd day before the election is due not later than 30 calendar days after the date of the transactions or by the 35th day before the election, whichever date occurs first.
  • A statement of contributions received and expenditures made not later than 30 calendar days after a contribution is received or an expenditure is made.

All candidate and political committees are presumed to be active at each primary and general election unless they are eligible to inactivate themselves for the election and affirmatively take steps to do so by opting out of seven-day reporting.

Political committees making independent expenditures must file:

  • Reports within 30 days of the date of independent expenditures.
  • Reports of independent expenditures made between the 42nd day before the election and Election Day are due seven calendar days after the date of the transaction.
  • Reports of independent expenditures that occur prior to the 42nd day before the election and have not been reported by the 43rd day before the election is due by the 35th day before the election.

Any persons or independent expenditure filers making independent expenditures must file:

  • Reports within seven days of initially exceeding the $250 threshold amount.
  • Additional reports are generally due within 30 days of the date of making a subsequent independent expenditure.
  • Reports on independent expenditures made prior to the 42nd days before an election that have not been reported are due by the 35th day before an election.
  • If an independent expenditure is made within 42 days of a primary or general election, the statement must be filed within seven days.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.057)

Filing Method

  • Reports may be filed electronically or by paper.
  • If a committee expects to receive a total of more than $3,500 or spend a total of more than $3,500 for a calendar year, the committee must file all transactions electronically.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.057)

Penalties

  • The secretary of state may impose civil penalties for failure to file a timely or sufficient transaction report or to include required information in a report. The penalty for a late transaction is one-half of 1% of the amount of the transaction or one-half of 1% of the amount of the change (for an increase or decrease in transaction amount) multiplied by the number of business days the transaction is filed late.
  • The secretary of state may impose civil penalties for certain campaign finance violations in addition to late or insufficient transaction reports.
  • Criminal penalties may apply if a transaction report verified as true by the treasurer or candidate is knowingly submitted with false information.
  • Failure to file a statement or certificate will be assessed 10% of the total amount of the contribution or expenditure required to be included in the statement.
  • The penalty is $10 per item for all missing or insufficient items, except for the failure to provide the terms of a loan made or received, which is 1% of the loan amount.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. §  260.995, 260.232, 260.205)

PENNSYLVANIA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any committee, club, association or other group of persons which receives contributions or makes expenditures.

(25 P.S. § 3241)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

Candidates and political committees must register within 20 days after the date on which its total of contributions reach $250 or more.

Reporting Thresholds

Political committees and candidates must file reports of receipts and expenditures if the total amount received or expended, or liabilities, are $250 or more with the secretary of the commonwealth.

Any person, other than a political committee, who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount more than $100 during a calendar year must file a report with the secretary of the commonwealth.

(25 P.S. § 3246)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political committees must file a report:

  • Annually on Jan. 31.
  • On the sixth Tuesday before an election.
  • On the second Tuesday before an election.
  • 30 days after an election. 

Any candidate or political committee which receives any contribution or pledge of $500 or more 15 days before the primary general election must report the contribution within 24 hours.

Persons making independent expenditures other than by contributions to a political committee or candidate in an aggregate amount over $100 during a calendar year must file reports not later than 45 days and at least 10 days before the election in the case of statewide elections.

Persons making independent expenditures other than by contributions to a political committee or candidate in an aggregate amount over $100 during a calendar year must file election reports not later than 10 days prior to the election in the case of candidates or questions which are not statewide. These reports must indicate expenditures as of 15 days prior to the election.

Candidates, political committees and persons who make independent expenditures and are required to file a pre-election report must also file a post-election report not later than 30 days after the election. This report must indicate receipts and expenditures as of 20 days after the election.

Persons making an independent expenditure of $500 or more after 15 days prior to the election must file a report within 24 hours of the expenditure.

(4 Pa. Code § 177.3, 25 P.S. § 3247, 25 P.S. § 3248)

Filing Method

  • Reports may be filed on paper, electronically or on a compact disc.
  • 24 hour reports can be filed either by fax or email.

(25 Pa. C.S. §3251)

Penalties

  • Each report or statement of expenditures and contributions not filed within the prescribed period is subject to a $10 fee for each day the report is overdue. An additional fee of $10 is due for each of the first six days that a report is overdue. The maximum fee for a single report is $250.
  • Criminal proceedings against candidates who willfully accepted any contributions or made any expenditures in violation is possible. Criminal determinations are made by the attorney general.

(25 P.S. § 3252, 25 P.S. § 3257)

RHODE ISLAND

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Political party committees.
  • Ballot-question advocates.
  • Persons.

Person means an individual, partnership, committee, association, corporation, union, charity and/or any other organization.

A ballot-question advocate is any person making an expenditure with a cumulative total that exceeds $1,000 in a calendar year for ballot question advocacy on a particular ballot question.

(R.I. Gen. Laws §§ 17-25-3, 17-25-7)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must register before receiving a contribution or making an expenditure, or upon filing for candidacy, whichever is earlier.
  • PACs must register before receiving a contribution or making an expenditure.
  • Political party committees must register on or before Jan. 31 every calendar year.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidate, PACs and political party committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.  
  • A person or PAC who makes or contracts to make independent expenditures or electioneering communications with an aggregate value of $1,000 or more must electronically file a campaign finance report to the Rhode Island State Board of Elections (SBE).
  • Ballot-question advocates who expends a cumulative total that exceeds $1,000 for ballot-question advocacy must report to the SBE.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25.3-1)

Reporting Timelines

  • In a non-election year, candidates, PACs and parties not participating in an election must file quarterly reports.
  • In an election year, candidates, PACs and parties participating in an election must file reports:
  • Quarterly.
  • 28 days before primary.
  • Seven days before primary.
  • 28 days before general.
  • Seven days before general.
  • 20 days after election.
  • Any person, business entity or PAC making independent expenditures or electioneering communications more than $1,000must report all such campaign finance expenditures and expenses to the Board of Elections within seven days of making the expenditure.
  • Any person, business entity or PAC making independent expenditures or electioneering communications more than $1,000 30 days prior to the election must report all expenditures and expenses within 24 hours.
  • The first report must be filed by a ballot-question advocate when the ballot-question advocate expends a cumulative total that exceeds $1,000 for ballot-question advocacy. A ballot-question advocate must thereafter file calendar month reports with the board of elections due no later than seven days after the end of the month.
  • A ballot-question advocate must file a final report of contributions received and expenditures made for ballot-question advocacy no later than 30 days after the election for the ballot question is held.
  • The board of elections may grant a seven-day extension for filing a report; provided, however, that the request must be received no later than the date and time upon which the report is due to be filed. If the election for the ballot question is to be held less than seven days from the report due date and time, the report must be filed prior to the election date.

(R.I. Gen. Laws §§ 17-25.2-5, 17-25-11)

Filing Method

  • Candidates for governor, lt. governor, secretary of state, attorney general and state treasurer must file electronically.
  • All other candidates for public office and political parties, other than state political parties, who raise or expend more than $10,000 annually, or whose report shows a balance of $25,000 or more must file electronically.
  • State political parties and PACs required to file campaign finance reports and who raise or expend more than $10,000 annually, or whose report shows a balance of $25,000 or more must file electronically.

(R.I. Gen. Laws Section 17-25-7.6)

Penalties

  • The SBE may fine any person or entity who violates the provisions of campaign reporting chapter in an amount up to $100 per violation. The board may also request the attorney general to bring an action in the superior court against a person or entity which may result in fines and forfeitures.
  • Any person who willfully and knowingly violates the campaign contributions and expenditures reporting requirements will, upon conviction, be guilty of a misdemeanor and will be fined not more than $1,000 per violation.
  • The SBE may fine any person or entity who violates the campaign contributions and expenditures reporting requirements in an amount not more than $100 per violation.
  • Fines, fees and penalties imposed by the SBE for violations of the campaign contributions and expenditures reporting requirements will be paid for by the candidate, officeholder or entity against whose campaign the fines, fees or penalties have been levied. Fines, fees and penalties levied by the Board of Elections will not be paid for from contributions or funds available in a campaign account.
  • Any person who willfully and knowingly violates the independent expenditure and electioneering communication requirements will, upon conviction, be guilty of a misdemeanor and be fined not more than $1,000 per violation.
  • The SBE may impose a civil penalty upon any person, business entity or PAC that violates the independent expenditure and electioneering communication requirements in the amount of $1,000, or up to 150% of the aggregate amount of the independent expenditures or electioneering communications per violation, whichever is greater.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25-13, R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25.3-4)

SOUTH CAROLINA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Committees.
  • Noncandidate committees.
  • Persons.

Committee means an association, a club, an organization or a group of persons which, to influence the outcome of an elective office, receives contributions or makes expenditures in excess of $500 in the aggregate during an election cycle. It also means a person who, to influence the outcome of an elective office, makes:

  • Contributions aggregating at least $25,000 during an election cycle to or at the request of a candidate or a committee or a combination of them. or
  • Independent expenditures aggregating $500 or more during an election cycle for the election or defeat of a candidate.

Committee includes a party committee, a legislative caucus committee or a committee that is not a campaign committee for a candidate but that is organized for the purpose of influencing an election.

Noncandidate committee means a committee that is not a campaign committee for a candidate but is organized to influence an election or to support or oppose a candidate or public official, which receives contributions or makes expenditures more than $500 in the aggregate during an election cycle.

A political action committee is a noncandidate committee.

Person means an individual, a proprietorship, firm, partnership, joint venture, joint stock company, syndicate, business trust, an estate, a company, committee, an association, a corporation, club, labor organization or any other organization or group of persons acting in concert.

(S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-100)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Committees and noncandidate committees that receive or expend more than $500 in the aggregate during an election cycle to influence the outcome of an elective office must file a statement of organization with the State Ethics Commission (SEC) no later than five days after receiving the contribution or making the expenditure.
  • An out-of-state committee which expends more than $500 in the aggregate during an election cycle to influence the outcome of an elective office must file a statement of organization with the State Ethics Commission (SEC) no later than five days after making the expenditure
  • A ballot measure committee which receives or expends more than $2,500 in the aggregate during an election cycle to influence the outcome of a ballot measure must file a statement of organization with the SEC no later than five days after receiving the contribution or making the expenditure.
  • An out-of-state ballot measure committee which expends more than $2,500 in the aggregate during an election cycle to influence the outcome of a ballot measure must file a statement of organization with the SEC no later than five days after making the expenditure.

(S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1304)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, committees and noncandidate committees that receive more than $500 in the aggregate during an election cycle must file reports with the SEC.
  • Any committee or noncandidate committee that receives contributions or makes independent expenditures in excess of $500 or more during an election cycle for the election or defeat of a candidate must file a report with the SEC.
  • Persons who, to influence the outcome of an elective office, make contributions aggregating at least $25,000 during an election cycle to or at the request of a candidate or a committee, or a combination of them, must file a report with the SEC.

Reporting Timelines

Candidates, committees and noncandidate committees must file campaign disclosure reports:

  • Within 10 days after spending or receiving the first $500 of the campaign funds.
  • No later than 15 days prior to each election. This report is required regardless of whether there has been any financial campaign activity or not.
  • Quarterly on Jan. 10, April 10, July 10 and Oct. 10 whether there has been any financial activity or not.

A committee must file a campaign report listing expenditures if it makes an independent expenditure or an incurred expenditure, an amount owed to a creditor for purchase of delivered goods or completed services, within the calendar quarter in which the election is conducted or 20 days before the election, whichever period of time is greater, in excess of:

  • $10,000 in the case of a candidate for statewide office. or
  • $2,000 in the case of a candidate for any other office.

A ballot measure committee is required to file a report within 10 days of receiving contributions or making expenditures totaling, in an accumulated aggregate, $2,500 or more. Ballot measure committees must file:

  • Quarterly reports on Jan. 10, April 10, July 10 and Oct. 10.
  • At least 15 days before a ballot measure election, a report showing contributions of more than $100 and expenditures to or by the ballot measure committee. This may be filed together with the quarterly report.

(S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1308)

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports can be filed either electronically or in a format specified by the SEC.

(S.C. Code §8-13-365)

Penalties

  • Civil penalties for late filings or failure to file reports carries a fine of $100 if the report is not filed within five days after established deadline. If notice has been given that a required statement or report has not been filed, a fine of $10 per day for the first 10 days and $100 for each additional day will be imposed.
  • Violations are a misdemeanor, with a fine of up to $5,000, up to one year in prison, or both.

(S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1510, S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1520)

SOUTH DAKOTA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Political party committees.
  • Ballot question committees.
  • Entities.

Political committee means any candidate campaign committee, political action committee (PAC), political party or ballot question committee.

Entity means any organized or unorganized association, business corporation, limited liability company, nonprofit corporation, limited liability partnership, limited liability limited partnership, limited partnership, partnership, cooperative, trust, a business trust, association, club, labor union or collective bargaining organization.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-1)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Political committees must file a statement of organization with the secretary of state not later than 15 days after the date upon which the committee made contributions, received contributions, or paid expenses over $500. If such activity falls within 30 days of any statewide election, the statement of organization must be filed within 48 hours.
  • Candidates must file a statement of organization for a candidate campaign committee with the secretary of state not later than 15 days after becoming a candidate.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-3)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Political committees, including ballot measure committees, that received contributions, or paid expenses over $500 must file reports with the secretary of state.
  • Candidates do not have a reporting threshold; in other words, everything must be reported.
  • Any person or entity that makes a payment or promise of payment totaling more than $100, including donated goods or services for an independent communication expenditure that concerns a candidate, public office holder, ballot question or political party must file a report with the secretary of state.

Reporting Timelines

All statewide candidates, statewide elected officials, statewide PACs, statewide political parties and statewide ballot question committee must file:

  • Year-end reports on the last Friday in January each year.
  • Pre-primary reports 15 days prior to the primary election.
  • Pre-general reports 15 days prior to the general election.

All legislative candidates and campaign committees must file:

  • Year-end reports the last Friday in January each year. Legislative candidates only file reports in even number years.
  • Pre-primary reports the last Friday in January each year. Legislative candidates only file if there is a race in that office.
  • Pre-general reports 15 days prior to the general election.

For any political committee that receives a contribution of $500 or more from any single source within 20 days before an election, a supplemental report must be filed within 48 hours of receipt of the contribution. If the contribution is received on or after Election Day, a supplemental report is not required.

Political committees that receive contributions and make independent expenditures and electioneering communications of $500 or more must list communication expenditures on their campaign finance disclosure report. A communication expenditures report is due within 48 hours of dissemination of the communication.

Any person or entity that makes a payment or promise of payment totaling more than $100, including donated goods or services, for an independent communication expenditure must file a communication report within 48 hours of dissemination of the communication.

Filing Method

  • Campaign disclosure reports may be filed electronically or by paper.
  • A candidate campaign committee for any statewide or legislative office or ballot question committee is required to file electronically with the secretary of state. 
  • A political committee or political party is required to file electronically with the secretary of state if the committee has received contributions in the aggregate of $1,000 or more during the period covered by the report.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-41)

Penalties

  • A registration violation is a Class two misdemeanor and any subsequent offense within a calendar year is a Class one misdemeanor.
  • A campaign finance disclosure statement violation is a Class one misdemeanor.
  • The attorney general may bring an action for a civil penalty against any person, political committee, political party or organization that violates the independent expenditure and communications requirements. In addition to any other penalties, the civil penalty may not exceed $2,000 for each violation.
  • The secretary of state may impose a $200 civil penalty for the failure to timely file any statement, amendment or correction required to be filed.
  • The secretary of state may refer repeated violations for prosecution by a state's attorney or the attorney general.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-3, S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-22, S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-43, S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-29.1)

TENNESSEE

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political campaign committees.
  • Persons.

Political campaign committee means any corporation, or any other organization making expenditures to support or oppose a measure; or any committee, club, corporation, association or other group of persons which receives contributions or makes expenditures to support or oppose any candidate or measure during a calendar year in an aggregate amount exceeding $1,000. This committee includes political actions committees (PAC) and measure committees.

A corporation that uses corporate funds, moneys or credits for communications expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate which funds, moneys or credits are not used with the cooperation or with the prior consent of, or in consultation with, or at the request of, or suggestion of, a candidate or any agent or authorized committee of the candidate will be considered a political campaign committee for purposes of reporting such expenditures.

Person means an individual, partnership, committee, association, corporation, labor organization or any other organization or group of persons.

(Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 2-10-102, 2-10-132)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Each candidate and political campaign committee must certify the name and address of the candidate's or committee's political treasurer to the registry of election finance or the county election commission, where appropriate, before the candidate or committee may receive a contribution or make an expenditure in a state or local election.

(Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-105)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates who receive contributions or makes expenditures more than $1,000 during a reporting period must file a report with Tennessee Registry of Election Finance (TREF).
  • Political campaign committees that receive contributions or makes expenditures more than $1,000 to support or oppose any candidate or measure during a reporting period must file a report with the TREF.

(Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-107, Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-105, Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-102)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political campaign committees must file:

  • Quarterly reports on Mar. 31, June 30, Sept. 30 and Jan. 15 during the election year.
  • Pre-primary reports that cover the period from the last day included in the July quarterly report through the 10th day before the primary election. This report is due seven days before the primary election.
  • Pre-general election reports that cover the period from the last day included in the third quarterly report through the 10th day before the general election. This report is due seven days before the general election.
  • A final report is due in January. If the final report shows an unexpended balance of contributions, continuing debts and obligations or an expenditure deficit the campaign treasurer must file supplemental semiannual reports of contributions and expenditures.

(Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-105, Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-106)

Filing Method

  • Reports may be filed electronically or by paper.
  • Candidates for state public offices and campaign committees that have contributions or expenditures over $1,000 per reporting period must file electronically.   
  • During the period beginning at midnight of the 10th day prior to a primary, general, runoff or special election or a referendum and extending through midnight of such election or referendum day, each candidate or political campaign committee must, by telegram, fax, hand delivery or overnight mail delivery, file a report with the TREF or the county election commission.

(Tenn. Code §2-10-211, Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-105)

Penalties

  • The TREF has the authority to impose civil penalties against a candidate for failing to file a statement on time and ignoring subsequent warnings about the required report.
  • The TREF may impose Class one civil penalties of $25 a day up to a maximum of $750 for the late filings of any campaign financial disclosure reports.
  • The TREF has the authority to impose civil penalties of up to $10,000 or 15% of the amount in controversy, whichever is greater, for a Class two offense involving both state and local elections. A Class two offense is the failure to file a report within 35 days of service of notice of a delinquent report or any other violation of the Campaign Financial Disclosure Act.

(Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-110)

TEXAS

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees, including specific and general-purpose committees.
  • Officeholders.
  • Persons.

Political committee means two or more persons acting in concert with a principal purpose of accepting political contributions or making political expenditures.

General-purpose committee means a political committee that has among its principal purposes that meets any one of the following descriptions:

  • A political committee that supports or opposes two or more candidates who are unidentified or who are seeking offices that are unknown.
  • A political committee that supports or opposes one or more unidentified measures. or
  • A political committee that assists two or more officeholders who are unidentified.

Specific-purpose committee means a political committee that does have among its principal purposes the:

  • Supporting or opposing one or more candidates, all of whom are identified and are seeking offices that are known; or measures, all of which are identified.
  • Assisting one or more officeholders, all of whom are identified. or
  • Supporting or opposing only one candidate who is unidentified or who is seeking an office that is unknown.

(Tex. Elec. Code § 251.001)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Political committees must register accepting political contributions totaling more than $500 or making or authorizing political expenditures totaling more than $500.
  • A general-purpose committee and a specific-purpose committee may not accept political contributions exceeding $920 and may not make or authorize political expenditures exceeding $920 without filing a campaign treasurer appointment with the Ethics Commission.
  • Candidates must file a campaign treasurer appointment when becoming a candidate even if they do not intend to accept campaign contributions or make campaign expenditures. A candidate may not knowingly accept a campaign contribution or make or authorize a campaign expenditure at a time when a campaign treasurer appointment for the candidate is not in effect.

(1 Tex. Admin. Code §§ 20.301 , 20.401, 20.201)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates do not have a reporting threshold; in other words, everything must be reported.
  • Political committees must report once the committee accepts political contributions more than $500 or makes or authorizes political expenditures more than $500 with the Texas Ethics Commission (TEC).
  • Officeholders must report once the officeholder has accepted political contributions more than $500 or makes political expenditures more than $500 with the TEC.
  • A person who makes one or more direct campaign expenditures (independent expenditures) more than $140 in an election must file a report with the TEC.

(Tex. Elec. Code § 254.095, 1 TAC § 22.6)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and officeholders must file the following reports:

  • Semiannual reports due in January and July.
  • An annual report of unexpended contributions due in January.
  • A 30-day pre-election report.
  • An eight-day pre-election report.
  • Runoff reports supporting candidates in primary runoff elections.

General purpose political committees must file the following reports:

  • Semiannual reports in January and July.
  • A 30-day pre-election report.
  • An eight-day pre-election report.
  • Daily pre-election reports of contributions.
  • Daily pre-election reports of direct expenditures.
  • Runoff reports in primary runoff elections.
  • During the special pre-election reporting period, a committee must report within 24 hours if it receives contributions from a person aggregating more than $5,000 during the reporting period; or makes more than $1,000 in direct campaign expenditures supporting or opposing a single candidate; or makes more than $15,000 in direct campaign expenditures supporting or opposing a group of candidates.

Specific-purpose political committees must file:

  • Semiannual reports in January and July.
  • A 30-day pre-election report.
  • An eight-day pre-election report
  • Daily pre-election reports of contributions.
  • Runoff reports in primary runoff elections.
  • During the special pre-election reporting period, a committee must report within 24 hours a contribution from a single source that totals more than $1,000 during the reporting report.

A person who makes one or more direct campaign expenditures in the aggregate over $100 in an election must file a report with the TEC by the next deadline applicable to a general purpose political committee.

(Tex. Elec. Code § 254.063, Tex. Elec. Code § 254.064)

Filing Method

All persons filing campaign finance reports with the TEC are required to file those reports electronically unless an exemption has been granted.

(Tex. Elec. Code §254.036)

Penalties

  • Late report filing carries a $500 civil penalty. If the two annual reports and the second pre-election report are late, the penalty is $500 for the first day the report is late and $100 for each additional day.
  • If the penalty is not paid before the 10th day after the date on which the warning is received, the person is liable for a civil penalty in an amount determined by the Ethics Commission, but not to exceed $10,000.
  • A person who knowingly fails to file a report is guilty of a Class C misdemeanor.
  • A candidate or officeholder who fails to report the required information is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor.
  • A person who violates the disclaimer requirements is liable to the state for a civil penalty in an amount not to exceed $4,000.

(Tex. Elec. Code § 254.042, Tex. Elec. Code § 254.041)

UTAH

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Officeholders.
  • Political parties
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Political issue committees (PIC).
  • Persons.

Political issues committee means an entity, or any group of individuals or entities within or outside the state, and its major purpose is to:

  • Solicit or receive donations from any other person, group or entity to assist in placing a ballot proposition on the ballot, assist in keeping a ballot proposition off the ballot or to advocate that a voter refrain from voting or vote for or vote against any ballot proposition.
  • Make expenditures to expressly advocate for any person to sign or refuse to sign a ballot proposition or petition.
  • Make expenditures to assist in qualifying or placing a ballot proposition on the ballot or to assist in keeping a ballot proposition off the ballot.

Person means individuals, business organizations, personal campaign committees, party committees, political action committees, political issues committees and labor organizations.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-101)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • State office candidates must file a written statement that: (i) informs the lieutenant governor that the state office candidate’s personal campaign committee has been selected; and (ii) provides the name and address of each member and the secretary of the committee. This must be done before the committee can receive any contributions or make any expenditures on behalf of a state office candidate.
  • PACs must file an initial statement of organization with the lieutenant governor's office seven days after the day on which the PAC either receives contributions or distributes expenditures totaling at least $750.
  • PICs must file a statement of organization with the lieutenant governor’s office by Jan. 10. If organized after Jan. 10, the PIC must file an initial statement of organization no later than seven days after the day on which the PIC either receives contributions or distributes expenditures totaling at least $750.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-202, Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-601, Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-801)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and officeholders do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.  
  • County political parties are required to file disclosure reports once the political party receives contributions or spends $750 in a calendar year with the Office of the Lieutenant Governor (OLG).
  • PACs are required to file disclosure reports once the PAC receives or spends $750 in contributions during a calendar year with the OLG.
  • PICs are required to file disclosure reports once the PIC receives or spends $750 in contributions during a calendar year with the OLG.
  • Persons who have made a total of at least $1,000 in independent expenditures during an election cycle must file an independent expenditure report within 31 days.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-1704)

Reporting Timelines

State and legislative candidates and officeholders must report in even-numbered years:

  • All contributions within 31 days of receiving the contribution.
  • All contributions within three business days of receiving the contribution within 30 days of the state convention, primary election or general election if the candidate or officeholder has an opponent.
  • Seven days before the state convention date.
  • Seven days before the primary.
  • On Sept. 30.
  • A week before the general election.
  • On Jan. 10 of the following year for a year-end report.

Political parties must file an annual report in January in odd-year reports.  In even-numbered years they must report:

  • Seven days before state convention date.
  • Seven days before the primary.
  • On Sept. 30.
  • A week before the general election.
  • On Jan. 10 of the following year for a year-end report.

PACs and PICs must report in even-numbered years:

  • All contributions within 31 days of receiving the contribution.
  • Seven days before state convention date.
  • Seven days before the primary.
  • On Sept. 30.
  • A week before the general election.
  • On Jan. 10 of the following year for a year-end report.

PACs and PICs must report in odd-numbered years:

  • On Sept. 30.
  • Seven days before the general election.
  • On Jan. 10.

Any person who is not a reporting entity and pays for an electioneering communication must file a report with the OLG within 24 hours of making the payment or entering into a contract to make the payment.

Any person who has made a total of at least $1,000 in independent expenditures during an election cycle must file an independent expenditure report within 31 days.

(Utah Code Ann. §§ 20A-11-201, 20A-11-203, 20A-11-204, 20A-11-1704)

Filing Method

Campaign financial disclosure reports must be filed electronically.

(Utah Code §20A-11-103)

Penalties

  • Persons or entities that fail to adhere to campaign finance and disclosure laws may face fines, criminal penalties and disqualification from the election.
  • For any candidate that fails to report, the lieutenant governor will impose a fine in an amount equal to:
  • 10% of the amount of the contribution if the state office candidate reports the contribution within 60 days after the day on which the time period ends. or
  • 20% of the amount of the contribution if the state office candidate fails to report the contribution within 60 days after the day on which the time period ends.
  • The OLG will fine a filing entity $100 for failing to file a financial statement by the filing deadline.
  • If a legislative office candidate fails to file an interim report, the OLG may send an electronic notice to the legislative office candidate and the political party. The lieutenant governor will disqualify a legislative office candidate if the legislative office candidate fails to file an interim report within 24 hours after the deadline for filing the report.
  • If any legislative office candidate or officeholder has failed to file a report, the OLG will, within five days of discovery of a violation or receipt of a written complaint, notify the legislative office candidate of the violation. If a legislative office candidate or officeholder fails to file or amend a summary report within seven days after receiving notice, each legislative office candidate or officeholder is guilty of a Class B misdemeanor. The OLG will report all violations to the attorney general. In addition to the criminal penalty, the OLG will impose a civil fine of $100 against a legislative office candidate or officeholder.
  • If an individual fail to report or to include required information, the OLG will impose a $100 fine.
  • Any person who is not an individual who failures to report or include required information, the lieutenant governor will impose a $1000 fine.

(Utah Code Ann. §§ 20A-11-201, 20A-11-305, 20A-11-1005, 20A-11-403, 20A-11-1706)

VERMONT

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Political parties.
  • Persons.

Political committee or political action committee means any formal or informal committee of two or more individuals or a corporation, labor organization, public interest group or other entity, not including a political party, that accepts contributions of $1,000 or more and makes expenditures of $1,000 or more in any two-year general election cycle for the purpose of supporting or opposing one or more candidates, influencing an election, or advocating a position on a public question in any election, and includes an independent expenditure-only political committee and a legislative leadership political committee.

Person means an individual, partnership, corporation, association, labor organization or any other organization or group of persons that is not a political committee or political party.

(17 V.S.A. § 2901)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Each candidate who has made expenditures or accepted contributions of $500 or more in an election cycle must register with the secretary of state within 10 days of reaching the $500 threshold or on the date that the next report is required of the candidate, whichever occurs first.
  • Each political committee must register with the secretary of state within 10 days of making expenditures or accepting contributions of $1,000 or more.
  • Each political party that has accepted contributions or made expenditures of $1,000 or more in any two-year general election cycle must register with the secretary of state within 10 days of reaching the $1,000 threshold.

(17 V.S.A. § 2921, 17 V.S.A. § 2922, 17 V.S.A. § 2923)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates who spend or raise $500 more during the two-year general election cycle must report with the secretary of state.
  • Political committees that spend or raise $1000 or more in any two-year general election cycle must file reports with the secretary of state.
  • Political parties that spend or raise $1,000 or more in any election cycle must file reports with the secretary of state.
  • Persons who make an expenditure for $500 or more for any one mass media activity must file reports with the secretary of state.
  • Political committees that spend $1,000 or more in an election cycle for the purpose of advocating a position on a public question must file reports with the secretary of state.
  • Any independent expenditure-only political committee that makes an expenditure for any one mass media activity totaling $5,000 or more must file reports with the secretary of state.

Reporting Timelines

  • Statewide candidates, candidates for the General Assembly, county candidates, political committees and political party reports must be filed on:
  • July 15 in an off-election year.

During election years, reports must be filed on:

  • March 15.
  • July 15.
  • Aug. 15.
  • Sept. 1.
  • Oct. 1.
  • Oct. 15.
  • The Friday before the election.
  • Two weeks after the election.
  • Dec. 15.
  • A candidate who accepts a monetary contribution in an amount over $2,000 within 10 days of a primary or general election must report the contribution to the secretary of state within 24 hours of receiving the contribution.
  • Local candidates who have raised or spent $500 or more must file campaign finance reports with the secretary of state 30 days before, 10 days before, four days before and two weeks after the local election. A final report is due within 40 days of the election.
  • PACs and parties that have raised or spent more than $1,000 to influence a local election or support candidates in a local election must file reports with the secretary of state on the same dates mentioned above.
  • Independent expenditure only political committee must file:
  • July 15 in an off-election year.

During election years, reports must be filed on:

  • March 15.
  • July 15.
  • Aug. 15.
  • Sept. 1.
  • Oct. 1.
  • Oct. 15.
  • The Friday before the election.
  • Two weeks after the election.
  • Dec. 15.

Any political committee which spends $1,000 or more for the purpose of advocating a position on a public question must file reports of its expenditures on the same dates mentioned above.

(17 V.S.A. § 2964, 17 V.S.A. § 2965, 17 V.S.A. § 2967)

Filing Method

Any person required to file a report with the secretary of state must file the report electronically.

(17 V.S.A. § 2961)

Penalties

  • A person who knowingly and intentionally violates the laws related to filing campaign finance reports will be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.
  • Violators of the state’s campaign finance laws will be subject to a civil penalty of up to $10,000 for each violation.
  • The attorney general and the state’s attorneys are given specific civil investigation authority if they have reason to believe any person has violated any provision of the campaign finance law.
  • In addition to the other penalties provided, a state’s attorney or the attorney general may institute any appropriate action, injunction or other proceeding to prevent, restrain, correct or abate any violation.

(17 V.S.A. § 2903, 17 V.S.A. § 2904)

VIRGINIA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means and includes any political action committee, political party committee, referendum committee or inaugural committee.

Person means any individual or corporation, partnership, business, labor organization, membership organization, association, cooperative or other like entity.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must file a statement of organization within 10 days of meeting any one of the following conditions:
  • Acceptance of a contribution.
  • Expenditure of any funds.
  • The payment of a filing fee for any party nomination method.
  • The filing of a candidate statement of qualification.
  • The appintment of a campaign treasurer, designation of a campaign committee or designation of a campaign depository.
  • In the case of a candidate for a town office in a town with a population of less than 25,000, acceptance of a contribution or expenditure of funds that brings the total amount of contributions accepted or funds expended to more than $25,000 in one election cycle.
  • Political committees that anticipate receiving contributions or making expenditures over $200 in a calendar year must file with the Virginia Board of Elections (SBE) a statement of organization within 10 days after its organization, or if later, within 10 days after the date on which it has information that causes the committee to anticipate it will receive contributions or make expenditures over $200.
  • Out-of-state political committees must submit a statement of organization on or before the date on which the committee makes contributions of $10,000 or more in the aggregate in a calendar year to candidate campaign committees or political committees registered with the SBE.
  • Any referendum committee must file a statement of organization within 10 days after its organization, or if later, within 10 days after the date on which it has information that causes the committee to anticipate it will receive contributions or make expenditures in excess of:
  • $10,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a statewide referendum.
  • $5,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a referendum being held in two or more counties and cities.
  • $1,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a referendum held in a single county or city.

(Va. Code Ann. §§ 24.2-947.1, 24.2-949.2, 24.2-950.2, 24.2-949.10, 24.2-951.1)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.  
  • Political committees that receive contributions or make expenditures more than $200 in a calendar year must report with the Board of Elections.
  • Any person, candidate campaign committee or political committee that makes independent expenditures, in the aggregate during an election cycle, of $1,000 or more for a statewide election or $200 or more for any other election must maintain records and report all independent expenditures made for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate.
  • A referendum committee must report to the SBE when the committee anticipates it will receive contributions or make expenditures more than:
  • $10,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a statewide referendum.
  • $5,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a referendum being held in two or more counties and cities.
  • $1,000 to advocate the passage or defeat of a referendum held in a single county or city.

(Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-945.2)

Reporting Timelines

Any candidate for any office to be filled at a November general election must file:

  • In a nonelection year, not later than July 15 for the period Jan. 1 through June 30.
  • Following a nonelection year, not later than Jan. 15 for the period July 1 through Dec. 31.
  • In an election year:
  • Not later than Apr. 15 for the period Jan. 1 through March 31.
  • Not later than the eighth day before the primary date.
  • Not later than July 15.
  • Not later than Sept. 15.
  • Not later than Oct. 15.
  • No later than the eighth day before the November election.
  • Not later than the 30th day after the November election date.
  • Not later than Jan. 15 in the following year.
  • Any single contribution of $5,000 or more for a statewide office, $1,000 or more for the general assembly, or $500 or more for any other office, on and after the 11th day preceding an election and before Election Day, should be reported to the BOE within 24 hours.
  • If a special election is held on a date other than a regularly scheduled general election, candidates must file:
  • A report not later than the eighth day before the special election date.
  • A postelection report no later than the 30th day after the election and prior to taking office.
  • A postelection report not later than Jan. 15 and July 15 each year until a final report is filed.

Political committees and political parties must file:

  • Quarterly reports on Apr. 15, July 15, Oct. 15 and Jan. 15.
  • Any single contribution or loan of $10,000 or more received at any time during the calendar year must be reported within three business days of receipt.

Any person or political committee that makes independent expenditures must report all independent expenditures made for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate to the SBE. Independent expenditure reports are due no later than 24 hours after the expenditure has been made or when the expenditure is disseminated, whichever is first.  

A referendum committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee.

(Va. Code Ann. §§ 24.2-947.6, 24.2-947.824.2-947.7, 24.2-949.6, 24.2-949.7, 24.2-950.6)

Filing Method

  • Candidates for General Assembly and local or constitutional offices must file their campaign finance reports electronically with the Board of Elections.
  • Political committees that accept contributions or makes expenditures over $10,000 in any calendar year, or that accepted contributions or made expenditures over $10,000 in the previous calendar year, must file its reports electronically.
  • Political parties may submit reports in typed, printed or legibly hand printed format or electronically.
  • Out-of-state political committees must file electronically with the Board of Elections.

(Va. Code Ann. §§ 24.2-947.5, 24.2-946.1, 24.2-949.8, 24.2-950.4, 24.2-949.11)

Penalties

  • Failure to file a statement of organization carries a civil penalty not to exceed $500.
  • Failure to file a required report carries a civil penalty not to exceed $500.
  • Failure to file a report of any large pre-election contribution is a rebuttable presumption that the violation was willful and is a Class one misdemeanor.
  • An incomplete report violation carries a civil penalty not to exceed $500 unless a greater penalty is imposed. The civil penalty will not exceed $500 unless the total of the filer’s reportable contributions or the total of the filer’s reportable expenditures is $10,000 or more.
  • Any candidate for statewide office, who fails to file any report in a timely manner or files an incomplete report, and their campaign treasurer, may be assessed a civil penalty.
  • Acceptance of contributions of $10,000 or more in the aggregate in any calendar year from an unregistered federal political action committee or out-of-state political committee will result in a civil penalty equal to the amount of the contributions made to a candidate campaign committee or political committee.
  • Any sponsor violating the political advertising disclosure requirements will be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000; or in the case of a violation occurring within 14 days prior to or on Election Day, a civil penalty not to exceed $2,500. In the case of a willful violation, the sponsor will be guilty of a Class one misdemeanor.

(Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-953.1, Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-953.2, Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-953.3 Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-953.4, Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-953.5)

WASHINGTON

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Incidental committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any person, except a candidate, having the expectation of receiving contributions or making expenditures in support of, or opposition to, any candidate or ballot proposition.

Incidental committee means any nonprofit organization not otherwise defined as a political committee but that may incidentally make a contribution or an expenditure in excess of the reporting thresholds directly or through a political committee.

Person includes an individual, partnership, joint venture, public or private corporation, association, federal, state or local governmental entity or agency, candidate, committee, political committee, political party, executive committee or any other organization or group of persons, however organized.

(WAC §§ 390-16-001, 390-16-013, Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.005)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must register within two weeks of becoming a candidate.
  • Political committees must file a statement of organization within two weeks after organization or within two weeks after the date the committee first has the expectation of receiving contributions or making expenditures in any election campaign, whichever is earlier. If a committee organizes within three weeks of an election and will be active in that election, it must register within three business days of organizing.
  • Incidental committees must file a statement of organization within two weeks after the date the committee first has the expectation of making any expenditures aggregating at least $25,000 in a calendar year in any election campaign, or to a political committee is required to disclose a payment received.

(WAC § 390-16-012, Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) §§ 42.17A.205, 42.17A.005)

Reporting Thresholds

  • A candidate or political committee who raises and spends up to $5,000 is required to file reports with the Public Disclosure Commission (PDC).
  • An incidental committee that received a payment that would change its top 10 sources of payments or made a contribution to a candidate or political committee of more than $200 must file a report with the PDC.
  • Any persons making an independent expenditure, of $100 or more, that supports or opposes a candidate or ballot measure must file a report with the PDC. Any persons making electioneering communications more than $1,000 that supports or opposes a candidate or ballot measure must file a report with the PDC.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.225, WAC § 390-16-105, Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.235)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates, political committees and incidental committees must file reports at the following intervals:

  • Monthly, if:
  • The committee either received more than $200 in contributions or made more than $200 in expenditures.
  • The candidate does not appear on the primary ballot, it still files monthly reports through the end of August.
  • On the 21st day and the seventh day immediately preceding the election.
  • On the 10th day of the first full month after the election.

During the week before the primary election and the three weeks before the general election, a candidate must file a special report within 48 hours of receiving $1,000 or more from a single source in the aggregate during the special reporting period.

Continuing political committees must file a report on the 10th day of each month detailing expenditures made and contributions received for the preceding calendar month. This report need only be filed if either the total contributions received or total expenditures made since the last such report exceed $200.

An out-of-state political committee that makes an expenditure supporting or opposing a Washington state candidate or political committee must filed a statement no later than the 10th day of the month following any month in which a contribution or other expenditure is made.

A ballot measure committee has the same reporting requirements as any other political committee.

Any person who makes independent expenditures totaling $100 or more supporting or opposing a candidate or ballot measure must submit a report to the PDC within five days and then:

  • On the 21st day and the seventh day preceding the election.
  • On the 10th day of the first month after the election.
  • On the 10th day of each month in which no other reports are required to be filed. Further reports will only be filed if the reporting person has made an independent expenditure since the date of the last previous report filed.

The sponsor of political advertising must file a report to the PDC within 24 hours of, or on the first working day after, the date the political advertising is first published, mailed or otherwise presented to the public, if the political advertising:

  • Is published, mailed or otherwise presented to the public within 21 days of an election; and
  • Qualifies as an independent expenditure with a fair market value or actual cost of one $1,000 or more, for political advertising supporting or opposing a candidate or a ballot proposition.

All electioneering communications must be reported within 24 hours, whether sponsored by a candidate, political committee or person.

  • The sponsor of an electioneering communication must report within 24 hours of, or on the first working day after, the date the electioneering communication is broadcast, transmitted, mailed, erected, distributed, digitally or otherwise or otherwise published.
  • The sponsor of political advertising must file a report within 24 hours of, or on the first working day after, the date the political advertising is first published, mailed or otherwise presented to the public, if the political advertising:
  • Is published, mailed or otherwise presented to the public within 21 days of an election; and
  • Qualifies as an independent expenditure with a fair market value or actual cost of one $1,000 or more, for political advertising supporting or opposing a candidate; or has a fair market value or actual cost of $1,000 or more, for political advertising supporting or opposing a ballot proposition.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) §§ 42.17A.225, 42.17A.235, 42.17A.265, 42.17A.250, 42.17A.260, WAC § 390-16-105)

Filing Method

All persons required to file reports must file them electronically. The PDC may make exceptions on a case-by-case basis for persons who lack the technological ability to file reports electronically.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.055)

Penalties

  • A civil penalty up to $10,000 may be assessed per violation upon concluding that someone has violated the public disclosure law and violations may be referred to the attorney general.
  • A person who fails to file a properly completed statement or report within the time required may be subject to a civil penalty of $10 per day for each day each delinquency continues. 
  • A person who fails to report a contribution or expenditure may be subject to a civil penalty equivalent to the amount not reported as required.
  • A person who, with actual malice, violates the public disclosure law is guilty of a misdemeanor.
  • A person who, within a five-year period, with actual malice, violates three or more provisions of the public disclosure law is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
  • A person who, with actual malice, procures or offers any false or forged document to be filed, registered or recorded is guilty of a Class C felony.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.750, Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.750, Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.750)

WEST VIRGINIA

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Pre-candidates.
  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any candidate committee, political action committee or political party committee.

Person means an individual, corporation, partnership, committee, association and any other organization or group of individuals.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-1a)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Political committees must register before receiving or spending any funds for political purposes.
  • Pre-candidacy candidates must file a pre-candidacy form before the candidate starts to raise and spend money for a possible candidacy.
  • Candidates for state office must register within 10 days of filing as a candidate.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Independent expenditures in an aggregate over $1,000 during a calendar year must file a report.
  • A total of $5,000 or more for the direct costs of purchasing, producing or disseminating electioneering communications during any calendar year. or
  • A total of $1,000 or more on or after the 15th day but more than 12 hours before the day of any election for the direct costs of purchasing, producing or disseminating electioneering communications during any calendar year must, within 24 hours of each disclosure date, file with the secretary of state.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-2, § 3-8-2b)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates and political committees must file:

  • Quarterly reports on Apr. 1, July 1, Oct. 1, Jan. 1.
  • Primary election reports on the 15th day preceding the primary election. Only candidates file this report.
  • General election reports on the15th day preceding the general election. Only candidates file this report.

Candidates and political committees are required to continue filing quarterly reports until a zero balance or a final report has been filed.

Pre-candidates must file quarterly reports on Apr. 1, July 1, Oct. 1 and Jan. 1.

Any person or political committee that makes or contracts to make independent expenditures aggregating $5,000 or more for any statewide, legislative or multicounty judicial candidate or $500 or more for any county office candidate, after the 15th day, but more than 12 hours, before the date of an election must file a report within 24 hours.

A person, including a political committee, who makes or contracts to make independent expenditures aggregating $10,000 or more at any time, up to and including the 15th day before the date of an election, must file a report within 48 hours.

Any person who files a report must file an additional report within 48 hours after each time the person makes or contracts to make independent expenditures aggregating an additional $10,000 with respect to the same election.

Every person who has spent a total of $5,000 or more for the purchasing, producing or disseminating electioneering communications during any calendar year; or a total of $1,000 or more on or after the 15th day but more than 12 hours before the day of any election for the purchasing, producing or disseminating electioneering communications during any calendar year must, within 24 hours of each disclosure date, file a report.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-5)

Filing Method

Reports may be filed electronically or by papers. The following statements or reports must be filed electronically:

  • Financial statements filed by or on behalf of candidates for governor, secretary of state, attorney general, auditor, treasurer, commissioner of agriculture, state senate, house of delegates, supreme court of appeals, circuit judge or family court judge.
  • Financial statements filed by political committees.
  • Electioneering communication reports.
  • Independent expenditure reports.

(W.Va. Code, 3-8-5b)

Penalties

  • Any person, candidate or treasurer of a political committee who fails to file a sworn, itemized statement on time or who willfully files a grossly incomplete or grossly inaccurate statement is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, will e fined not less than $500 or confined in jail for not more than one year, or both.
  • Any person who willfully fails to comply with independent expenditure reporting is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, will be fined not less than $500, or confined in jail for not more than one year, or both fined and confined.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-7, W. Va. Code § 3-8-2)

WISCONSIN

State flag

Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Political parties.
  • Independent expenditure committees.
  • Referendum committees.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidates must file a registration statement as soon as practicable after the individual qualifies as a candidate.
  • Political parties upon inception and prior to making or accepting any contribution, making any disbursement, or incurring any obligation, must file a registration statement.
  • PAC and independent expenditure committees (when the committee’s major purpose is express advocacy) must file a registration statement no later than the 10th business day after either making or accepting contributions, disbursements or incurring obligations to support or oppose a candidate in an aggregate amount more than $2,500. Major purpose is when more than 50% of the committee’s spending is on independent expenditures or contributions.
  • Referendum committees that make or accept contributions, make disbursements or incur obligations for the purpose of influencing a particular vote at a referendum in a calendar year in an aggregate amount over $10,000 will file a registration statement no later than the 10th business day after meeting threshold.

(Wis. Stat. §§ 11.0202, 11.0302, 11.0502, 11.0602, 11.0802)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political parties do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Political action committees and independent expenditure committees that make or accept contributions, disbursements or incur obligations to support or oppose a candidate in an aggregate amount more than $2,500 needs to file a report with the Wisconsin Ethics Commission (WEC).
  • Referendum committees that make expenditures or accept contributions more than $10,000 in a calendar year must file a report with the WEC.

Reporting Timelines

General election candidates must file:

  • January continuing report.
  • July continuing report.
  • Fall pre-primary report.
  • September report.
  • Fall pre-election report.
  • Any contributions of $1,000 or more received by a candidate committee from a single contributor within 15 days prior to an election and are not included in the pre-primary or pre-election report, must report the contribution within 72 hours of receipt. The information should also be included in the committee’s next regular report.

PACS when participating in an election must file:

  • January continuing report.
  • July continuing report.
  • September report.

PACS not participating in an election must file:

  • January continuing report.
  • July continuing report.

Local candidate committees must file:

  • January continuing report.
  • Spring pre-primary report.
  • Spring pre-election report.
  • July continuing report.
  • Any contributions of $1,000 or more cumulatively received by a candidate committee from a single contributor later than 15 days prior to an election and are not included in the pre-primary or pre-election report, must report within 72 hours of receipt. The information should also be included in the committee’s next regular report.

An independent expenditure committee that makes or accepts contributions, makes disbursements or incurs obligations to support or oppose one or more candidates for office at a spring primary or a candidate at a special primary held to nominate nonpartisan candidates to be voted for at a special election held to fill a vacancy in one or more of the nonpartisan state or local offices voted for at the spring election, or to support or oppose other committees engaging in such activities, must:

  • File a preprimary report no earlier than 14 days and no later than eight days preceding the primary. If a candidate for a nonpartisan state office at an election is not required to participate in a spring primary, the independent expenditure committee must file a preprimary report.
  • File a pre-election report no earlier than 14 days and no later than eight days preceding the election.
  • In each year of an election cycle, file a report on the 15th day of January and July.

An independent expenditure committee that makes or accepts contributions, makes disbursements or incurs obligations to support or oppose one or more candidates for office at a spring election or a candidate at a special election held to fill a vacancy, must:

  • File a pre-election report no earlier than 14 days and no later than eight days preceding the election.
  • In each year of an election cycle, file a report on the 15th day of January and July.
  • File a postelection report no earlier than 23 days and no later than 45 days after each special election.

An independent expenditure committee that makes or accepts contributions, makes disbursements or incurs obligations to support or oppose one or more candidates for office at a partisan primary or a candidate at a special primary held to nominate candidates to be voted for at a special election held to fill a vacancy, must:

  • File a preprimary report no earlier than 14 days and no later than eight days preceding the primary.
  • File a pre-election report no earlier than 14 days and no later than eight days preceding the election.
  • In an odd-numbered year, file a report on the 15th day of January and July.
  • In an even-numbered year, file a report on the 15th day of January and July, and on the fourth Tuesday in September.

An independent expenditure committee that makes or accepts contributions, makes disbursements or incurs obligations to support or oppose one or more candidates for office at a general election or a candidate at a special election held to fill a vacancy in one or more of the state or local offices voted for at the general election, must:

  • File a pre-election report no earlier than 14 days and no later than eight days preceding the election.
  • In an odd-numbered year, file a report on the 15th day of January and July.
  • In an even-numbered year, file a report on the 15th day of January and July, and on the 4th Tuesday in September.
  • File a post-election report no earlier than 23 days and no later than 45 days after each special election.

Independent expenditure committees that spend more than $2,500 on express advocacy in the 60 days before a primary or election must also file a special report documenting their expenditures within 72 hours of making the disbursement.

Referendum committees accepting contributions and making disbursements to support or oppose a referendum need to file pre-primary and pre-election reports for periods where the referendum appears on the ballot. Committees that have not accepted contributions or made disbursements to support or oppose a referendum on the ballot do not need to file the pre-primary or pre-election reports.

(Wis. Stat. § 11.0103, Wis. Stat. § 11.0204)

Filing Method

  • Candidates for state offices file electronically with the Wisconsin Ethics Commission (WEC).
  • Candidates for local offices file on paper with their local filing office.
  • Committees file electronically with the WEC.

Penalties

  • Any person who violates the campaign finance laws may be required to forfeit not more than $500 for each violation.
  • Any person who is delinquent in filing a report may be required to forfeit not more than $50 or 1 % of the annual salary of the office for which the candidate is being supported or opposed, whichever is greater, for each day of delinquency.
  • Whoever intentionally violates the campaign finance laws is guilty of a Class I felony if the intentional violation does not involve a specific figure or if the intentional violation concerns a figure which exceeds $100 in amount or value.
  • Whoever intentionally violates any of the following may be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than six months or both:
  • Any violation concerns a specific amount or value not exceeding $100.
  • Filing false reports.
  • Making unlawful obligations or disbursements.
  • Violating the disclaimer requirements.
  • Other violations of the campaign finance law, not specified, is a Class I felony.

(Wis. Stat. § 11.1400, Wis. Stat. § 11.1401)

WYOMING

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate committees.
  • Political action committees.
  • Political parties.
  • Organizations.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • A political action committee and a candidate’s campaign committee, except those formed under federal law, must file a statement of formation within 10 days after formation.
  • Any organization that receives contributions or expends funds totaling in aggregate more than $1,000 for the purpose of causing independent expenditures or electioneering communications to be made should file a statement of formation for the purpose of filing campaign reports.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-101, Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-10)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, PACs and political parties do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.  
  • Any organization that receives contributions or expends funds totaling in aggregate more than $1,000 for the purpose of causing independent expenditures or electioneering communications must file a report with the secretary of state.

Reporting Timelines

Candidates running for office must file:

  • Pre-primary report (contributions only).
  • Primary report.
  • Pre-general report (contributions only).
  • General report.

Candidates not running for office must file:

  • Annual report.
  • Pre-primary report (contributions only).
  • Pre-general report (contributions only).

Candidate committees supporting candidate running for office must file:

  • Pre-primary report (contributions only).
  • Primary report.
  • Pre-general report (contributions only).
  • General report.

Candidate committees supporting candidate not running for office must file:

  • Annual report.
  • Pre-primary (contributions).
  • Pre-general (contributions).

PACs which are supporting or opposing candidates must file:

  • Pre-primary report (contributions only).
  • Primary report.
  • Pre-general report (contributions only).
  • General report.

PACs which are supporting or opposing a ballot issue must file:

  • Annual report.
  • January-September report.
  • Pre-general report (contributions only).
  • General report.

Organizations which are supporting or opposing a statewide ballot initiative or referendum petition drive must file:

  • Annual report.
  • January-September report.
  • Pre-general report (contributions only).
  • General report.

Political Parties file two-year reports.

PACs and candidate’s campaign committees must file an itemized statement of contributions at least seven days but not more than 14 days before any primary, general or special election. Any contribution received after the statement has been filed, through the day of the election, must be filed as an amendment to the statement within 10 days after the election.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-106)

Filing Method

Candidates and candidate committees for governor, secretary of state, state auditor, state treasurer, state superintendent of public instruction, state legislature, supreme court justice, district and circuit court judges standing for retention, state PACs, organizations and political parties must file disclosure reports electronically.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-107)

Penalties

  • Failure to file the report within the time required will subject the person to the following civil penalties:
  • Up to $500 per day beginning on the date of the final order and ending when the report is filed for a failure to file a report with the secretary of state.
  • $200 for a failure to file a report with the county clerk.
  • The candidate will also be notified by mail that they will have 21 days to file the delinquent report or be subject to civil penalties. If a late filer fails to file within the 21-day window, the appropriate filing office or county attorney, will issue a final order imposing a civil penalty.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-108)

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Independent expenditure committees .
  • Persons.

Political committee means any committee, club, association, organization or other group of individuals that is:

  • Organized for the purpose of promoting or opposing:
  • The election of a person to public office.
  • A political party.
  • Any initiative, referendum or recall.
  • An inaugural, transition or legal defense committee.
  • Controlled by or coordinated with any public official or agent of a public official.

Person means an individual, partnership, committee, corporation, labor organization and any other organization.

(D.C. Code § 1-1161.01)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • All political committees, PACs and independent expenditure committees must register with the Director of Campaign Finance (DCF) and file a statement of organization form within 10 days of organization or designation by a candidate on the statement of candidacy form.
  • An individual must file a statement of candidacy or statement of registration as a candidate within five days of receiving or making a campaign contribution or expenditure.

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Political committees, political action committees and independent expenditure committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Any person other than a political committee, political action committee or independent expenditure committee that makes one or more independent expenditures in aggregate of $1,000 or more within a calendar year must file a report with the DCF.

Reporting Timelines

All candidates and political committees must file disclosure reports on the following dates:

  • In an election year, on Jan. 31, March 10, June 10, Aug. 10, Oct. 10, Dec. 10 and the eighth day next preceding the date of any election, in any year in which the candidate seeks office and the committee supports a candidate for office.
  • In election and non-election years, on Jan. 31 and July 31; if a committee no later than Jan. 31 declares its intention to not support a candidate during an election year, it does not need to report.

PACs and independent expenditure committees must file disclosure reports on the following dates:

  • In an election year, reports should be file on Jan. 31, March 10, June 10, Aug. 10, Oct. 10, Dec. 10 and eight days preceding an election.
  • In an election year, when a committee has no activity, reports should be filed on Jan. 31 and July 31.
  • In a non-election year, reports should be filed on July 31.

Any person making an independent expenditure of $50 or more must be reported. Reports must be filed on the independent expenditure committee schedule.

If the independent expenditure exceeds $1,000 in a 2-week period, a report must be filed within 14 days of the independent expenditure.

(D.C. Code Mun. Regs. tit. 3 §§ 3017.1, 3000, D.C. Code § 1-1163.13)

Filing Method

All reports must be filed electronically with the Office of Campaign Finance.

(D.C. Code Mun. Regs. tit. 3 §3006)

Penalties

  • Any person or committee that fails, neglects or omits to file any report or document, or who omits or incorrectly states any of the information may be assessed a civil penalty of not more than $4,000 for the first offense and not more than $10,000 for the second and each subsequent offense.
  • A person may be assessed a civil penalty by the DCF not to exceed $4,000, or three times the amount of the unlawful contribution, gift or expenditure, whichever amount is greater.
  • A person who aids, abets or participates in a campaign finance violation will be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000.

(D.C. Code § 1-1163.35)

PUERTO RICO

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Campaign committees.
  • Political action committees (PAC).
  • Political parties.
  • Persons.

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every person, group or organization must register but may have reporting responsibilities.

Every PAC, campaign committee and authorized candidate committee must present its statement of organization with the Office of the Election Comptroller within 10 business days following its designation.

Any candidate who raises or expends over $500 from their own money, must designate a campaign committee within 10 business days.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 626)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates, candidate committees, PACs and political parties do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.
  • Any person or committee making independent expenditures more than $1,000 must file a report with the Office of the Election Comptroller (OEC).

Reporting Timelines:

Candidates and PACs must file quarterly reports.

Parties and candidates for governor must file contribution and expenditure reports with the OEC on a monthly basis before the 15th day of the month starting on Oct. 1 of the year prior to the general election.

Any contribution or gift over $1,000 received after the Oct. 31 report and before the election must be reported to the OEC within 24 hours after receiving it.

Any person or PAC that contracts, within 20 days or less before the election, to make independent expenditures, in the aggregate, over $1,000 must file a report within 24 hours. This report is separate and independent from any other required reports.

Any person or PAC that contracts, at any time on or before the 20th day before the election, to make independent expenditures, in the aggregate, over $5,000 must file a report within 48 hours. This report is separate and independent from any other required reports.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 627, 627b)

Filing Method

Campaign disclosure reports must be filed electronically. There is an exemption for those persons or committees that lack the capacity to file the reports electronically.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 627j, 16 L.P.R.A. § 627k)

Penalties

  • Any person or committee, that “knowingly, obstinately and stubbornly” fails to file reports will be guilty of a misdemeanor and be subject to administrative fines. The criminal action for this misdemeanor is up to five years.
  • Any person who deliberately, willingly and knowingly files or signs a false report of contributions received and expenditures made will be guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for a term between one and three years. The criminal action for this felony is up to five years.
  • Any violation of the Political Campaign Financing Oversight Act that is not classified as an offense will constitute a civil violation and will entail an administrative fine to be imposed by the OEC. Fines will range up to $2,500 for the first violation and up to $5,000 for subsequent violations. In the case of juridical persons and political action committees, the fines will range up to $15,000 for the first violation and up to $30,000 for subsequent violations.

(16 L.P.R.A. §§ 633d, 663e, 633f)

GUAM

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidate.
  • Committee.
  • Political party.

Committee means:

  • Any person who accepts a contribution or makes an expenditure for or against any individual candidate or group of candidates, person seeking nomination for election, or election to office, or political party, with the authorization of the candidate, person or political party, or who accepts a contribution or makes an expenditure for or against any question or issue which is to appear on the ballot at the next applicable election.
  • Any person who raises or holds money or anything of value and who subsequently contributes the money or thing of value to, or make expenditures on behalf of an individual candidate, group of candidates, person or political party; provided, that the term committee shall not include any person making a contribution or expenditure of his or her own funds or something of value originally acquired for his or her own use.

(3 GCA Section 17101)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the territory.

Each candidate, committee and political party must file an organizational report no later than the earliest of the following applicable days:

  • On or before the day of filing for nomination or election.
  • By the 10th day after receiving any contributions for the next campaign in an aggregate amount of more than $250 or the making or incurring of any expenditure for the next campaign over$250.

(3 GCA Section 17106)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and committees do not have a reporting threshold; everything must be reported.  

Reporting Timelines

  • Preliminary primary report is due no later than the 10th day prior to each election or primary.
  • Each candidate, whether or not successful in a primary or special primary election, or authorized person in the case of a party, or campaign treasurer in the case of a committee, must file a final primary report not later than the 10th day after the primary or special primary election.
  • Each candidate or committee must file a final general report with the Guam Election Commission (GEC) not later than the 20th day after a general or special election.

(3 GCA Section 17116, 3 GCA Section 17118)

Filing Method

  • All reports required to be filed with the GEC on forms provided by the Election Commission. 
  • Candidates, political parties, political action committees and campaign committees may obtain the organizational report forms from GEC. A certified hard copy of organizational reports must be filed, along with an electronic copy.
  • All reports must be certified by the candidate and the treasurer (or deputy treasurer).
  • All certifications must be notarized.

Penalties

  • Any person willfully violating any provision of the Election Campaign Contribution and Expenditures chapter must be punishable in the manner prescribed as follows:
  • If a person, that person will be guilty of a misdemeanor and be subject to fines and/or the penalties specified.
  • If a corporation, organization or association, it will be punishable by a fine not exceeding $10,000 per offense and the penalties specified.
  • Whenever a corporation, organization or association violates this Chapter, the violation must be deemed to be also that of the individual directors, officers or agents of the corporation, organization or association who have knowingly authorized, ordered or participated in any of the acts constituting the violation.
  • Any person may sue for injunctive relief to compel compliance with the Chapter.
  • Complaints and investigations: against any person will be filed with the GEC. The GEC will give notice of receipt of the complaint together with a copy of the complaint to the person cited and shall afford him or her an opportunity to address or otherwise respond to the complaint.

(3 GCA Section 17122, 3 GCA Section 17121)

NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS

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Not available

AMERICAN SAMOA

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Not available

VIRGIN ISLANDS

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Below we provide information on:

  • Who needs to disclose information on election-related transactions.
  • Who needs to register with the state.
  • Reporting thresholds.
  • Reporting timelines.
  • Filing methods.
  • Penalties.

For information on the definition and what needs to be reported for contributions, expenditures, independent expenditures, electioneering communications and ballot measure financing, please see the appropriate tabs.

Who Needs to Disclose

  • Candidates.
  • Political committees.
  • Persons.

Political committee means any committee, club, association or other group of persons that receives contributions or makes expenditures during any calendar year in an aggregate amount more than $1,000.

Person means an individual, partnership, committee, association, corporation, labor organization or any other organization or group of persons.

(18 V.I.C. § 902)

Who Needs to Register with the State

Not every organization that has reporting responsibilities must be registered with the state.

  • Candidate committees and political committees that anticipate receiving contributions or making expenditures during the calendar year in an aggregate amount exceeding $500 must file with the Office of Supervisor of Elections (OSE) a statement of organization within 10 days after its organization or, if later, within 10 days after receipt of information causing the committee to anticipate it will receive contributions or make expenditures over $500.

(18 V.I.C. § 904)

Reporting Thresholds

  • Candidates and political committees must file a report not later than 10 days after each six-month period in which contributions were received or expenditures made in amounts greater than $500.

(18 V.I.C. § 904)

Reporting Timelines

Candidates must file:

  • Semiannual reports in January and June.
  • Election reports for any primary, general, special or runoff election.

Any candidate, or any person authorized to receive contributions on behalf of a candidate, which receives a contribution of $500 or more after the 30th day preceding an election and before the election, must report such contribution to the OSE within 48 hours after its receipt.

Political committees must file:

  • Semiannual reports in January and June.
  • Election reports for any primary, general, special or runoff election.
  • Not later than 10 days after each six-month period in which contributions were received or expenditures made in amounts greater than $500.
  • Not later than 10 days before the election. The report will be for a reporting period commencing the day after the close of the preceding reporting period and must close on the 30th day preceding the election.
  • Not later than 30 days after the election. The report will be for a reporting period commencing the day after the close of the preceding reporting period and must close on the 20th day after the election.

Any political committee which receives a contribution of $500 or more after the 30th day preceding an election and before the election, must report the contribution within 48 hours after its receipt.

Every person, independent of an organized committee, who makes or receives contributions or makes expenditures in an aggregate amount of over $500 during a calendar year for the express purpose of advocating the election or defeat of a candidate must file reports during the same reporting periods as f political committees.

(18 V.I.C. § 905, 18 V.I.C. § 906)

Filing Method

  • Campaign disclosure forms should be typed; printing in ink is also acceptable as long as the forms are legible.
  • Computerized forms are acceptable as long as they are in the same format and style as the forms prescribed by the OSE.
  • All reports must be on the forms prescribed by the OSE.

Penalties

  • Any person who knowingly and willfully violates the state’s disclosure and campaign contributions laws will be fined not more than $5,000 or three times the amount of any contribution or expenditure involved in such violation, whichever is greater, or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.
  • Any person who believes a violation of the disclosure and campaign contributions laws has occurred may file a complaint with the Supervisor of Elections.
  • If the Supervisor of Elections determines that there is reasonable cause to believe that a person has committed or is about to commit a violation, the Supervisor may endeavor to bring about voluntary compliance by informal methods of conference, conciliation and persuasion. If the OSE is unable to correct or prevent any such violation, the OSE may:
  • Institute a civil action for relief, including a permanent or temporary injunction, restraining order or other appropriate order; and
  • Institute a civil penalty which does not exceed the greater of $5,000 or an amount equal to twice the amount of any contributions or expenditures involved in such violation, in a court of competent jurisdiction.

(18 V.I.C. § 910, 911)

ALABAMA

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Alabama does not define independent expenditures. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

ALASKA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that is made without the direct or indirect consultation or cooperation with, or at the suggestion or the request of, or with the prior consent of, a candidate, a candidate’s campaign treasurer or deputy campaign treasurer, or another person acting as a principal or agent of the candidate.

(Alaska Stat. § 15.13.400)

What Needs to be Reported

Every group and nongroup entities making an independent expenditure must make a full report of expenditures made and contributions received to the Alaska Public Offices Commission. Donor disclosure is required for independent expenditures. The report must contain:

  • The name, address, principal occupation and employer of the individual filing the report.
  • An itemized list of all expenditures made, incurred or authorized by the person.
  • The name of the candidate or the title of the ballot proposition or question supported or opposed by each expenditure and whether the expenditure is made to support or oppose the candidate or ballot proposition or question.
  • The name and address of each officer and director, when applicable.
  • The aggregate amount of all contributions made to the person, if any, for the purpose of influencing the outcome of an election. In addition, all contributions must disclose the date of the contribution and amount contributed by each contributor.
  • If contribution is from an individual, the report must disclose the name and address of the contributor and, for contributions in excess of $50 in the aggregate during a calendar year, the name, address, principal occupation and employer of the contributor.
  • If contribution is not from an individual, the report must disclose the name and address of the contributor and the name and address of each officer and director of the contributor.

(Alaska Stat. §§ 15.13.040, 15.13.110, 2 Alaska Admin. Code 50.321)

ARIZONA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person, other than a candidate committee, that complies with both of the following:

  • Expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate.
  • Is not made in cooperation or consultation with or at the request or suggestion of the candidate or the candidate’s agent.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 16-901)

What Needs to be Reported

A person, PAC or other entity (e.g., a corporation, limited liability company, labor organization, partnership, trust, association and organization) that makes independent expenditures in excess of $1,000 during a reporting period must file an expenditure report. Expenditure reports must identify:

  • The candidate or ballot measure supported or opposed.
  • Office sought by the candidate, if any.
  • Election date.
  • Mode of advertising.
  • First date of publication.
  • Display, delivery or broadcast of the advertisement.
  • Any contribution from in-state individuals more than $100 and any contribution from out of state individuals must disclose the identification of the contributor’s, including occupation and employer. This applies only to PACs.
  • No donor disclosure required for persons or other entities.

(Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 16-926)

ARKANSAS

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure which is not a contribution and:

  • Expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate for office.
  • Is made without arrangement, cooperation or consultation between a candidate or an authorized committee or agent of the candidate and the person making the expenditure or an authorized agent of that person.
  • Is not made in concert with or at the request or suggestion of a candidate or an authorized committee or agent of the candidate.

(Ark. Code Ann. § 7-6-201)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person or independent expenditure committee that makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $500 in a calendar year must file reports with the secretary of state. The report must include:

  • The name, address, telephone number, principal place of business, employer and occupation of any individual making an independent expenditure.
  • The name, address, employer and occupation of any officers of any committee making an independent expenditure.
  • The principal name, address and the name, address, employer and occupation of its officers of any entity making an independent expenditure.
  • The total amount of contributions received, with loans stated separately, and the total amount of expenditures made during the filing periods, and the cumulative amount of those totals.
  • The name and address of each person who made a contribution or contributions that in the aggregate exceeded $50.
  • The contributor's principal place of business, employer, occupation, the amount contributed, the date the contribution was accepted by the committee, and the aggregate amount contributed for each election.
  • The name and address of each person who contributed a nonmoney item, together with a description of the item, the date of receipt and the value, not including volunteer service by individuals.
  • An itemization of all single expenditures made which exceed $100, including the amount of the expenditure, the name and address of any person to whom the expenditure was made and the date the expenditure was made.
  • A list of all paid workers and the amount the workers were paid.
  • A list of all expenditures by categories.
  • The total amount of all nonitemized expenditures made during the filing period.
  • The current balance of committee funds.

(Ark. Code Ann. § 7-6-220)

CALIFORNIA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure made by any person, including a payment of public money by a state or local governmental agency, in connection with a communication which expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or the qualification, passage or defeat of a clearly identified measure or taken as a whole and in context, unambiguously urges a particular result in an election but which is not made to or at the behest of the affected candidate or committee.

  • An individual or entity (e.g., corporation, firm, business or proprietorship) that makes one or more independent expenditures to pay for a communication totaling $1,000 or more in a calendar year that is not coordinated with the affected candidate or committee qualifies as a committee and must file reports.

(Cal. Gov't Code § 82031)

What Needs to be Reported

A committee making an independent expenditure must disclose the following information:

  • Identify the name and street address of the committee that is making the independent expenditure.
  • Identify the candidate or ballot measure supported or opposed.
  • The date of expenditure.
  • A description of the expenditure (e.g., radio advertisement, billboard, mailing).
  • The cumulative-to-date total expended by the committee for that candidate or measure in connection with the election, although the cumulative-to-date total is not required when filing a 10-day $5,000 ballot measure report outside of the 90-day election cycle, as described below.

A person or committee making independent expenditures totaling $5,000 or more to support or oppose the qualification or passage of a single state ballot measure must file a report within 10 business days of making the independent expenditures that contains the following information:

  • The full name, street address and identification number of the committee.
  • The number or letter of the measure if the measure has qualified for the ballot and has been assigned a number or letter.
  • The title of the measure if the measure has not been assigned a number or letter but has been issued a title by the attorney general or the subject of the measure if the measure has not been assigned a number or letter and has not been issued a title by the attorney general.
  • Contributions of $100 or more received since the closing date of the last campaign statement filed through the date of the independent expenditure must disclose:
  • The date and amount of the contribution.
  • The name, address and identification number of the committee to whom the contribution was made.
  • The information regarding contributions or loans received

Independent expenditures that total in the aggregate $1,000 or more and are made to support or oppose a single state candidate or a single state ballot measure in the 90 days before or on the date of the candidate’s or measure’s election must be reported within 24 hours. The report must disclose independent expenditures made and contributions of $100 or more:

  • Date of contribution received or made.
  • Name and address of the filer, and if a committee, must enter the filer's identification number issued by the secretary of state.
  • If the contributor is an individual, his or her occupation and employer.
  • Disclose contributions of $100 or more received since the closing date of the last campaign statement filed through the date of the independent expenditure. It should report:
  • The date and amount of the contribution.
  • The name, address and identification number of the committee to whom the contribution was made.
  • Interest rate of any loans, if any.

Verification that expenditures were not coordinated with a candidate or measure committee must be reported to the Fair Political Practices Commission.    

(Cal. Gov't Code §§ 84204, 84204.5, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 2, § 18225.7)

COLORADO

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that is not controlled by or coordinated with any candidate or agent of such candidate. Expenditures that are controlled by or coordinated with a candidate or candidate’s agent are deemed to be both contributions by the maker of the expenditures, and expenditures by the candidate committee.

(Colo. Const. Art. XXVIII, Section 2)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person that accepts a donation or makes an independent expenditure in an aggregate amount in excess of $1,000 in any calendar year must report to the secretary of state. All persons and independent expenditure committees must itemize all expenditures of more than $20 in the aggregate and all donations of more than $250. The report must include the following information:

  • All contributions, expenditures and obligations entered into, including the name and address of each person who has contributed $20 or more.
  • All contributions of $250 per year or more from natural persons, including non-monetary contributions given for the purpose of making an independent expenditure must be itemized, including the name and address of the donor. If the person making the donation is a natural person, the disclosure must also include the donor’s occupation and employer. If the committee is unable to gather the information within 30 days after receipt of the donation, the committee must return the donation to the donor no later than the 31st day after receipt.
  • If the person making the donation of $250 or more is not a natural person, the disclosure must also include:
  • The donor’s full name, or, if the donor is a subsidiary of a parent corporation, the full name of the parent corporation, spelling out any acronyms.
  • All names under which the donor does business in the state.
  • The address of the home office of the donor, or, if the donor is a subsidiary of a parent corporation, the home office of the parent corporation.

(Colo. Rev. Stat. §§ 1-45-107.5, 1-45-108)

CONNECTICUT

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that is made without the consent, coordination or consultation of, a candidate or agent of the candidate, candidate committee, political committee or party committee.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-601c)

What Needs to be Reported

Any individual, committee, firm, partnership, organization, association, syndicate, company trust, corporation, limited liability company or any other legal entity who makes or obligates to make an independent expenditure more than $1,000 in the aggregate must file a report with Elections Enforcement Commission. The reports must include the following information:

  • The name of the person making or obligating to make independent expenditure or expenditures.
  • The tax-exempt status of such person, if applicable.
  • The mailing address or principal business address of the person, if different from the mailing address.
  • The address, telephone number and electronic mail address of the agent for service of process in this state of such person.
  • The date of the primary or election for which the independent expenditure or expenditures were made or obligated to be made.
  • The name of any candidate who was the subject of any independent expenditure or expenditures and whether the independent expenditure or expenditures were in support of or in opposition to such candidate.
  • The name, telephone number and electronic mail address for the individual filing such report.
  • The amount of the independent expenditure.
  • A brief description of the expenditure made, including the type of communication, based on categories determined by the State Elections Enforcement Commission, and the allocation of such expenditure in support of or in opposition to each candidate, if such expenditure was made in support of or in opposition to more than one candidate.
  • The source and the amount of any donation more than $5,000 made for independent expenditures.

(Conn. Gen. Stat. § 9-601d)

DELAWARE

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means any expenditure made by any individual or other person (other than a candidate committee or a political party) expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate, which is made without cooperation or consultation with any candidate, or any committee or agent of such candidate, and which is not made in concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, any candidate or any committee or agent of such candidate.

(15 Del. C. § 8002)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person, other than a candidate committee or political party, who makes an expenditure for any third-party advertisement over $500 during an election period must file a third-party advertisement report with the State Election Commissioner. Third-party advertisement means an independent expenditure. The report must include the following information:

  • All aggregate contributions.
  • All contributions over $100 with the name and address of each contributor.
  • For contributions from non-persons, the name and address of any person who owns 50% or more of the entity and a responsible party if the contribution is over $1,200.
  • Name and address of all expenditures over $100, the exact amount, the purpose and each candidate and which office the money was spent on behalf.

(15 Del. C. §§ 8030, 8031)

FLORIDA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a candidate or the approval or rejection of an issue, which expenditure is not controlled by, coordinated with, or made upon consultation with, any candidate, political committee or agent of such candidate or committee.

(Fla. Stat. § 106.011)

What Needs to be Reported

Each person who makes an independent expenditure with respect to any candidate or issue, which, in the aggregate, is $5,000 or more, must file reports with the Division of Elections in the same manner and at the same time as a political committee. The independent expenditure report must include the following information:

  • The full name and address of the person making the expenditure.
  • The full name and address of each person to whom and for whom each such expenditure has been made.
  • The amount, date and purpose of each such expenditure.
  • A description of the services or goods obtained by each such expenditure.
  • The issue to which the expenditure relates.
  • The name and address of, and office sought by, each candidate on whose behalf such expenditure was made.
  • All contributions received by political committees are reported, but contributions over $100 are itemized with name, address and occupation. This only applies to political committees.

(Fla. Stat. §§ 106.071, 106.07)

GEORGIA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure for a communication which expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate, but which is made independently of any candidate's campaign. An expenditure is "independent" only if it meets certain conditions. It must not be made with the cooperation or consent of, or in consultation with, or at the request or suggestion of any candidate or any of his or her agents or authorized committees.

Independent expenditure committee means any committee, club, association, partnership, corporation, labor union or other group of persons, other than a campaign committee, political party or political action committee, which receives donations during a calendar year from persons who are members or supporters of the committee and which expends such funds either for the purpose of affecting the outcome of an election for any elected office or to advocate the election or defeat of any particular candidate.

(O.C.G.A. § 21-5-3, Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. r. 189-3-.01)

What Needs to be Reported

Any independent committee which accepts contributions or makes expenditures for the purpose of affecting the outcome of an election or advocates the election or defeat of any candidate must file disclosure reports. The reports must include the following information:

  • The amount and date of receipt, along with the name, mailing address, occupation and employer of any person making a contribution of more than $100.
  • The name, mailing address, occupation and employer of any person to whom an expenditure or provision of goods or services of the value of more than $100 is made and the amount, date and general purpose thereof, including the name of the candidate or candidates in support of or in opposition to whom, the expenditure or provision was made.
  • The total of expenditures made as follows:
  • Expenditures must be reprted for the applicable reporting year.
  • The first report of a reporting year must list the total expenditures made during the period covered by the report.
  • Subsequent reports must list the total expenditures made during the period covered by the report, the cumulative total of expenditures made during the reporting year and net balance on hand.
  • The corporate, labor union or other affiliation of any political action committee, candidate, campaign committee or independent committee making a contribution of the value of more than $100.

(O.C.G.A. § 21-5-34)

HAWAII

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate that is not made in concert or cooperation with or at the request or suggestion of the candidate, the candidate committee, a party or their agents.

  • Expressly advocating means a communication when taken as a whole and with limited reference to external events, could be susceptible to no other reasonable interpretation but as an exhortation to vote for or against a candidate because:
  • The communication is unmistakable, unambiguous and suggestive of only one meaning.
  • The communication presents a clear plea for action and is not merely informative.
  • Reasonable minds could not differ as to whether the communication encourages actions to elect or defeat a clearly identified candidate or encourages some other kind of action.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 11-302)

What Needs to be Reported

An independent expenditure committee means a noncandidate committee that will only make independent expenditures. Noncandidate committee means an organization, association, party or individual that has the purpose of making or receiving contributions, making expenditures or incurring financial obligations to influence the nomination for election, or the election of any candidate to office or for or against any question or issue on the ballot.

A noncandidate making only independent expenditures receives a contribution of more than $10,000 in the aggregate in an election period from an entity other than an individual, for-profit business entity or labor union must report:

  • The internet address where the cntributing entity’s disclosure report can be publicly accessed.
  • The name, address, ccupation and employer of each funding source that contributed $100 or more in the aggregate in an election period to that contributing entity.
  • An acknowledgment that the contributing entity is not subject to any state or federal disclosure reporting requirements regarding the source of the contributing entity’s funds.
  • All expenditures should include the name and address of each payee and the amount, date and purpose of each expenditure. Also, any:
  • Independent expenditures should include the name of any candidate supported, opposed or clearly identified.
  • The purpose of an independent expenditure should include the name of the candidate who is supported or opposed by the expenditure and whether the expenditure supports or opposes the candidate.
  • A certification that no expenditures have been coordinated with a candidate, candidate committee or any agent of a candidate or candidate committee.

(Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 11-333, 11-335)

IDAHO

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means any expenditure by a person for a communication expressly advocating the election, passage or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or measure that is not made with the cooperation or with the prior consent of, or in consultation with, or at the consent of, or in consultation with or at the request of a suggestion of, a candidate or any agent or authorized committee of the candidate or political committee supporting or opposing a measure.

Expressly advocating means any communication containing a message advocating election, passage or defeat including, but not limited to, the name of the candidate or measure or expression such as “vote for,” “elect,” “support,” “cast your ballot for,” “vote against,” “defeat” or “reject.”

(Idaho Code § 67-6602)

What Needs to be Reported

Each person who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount more than $100 in support of or in opposition to any one candidate, political committee or measure must file a statement of the expenditure with the secretary of state. The statement should include:

  • The name and address of any person to whom an expenditure in excess of $50 has been made by any such person in support of or in opposition to any such candidate or measure during the reporting period.
  • The amount.
  • The date.
  • The purpose of each such expenditure, including the identity of the candidate or measure and whether the expenditure was made either in support of or in opposition to such candidate or measure.
  • The total sum of all expenditures made in support of or in opposition to any such candidate or measure. 
  • The name and address of any person who gave contributions more than $50. This only applies to political actions committees.

Each person who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount of $1,000 or more after the sixteenth day before, but more than 48 hours before, any primary or general election should file a written statement of the expenditure with the secretary of state not more than 48 hours from the time of such expenditure.

Any nonbusiness entity that is not a political committee making expenditures in or directed to voters in the state of Idaho in an amount exceeding $1,000 in any calendar year for the purpose of supporting or opposing one or more candidates or measures should file a statement with the secretary of state. Nonbusiness entity means any group of two or more individuals, a corporation, association, firm, partnership, committee, club or other organization that does not have as its principal purpose the conduct of business activities for profit; and received contributions, gifts or membership fees in the aggregate more than 10% percent of its total receipts for the year. The statement should include:

  • The name and address of the nonbusiness entity and the name and address of its principal officer or directors.
  • The name and address of each person whose fees, dues, payments or other consideration paid to such nonbusiness entity during either of the prior two calendar years has exceeded $500 or who has paid or has agreed to pay fees, dues, payments or other consideration exceeding $500 to such entity during the current year.

(Idaho Code §§ 67-6611, 67-6606)

ILLINOIS

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means any payment, gift, donation or expenditure of funds by a person or political committee for the purpose of making electioneering communications or of expressly advocating for or against the nomination for election, election, retention or defeat of a clearly identifiable public official or candidate or for or against any question of public policy to be submitted to the voters and that is not made in connection, consultation or concert with or at the request or suggestion of the public official or candidate, the public official’s or candidate’s designated political committee or campaign, or the agent or agents of the public official, candidate or political committee or campaign.

An independent expenditure committee is a type of political action committee. This committee is unable to make direct contributions to candidates or committees, with the exception of other independent expenditure committees or ballot initiative committees.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-1.15)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees must file quarterly report regarding any independent expenditures made during the reporting period to the State Board of Elections. The report must include the following information:

  • The total sum of all receipts by or for the committee or candidate during the reporting period.
  • Expenditures and itemized expenditures more than $150, in an aggregate amount or value, must include:
  • The full name and mailing address of each person to whom expenditures have been made by the committee or candidate within the reporting period.
  • The amount of expenditure.
  • The date of expenditure.
  • The purpose of each expenditure.
  • The question of public policy or the name and address of, and the office sought by, each candidate on whose behalf that expenditure was made.
  • The full name and mailing address of each person to whom an expenditure for personal services, salaries and reimbursed expenses in excess of $150 has been made and that is not otherwise reported, including the amount, date and purpose of the expenditure.
  • The name and address of each person who receives a contribution of more than $150, including the amount and date. If the contributor is an individual who contributed more than $500, the occupation and employer of the contributor or, if the occupation and employer of the contributor are unknown, a statement that the committee has made a good faith effort to ascertain this information.
  • The value of each asset held as an investment, as of the final day of the reporting period.
  • The total sum of expenditures made by the committee during the reporting period.
  • The full name and mailing address of each person to whom the committee owes debts or obligations in excess of $150 and the amount of those debts or obligations.

An individual who makes independent expenditures supporting or opposing a particular candidate is required to file a special written disclosure with the State Board of Elections if the independent expenditures total more than $3,000 in a 12-month period. This disclosure must be filed within two business days of exceeding the $3,000 threshold and must identify:

  • The person making the independent expenditures as well as their employer and occupation.
  • The public official or candidate supported or opposed.
  • The date(s), amount(s) and nature of each independent expenditure.
  • Once the threshold is reached, the individual is required to report further expenditures in relation to the same election in $1,000 increments until the conclusion of the election.

(10 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/9-11)

INDIANA

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Indiana does not define independent expenditures. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

IOWA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means one or more expenditures in excess of $1,000 in the aggregate for a communication that expressly advocates the nomination, election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or the passage or defeat of a ballot issue that is made without the prior approval or coordination with a candidate, candidate’s committee or a ballot issue committee.

(Iowa Code § 68A.404)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person that makes an expenditure for a communication (such as direct mailing, brochure or newspaper advertisement) that is done without the approval or coordination of a candidate or committee and that expressly advocates the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate or the passage or defeat of a ballot issue. The independent expenditure statement must contain all of the following information:

  • Identification of the individuals or persons filing the statement.
  • Description of the position advocated by the individuals or persons with regard to the clearly identified candidate or ballot issue.
  • Identification of the candidate or ballot issue benefited by the independent expenditure.
  • The dates on which the expenditure or expenditures took place or will take place.
  • Description of the nature of the action taken that resulted in the expenditure or expenditures.
  • The fair market value of the expenditure or expenditures.
  • A certification by an officer representing the person, if the person is other than an individual or individuals, that the board of directors, executive council or similar organizational leadership body expressly authorized the independent expenditure or use of treasury funds for the independent expenditure by resolution or other affirmative action within the calendar year when the independent expenditure was incurred.
  • The name and address of every contributor or source of funding that provided anything of value that was provided for the purpose of furthering the independent expenditure. A person making an independent expenditure shall not be required to disclose the names and addresses of individual members who pay dues to a labor union, organization or association or individual stockholders of a business corporation.

(Iowa Code § 68A.404)

KANSAS

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that is made without the cooperation or consent of the candidate or agent of such candidate intended to be benefited and which expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate.

(Kan. Stat. Ann. § 25-4148)

What Needs to be Reported

A political committee or party committee that makes an independent expenditure must file a report with the secretary of state.

  • The vendor to whom the expenditure was made must be disclosed.
  • Any independent expenditure in excess of $300 must show the name and address of the candidate whose nomination, election or defeat is expressly advocated, the amount of the independent expenditure and the specific service or product provided.
  • A separate report must be made on a daily basis for the Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday immediately preceding the election. Each daily report must contain the amount, date and purpose of each such independent expenditure, as well as the name of the candidate whose nomination, election or defeat is expressly advocated.
  • If an independent expenditure is made by payment to an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant for disbursement to vendors, the report of such independent expenditure must show in detail the name of each such vendor and the amount, date and purpose of the payments to each, as well as the name of the candidate whose nomination, election or defeat is expressly advocated.
  • The name and address of each person who has made one or more contributions in an aggregate amount or value more than $50 during the election period together with the amount and date of the contributions. If the amount being contributed by an individual is over $150, the report must list the occupation of the individual contributor. If the individual contributor is not employed for compensation, then the report must list the occupation of the contributor’s spouse.

Any party committee or political committee which has made or has contracted to make independent expenditures in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $300 or more during the period commencing 11 days before a primary or general election must file a report containing:

  • The name and address of the party committee or political committee.
  • The amount, date and purpose of each such independent expenditure,
  • The name of the candidate whose nomination, election or defeat is expressly advocated.
  • When an independent expenditure is made by payment to an advertising agency, public relations firm or political consultant for disbursement to vendors, the report of such independent expenditure must show in detail the name of each such vendor and the amount, date and purpose of the payments.
  • The name of the candidate whose nomination, election or defeat is expressly advocated.
  • The report shall be made on or before the close of business on the Thursday preceding the date of the election.

(Kan. Stat. Ann. §§ 25-4148, 25-4148a, 25-4148c, 25-4150)

KENTUCKY

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means the expenditure of money or other things of value for a communication which expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or slate of candidates, and which is made without any coordination, consultation or cooperation with any candidate, slate of candidates, campaign committee or any authorized person acting on behalf of any of them, and which is not made in concert with, or at the request or suggestion of any candidate, slate of candidates, campaign committee or any authorized person acting on behalf of any of them.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. § 121.015)

What Needs to be Reported

A permanent committee and person must file an independent expenditure report with the Registry of Election Finance when the independent expenditure exceeds $500 in the aggregate in any one election. The report should contain:

  • A certification, under penalty of perjury, that the expenditure meets the standard of independence.
  • The date, amount and purpose of the expenditure.
  • Whether the expenditure is in support of or in opposition to the candidate, slate of candidates or issue.
  • The name of the candidate, slate of candidates and the office sought or the name of the issue.
  • The person’s name, address, occupation and employer. If the independent expenditure is made by a committee, the committee must provide its name, address and a description of the major business, social or political interest represented.
  • The name and address of the person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The name and address of each person who gave contributions in the aggregate of more than $100, including the amount and date. If the contributor is an individual, the occupation and employer. This only applies to permanent committees.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. § 121.150, 32 Ky. Admin. Regs. 1:080)

LOUISIANA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

No definition for independent expenditure. Louisiana does have reporting requirements for independent expenditures.

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who makes any independent expenditure must file reports if the expenditures are more than $500 in the aggregate. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting. The report should include the following information:

  • The full name and address of each person to whom an expenditure has been made by the candidate during the reporting period.
  • The amount of expenditure.
  • A description of the purpose as it relates to the expenditure.
  • The date of each expenditure.
  • The full name and address of each person who has made one or more contributions to a political committee. This applies only to political committees.

(La. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 18:1495.5, 18:1501.1)

MAINE

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means any expenditure made by a person, party committee or political action committee that is not made in cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, a candidate’s authorized political committee or an agent of either and that:

  • Is made to design, produce or disseminate any communication that expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate; or
  • Is made to design, produce or disseminate a communication that names or depicts a clearly identified candidate and is disseminated during the 28 days, including election day, before a primary election; during the 35 days, including election day, before a special election; or from Labor Day to a general election day.

(Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 21-A, § 1019-B)

What Needs to be Reported

A person, party committee or political action committee (PAC) that makes any independent expenditure in excess of $250 should file a report with the commission. A report must contain:

  • An itemized account of each expenditure in excess of $250 in any one candidate’s election.
  • The date and purpose of each expenditure.
  • The name of each payee or creditor.
  • Whether the expenditure is in support of or in opposition to the candidate.
  • An itemization of each contribution of more than $50 received by a PAC for the purpose of influencing a campaign, including the name, occupation, places of business and mailing address of each contributor. This only applies to PACs.
  • A statement under oath or affirmation whether the expenditure is made in cooperation, consultation or concert with or at the request or suggestion of, the candidate or an authorized committee or agent of the candidate.

(Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 21-A, §§ 1014, 1019-B)

MARYLAND

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Definition of Independent Expenditure:

Independent expenditure means a gift, transfer, disbursement or promise of money or a thing of value by a person expressly advocating the success or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or ballot issue if the gift, transfer, disbursement or promise of money or a thing of value is not made in coordination, cooperation, consultation, understanding, agreement or concert with or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, a campaign finance entity of a candidate, an agent of a candidate or a ballot issue committee.

  • Clearly identified means:
  • The name of the candidate appears.
  • A photograph or drawing of the candidate appears.
  • The identity of the candidate or ballot issue is apparent by unambiguous reference.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. § 1-101)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who makes aggregate independent expenditures of $5,000 or more in an election cycle must file a report with the State Board of Elections. An independent expenditure report must include the following information:

  • The identity of the person making the independent expenditures and of the person exercising direction or control over the activities of the person making the independent expenditures.
  • The business address of the person making the independent expenditures.
  • The amount and date of each independent expenditure during the period covered by the report and the person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The candidate or ballot issue to which the independent expenditure relates and whether the independent expenditure supports or opposes that candidate or ballot issue.
  • The identity of each person who made cumulative donations of $6,000 or more to the person making the independent expenditures during the period covered by the report.

(Md. Election Law Code Ann. § 13-306)

MASSACHUSETTS

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure made or liability incurred by an individual, group, association, corporation, labor union, political committee or other entity as payment for goods or services to expressly advocate the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate; provided, however, that the expenditure is made or incurred without cooperation or consultation with any candidate or a nonelected political committee organized on behalf of the candidate or an agent of the candidate and is not made or incurred in concert with or at the request or suggestion of the candidate, a nonelected political committee organized on behalf of the candidate or agent of the candidate.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, § 1)

What Needs to be Reported

Every individual, group, association, corporation, labor union, political committee or other entity that makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount exceeding $250 during any calendar year for the express purpose of promoting the election or defeat of a candidate must file with the Office of Campaign and Political Finance.

The report includes:

  • The name and address of the individual, group, association, corporation, labor union, political committee or other entity making the expenditure.
  • The name of the candidate whose election or defeat the expenditure promoted.
  • The name and address of any person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The total amount or value.
  • The purpose and the date of the expenditure.
  • The full name and address of each person who has made a contribution more than $50 in the reporting period to an independent expenditure PAC, including the amount and date of the contribution. This only applies to independent expenditure PACs.

Any individual, group, association, corporation, labor union, political committee or other entity that makes an independent expenditure in an aggregate amount exceeding $250 after the 10th day prior to the election, but more than 24 hours before the date of any election, must file a report that discloses the same information:

  • The name and address of the individual, group, association, corporation, labor union, political committee or other entity making the expenditure.
  • The name of the candidate whose election or defeat the expenditure promoted.
  • The name and address of any person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The purpose and the date of the expenditure.

(Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 55, § 18A, 970 Mass. Code Regs. 2.17)

MICHIGAN

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person if the expenditure is not made in cooperation, consultation or concert with or at the request or suggestion of, a ballot question committee or a candidate, a candidate committee or its agents or a political party committee or its agents and if the expenditure is not a contribution to a committee.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 169.209)

What Needs to be Reported

A person that makes an independent expenditure in an amount of $100.01 or more in a calendar year must file a report with the secretary of state. The report must be made within 10 days after making that independent expenditure and it must include the following information:

  • The date of the expenditure.
  • A brief description of the nature of the expenditure.
  • The amount of expenditure.
  • The name and address of the person to whom it was paid.
  • The name and address of the person filing the report, together with the name, address, occupation, employer and principal place of business of each person that contributed $100.01 or more to the expenditure.
  • Identify the candidate or ballot question for or against which the independent expenditure was made.

(Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 169.251)

MINNESOTA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate, if the expenditure is made without the express or implied consent, authorization or cooperation of, and not in concert with or at the request or suggestion of, any candidate or any candidate’s principal campaign committee or agent.

  • An independent expenditure is not a contribution to that candidate.
  • An independent expenditure does not include the act of announcing a formal public endorsement of a candidate for public office unless the act is simultaneously accompanied by an expenditure that would otherwise qualify as an independent expenditure under this subdivision.

Independent expenditure political committee means a political committee that makes only independent expenditures and disbursements.

Independent expenditure political fund means a political fund that makes only independent expenditures and disbursements

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.01)

What Needs to be Reported

Any independent expenditure committee, independent expenditure political fund, individual or an association that has received contributions or made independent expenditures aggregating more than $1,500 in a calendar year must file reports with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board. The report must include the following information:

  • The name, address and registration number (if registered with the board) of each individual or association to whom aggregate independent expenditures have been made within the year in excess of $200.
  • The amount, date and purpose of each expenditure, including an explanation of how the expenditure was used.
  • Whether the independent expenditures were made in support or opposition to a candidate or local candidate and include the candidate’s name, address and office sought.
  • Each receipt over $200 not otherwise listed.
  • The sum of all independent expenditures made within the year.
  • The name, address, employer or occupation if self-employed and registration number if registered with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board, of each individual or association that has made one or more contributions, including the purchase of tickets for a fundraising effort, that in aggregate within the year exceed $200 for legislative or statewide candidates or more than $500 for ballot questions, together with the amount and date of each contribution and the aggregate amount of contributions within the year from each source.
  • The name and address of a nonprofit corporation that provides administrative assistance to a political committee or political fund, the type of administrative assistance provided, and the aggregate fair market value of each type of assistance provided to the political committee or political fund during the reporting period.

An association may seek an exemption for all of its members or contributors if it demonstrates by clear and convincing evidence that a substantial number of its members or contributors would suffer a restrictive effect on their freedom of association if members were required to seek exemptions individually.

(Minn. Stat. § 10A.20)

MISSISSIPPI

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate that is made without cooperation or consultation with any candidate or any authorized committee or agent of the candidate, and that is not made in concert with or at the request or suggestion of any candidate or any authorized committee or agent of the candidate.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-801)

What Needs to be Reported

Every person who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount or value more than $200 during a calendar year must file a statement with the secretary of state. The statement must include the following:

  • Information indicating whether the independent expenditure is in support of, or in opposition to, the candidate involved.
  • A certification of whether or not such independent expenditure is made in cooperation, consultation or concert with or at the request or suggestion of, any candidate or any authorized committee or agent of such candidate.
  • The identification of each person who made a contribution in excess $200 to the person filing such statement which was made for the purpose of furthering an independent expenditure.
  • In the case of any individual, the name, the mailing address and the occupation of such individual, as well as the name of his or her employer.
  • In the case of any other person, the full name and address of the person.  
  • The total amount of disbursements made during the reporting period, both itemized and non-itemized.
  • The name of each person who received an expenditure, payment or other transfer within the calendar year in an aggregate amount more than $200, together with the date and amount of the expenditure.
  • Any expenditure, payment or other transfer made within the calendar year in excess of $200 must disclose the date and amount.
  • An aggregate year-to-date total of all disbursements.

(Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-809, Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-801)

Missouri

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Missouri does not define independent expenditures. Political advertisements are addressed under expenditures.

MONTANA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure for an election communication to support or oppose a candidate or ballot issue made at any time that is not coordinated with a candidate or ballot issue committee. 

Political committees include ballot issue committees, incidental committees, independent committees and political party committees.

  • Incidental committee means a political committee that is not specifically organized or operating for the primary purpose of supporting or opposing candidates or ballot issues but that may incidentally become a political committee by receiving a contribution or making an expenditure.
  • Independent committee means a political committee organized for the primary purpose of receiving contributions and making expenditures that is not controlled either directly or indirectly by a candidate and that does not coordinate with a candidate in conjunction with the making of expenditures.

(Mont. Code Ann. § 13-1-101)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees should report independent expenditures. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting The report must include:

  • The name of the candidate or committee the independent expenditure was intended to benefit, and the fact that the expenditure was independent.
  • The full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of each person to whom expenditures have been made by the committee or candidate during the reporting period, including the amount, date and purpose of that expenditure and the total amount of expenditures made to each person.
  • The total sum of expenditures made by a political committee during the reporting period.
  • The name and address of each political committee to which the reporting committee made any transfer of funds, together with the amount and dates of all transfers.
  • The name of any person to whom a loan was made during the reporting period, including the full name, mailing address, occupation and principal place of business, if any, of that person and the full names, mailing addresses, occupations and principal places of business, if any, of the endorsers, if any, and the date and amount of each loan.
  • The amount and nature of debts and obligations owed by a political committee.
  • Any other information that may be required by the Commissioner of Political Practices to fully disclose the disposition of funds used to support or oppose candidates or issues.

In addition, independent and incidental committees must report the following:

  • Independent committees must disclose the full name, mailing address, occupation and employer, if any, of each person who has made aggregate contributions during the reporting period for a specified candidate, ballot issue or petition for nomination of $50 or more.
  • Incidental committees must disclose the full name, mailing address, occupation and employer, if any, of each person who has made aggregate contributions during the reporting period for a specified candidate, ballot issue or petition for nomination of $35 or more. These contributions to the committee were made by the contributor in response to an appeal by the incidental committee for contributions to support independent expenditures.

(Mont. Code Ann. §§ 13-37-229, 13-37-232, Mont. Admin. R. 44.11.502)

NEBRASKA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person if the expenditure is not made at the direction of, under the control of, or with the cooperation of another person and if the expenditure is not a contribution to a committee.

(R.R.S. Neb. § 49-1428)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who makes an independent expenditure advocating the election of a candidate or the defeat of a candidate’s opponents or the qualification, passage or defeat of a ballot question, which is in an amount of more than $250, must file a report of the independent expenditure within 10 days with the commission including the following information:

  • The date of the expenditure.
  • A brief description of the nature of the expenditure.
  • The amount of the expenditure.
  • The name and address of the person to whom it was paid.
  • The name and address of the person filing the report.
  • The name, address, occupation, employer and principal place of business of each person who contributed more than $250 to the expenditure.
  • The name and office sought of the candidate whose nomination or election is supported or opposed by the expenditure.
  • The identification of the ballot question, the qualification, passage or defeat of which is supported or opposed.

An independent committee including a segregated political fund making a late independent expenditure of $1,000 or more during the 14 days immediately preceding an election must file a report within two days. The report should include:

  • The full name and street address of the recipient of the expenditure.
  • The name and office sought of the candidate whose nomination or election is supported or opposed by the expenditure.
  • The identification of the ballot question, the qualification, passage or defeat of which is supported or opposed.

Major out-of-state contributors that make expenditures totaling more than $10,000 in any calendar year in connection with one or more elections must report expenditures to the Nebraska Accountability and Disclosure Commission. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting. The report should include the following information:

  • The amount, nature, value and date of the expenditure.
  • The name and address of the person who received the expenditure.
  • The name and address of the person filing the report.
  • The name, address, occupation and employer of each person making a contribution of more than $200 in the calendar year to the person filing the report.

(R.R.S. Neb. § 49-1467, R.R.S. Neb. § 49-1478.01, R.R.S. Neb. § 49-1457, R.R.S. Neb. § 49-1479.02)

NEVADA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure which is made by a person who is not under the direction or control of a candidate for office, of a group of such candidates or of any person involved in the campaign of a candidate or group and which is made for or against a candidate or group and is not solicited or approved by a candidate or group.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.0077)

What Needs to be Reported

Every person, political action committee and political party who makes an independent expenditure in excess of $1,000 must file a contributions and expenses report with the secretary of state. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting. The report must include the following information:

  • For each contribution in excess of $1,000 and contributions which a contributor has made cumulatively in excess of $1,000 since the beginning of the current reporting period must disclose the name and address of the contributor and the date on which the contribution was received.
  • For each expense more than $100, the following information must be disclosed:
  • The payee's name and address.
  • The category of expense, such as expenses related to advertising.
  • The date of the expense.
  • The amount of the expenditure.

(Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.140, Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 294A.200, Nev. Admin. Code § 294A.075)

NEW HAMPSHIRE

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditures means expenditures that pay for the development and distribution of a communication that expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or candidates or the success or defeat of a measure or measures, which are made without cooperation or consultation with any candidate, or any authorized committee or agent of such candidate and which are not made in concert with or at the request or suggestion of, any candidate or any authorized committee or agent of such candidate.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:2)

What Needs to be Reported

Any political committee whose independent expenditures, in aggregate, exceed $1,000 must file an itemized statement with the secretary of state which must be received not later than 48 hours after such expenditures are made. Each statement must include the following information:

  • The date of each independent expenditure.
  • The name and address of the person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The name of the candidate on whose behalf or against whom each independent expenditure was made.
  • The amount of each expenditure.
  • The purpose of each expenditure and the aggregate amount of all previous independent expenditures.
  • If the independent expenditure is made in support of or in opposition to more than one candidate, the statement must allocate the way in which the expenditure was made among the candidates on a reasonable basis.

Any political committee or political advocacy organization that is exempt from taxation under sections 501(c)(4), 501(c)(5) or 501(c)(6) of the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 may disclose but must not be required to disclose in its itemized statement of receipts, the identity of its donors.

(N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 664:6)

NEW JERSEY

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person expressly advocating, or the functional equivalent thereof, the election or defeat of:

  • A clearly identified candidate that is not made in concert or cooperation with or at the request or suggestion of the candidate, the candidate’s committee, a political party committee or an agent thereof. or
  • A public question, legislation or regulation, which is not made in concert or cooperation with or at the request or suggestion of the sponsors, organizers or committee supporting or opposing the question, legislation or regulation, a political party or agents thereof.

(N.J. Stat. § 19:44A-3)

What Needs to be Reported

An independent expenditure must be reported on the dates established for filing as a political committee. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting. The independent expenditure report must include the following information:

  • The name and mailing address of the person making the independent expenditure.
  • If the person is an individual, the occupation of the individual and the name and mailing address of the individual's employer.
  • The date of the election.
  • An itemization of the expenditures, including the dates the expenditures were made, the names and addresses of the payees, the amount of each expenditure and the total amount expended.  
  • The purpose of the expenditure.

An independent expenditure in an amount more than $1,900 during the period of time between the 13th day prior to an election and the date of the election, must file a notice of the expenditure with the Election Law Enforcement Commission within 48 hours. The notice must include the following:

  • The name and mailing address of the person making the independent expenditure.
  • If the person is an individual, the occupation of the individual and the name and mailing address of the individual's employer.
  • An itemization of the expenditures, including the dates the expenditures were made, the names and addresses of the payees, the amount of each expenditure and the total amount expended.

(N.J.A.C. 19:25-12.8, N.J.A.C. 19:25-12.8A)

NEW MEXICO

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that is:

  • Made by a person other than a candidate or campaign committee.
  • Not a coordinated expenditure. An expenditure that is made by a person other than a candidate at the request or suggestion of, or in cooperation, consultation or concert with a candidate or political party.
  • Made to pay for an advertisement that:
  • Expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or the passage or defeat of a clearly identified ballot question.
  • Is susceptible to no other reasonable interpretation than as an appeal to vote for or against a clearly identified candidate or ballot question; or
  • Refers to a clearly identified candidate or ballot question and is published and disseminated to the relevant electorate in New Mexico within 30 days before the primary election or 60 days before the general election at which the candidate or ballot question is on the ballot.

(N.M. Stat. Ann. § 1-19-26)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person other than a registered political action committee (PAC), who makes an independent expenditure in an amount more than $1,000 for one or more non-statewide race or ballot measure or more than $3,000 for one or more statewide races or ballot measures must file a report of the independent expenditure with the secretary of state. The report must contain the following information:

  • The name and address of the person who made the independent expenditure.
  • The name and address of the person to whom the independent expenditure was made and the amount, date and purpose of the independent expenditure. If no reasonable estimate of the monetary value of a particular expenditure is practicable, it is sufficient to report instead a description of the services, property or rights furnished through the expenditure.
  • The source of the contributions used to make the independent expenditure.

A person who makes independent expenditures in an amount totaling $3,000 or less in a nonstatewide election or $9,000 or less in a statewide election must report:

  • The name and address of each person who has made contributions more than $200 in the election cycle that were earmarked or made in response to a solicitation to fund independent expenditures, along with the amount.
  • The amount of each such contribution made by that person.
  • The name and address of each person who made contributions more than $200 in an election cycle exclusively from a segregated bank account, along with the amount.
  • The name and address of each person who made contributions more than $5,000 in an election cycle from funds other than those described above, along with the amount.

(N.M. Code R. § 1.10.13.11, N.M. Stat. Ann. § 1-19-27.3)

NEW YORK

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means:

  • An expenditure made by an independent expenditure committee conveyed to 500 or more members of a general public audience or any paid internet or digital advertisement targeted to 50 or more members of the general public audience. An independent expenditure shall be in the form of:
  • An audio or video communication via broadcast, cable or satellite.
  • A written cmmunication via advertisements, pamphlets, circulars, flyers, brochures, letterheads.
  • Other published statements which shall include, but nt be limited to, digital media, any paid internet or digital advertisement.
  • It contains words such as vote, oppose, support, elect, defeat or reject, which call for the election or defeat of the clearly identified candidate.
  • It refers to and advocates for or against a clearly identified candidate or ballot proposal on or after Jan. 1 of the year of the election in which such candidate is seeking office or such proposal shall appear on the ballot; or within 60 days before a general or special election for the office sought by the candidate or 30 days before a primary election, includes or references a clearly identified candidate.

Independent expenditure committee means a political committee, which makes only independent expenditures, and does not coordinate with a candidate, candidate’s authorized committees or an agent of the candidate.

An independent expenditure committee may be created by a person, group of persons, corporation, unincorporated business entity, labor organization or business, trade or professional association or organization or political committee.

(N.Y. Comp. Codes R. & Regs. tit. 9, § 6200.10, NY CLS Elec § 14-100)

What Needs to be Reported

All political committees, including independent expenditure committees, must file a report with the State Board of Elections. The report must include the following information:

  • The name, address, occupation and employer of the person making the statement.
  • For each expenditure or payment made:
  • The dollar amount paid for each independent expenditure, the name and address of the person or entity receiving the payment, the date the payment was made and a description of the independent expenditure.
  • The election to which the independent expenditure pertains and the name of the clearly identified candidate or the ballot proposal referenced and whether the candidate or ballot proposal is supported or opposed.
  • A list of all expenditures made by, and liabilities incurred for services rendered during the relevant reporting period.
  • For each contribution received, the name, address, occupation and employer of any person providing a contribution, gift, loan, advance or deposit of $1,000 or more for the independent expenditure and the date it was given.

(NY CLS Elec § 14-107)

NORTH CAROLINA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure to support or oppose the nomination or election of one or more clearly identified candidates or a clearly identified political party that is not a coordinated expenditure.

A coordinated expenditure is an expenditure that is made in concert or cooperation with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate or candidate campaign committee.   

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.6)

What Needs to be Reported

Political party committees, political action committees (PAC), independent expenditure political committees, individuals, corporations, professional associations, labor unions and other business entities may make independent expenditures. Political party committees, PACs and independent expenditure political committees report independent expenditures on the committee’s regular contribution and expenditure reports.

Other individuals and entities making independent expenditures with a value in excess of $100 in an election are also required to file disclosure reports as Independent Expenditure Filers. Independent expenditure reports must include all of the following:

  • The independent expenditure filer's name and mailing address.
  • A phone number for the independent expenditure filer.
  • If the independent expenditure filer is an individual, the filer's principal occupation.
  • If the independent expenditure filer is a person or entity, the principal place of business of the person or entity.
  • For each independent expenditure made:
  • The name and mailing address of the payee.
  • The amount paid.
  • The date the expenditure was incurred.
  • A description of the expenditure.
  • The name of the candidate, candidates of an identified political party or referendum supported or opposed by the independent expenditure.
  • For each donation of more than $100 that must be reported:
  • The donor's name and mailing address.
  • If the donor is an individual, the donor's principal occupation.
  • If the donor is a person or entity, the principal place of business of that person or entity.
  • The amount of the donation.
  • The date of the donation.
  • A certification as to whether any expenditures reported were made in concert or cooperation with or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, a candidate campaign committee, a referendum committee, the agent of a candidate, the agent of a candidate campaign committee or an agent of a referendum committee.

(N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-278.12, 8 N.C. Admin. Code 21.0102)

NORTH DAKOTA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure made for a political purpose or for the purpose of influencing the passage or defeat of a measure if the expenditure is made without the express or implied consent, authorization, or cooperation of and not in concert with or at the request or suggestion of, any candidate, committee or political party. 

(N.D. Cent. Code, § 16.1-08.1-01)

What Needs to be Reported

A corporation, cooperative corporation, limited liability company, affiliate, subsidiary or association may make an independent expenditure for a political purpose, including political advertising in support of or opposition to a candidate, political committee or a political party or for the purpose of promoting passage or defeat of initiated or referred measures or petitions. A statement disclosing any expenditure must be filed with the secretary of state within 48 hours after making the expenditure. The statement must include:

  • The full name of the corporation, cooperative corporation, limited liability company, affiliate, subsidiary or association.
  • The complete address of the corporation, cooperative corporation, limited liability company, affiliate, subsidiary or association.
  • The name of the recipient of the expenditure.
  • If the expenditure is related to a measure or petition, the title of the measure or petition and whether the expenditure is made in support of or opposition to the measure or petition.
  • If the expenditure is related to a measure, the election date on which the measure either will appear or did appear on the ballot.
  • The amount of the expenditure.
  • The cumulative total amount of expenditures since the beginning of the calendar year which are required to be reported.
  • The telephone number and the printed name and signature of the individual completing the statement, attesting to the statement being true, complete and correct.
  • The date on which the statement was signed.

(N.D. Cent. Code, § 16.1-08.1-03.5)

OHIO

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person advocating the election or defeat of an identified candidate or candidates, that is not made with the consent of, in coordination, cooperation or consultation with, or at the request or suggestion of any candidate or candidates or of the campaign committee or agent of the candidate or candidates.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.01)

What Needs to be Reported

A corporation, labor organization, campaign committee, legislative campaign fund, political action committee, political contributing entity or political party that makes one or more independent expenditures must file a signed statement with the secretary of state or the board of elections, as appropriate. An independent expenditure will be reported whenever and in the same manner that an expenditure is required to be reported. The statement must include the following information:

  • The reporting person’s or entity’s name and street address.
  • The name and street address of the person or entity to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The amount, date and purpose of each expenditure.
  • A statement that indicates whether such expenditure was in support of or in opposition to a candidate, together with the candidate’s name and office sought or in support of or opposition to any ballot issue together with the ballot issue number, whether it was a state or local issue, and if a local issue, the county or district it covered.
  • A signed certification under penalty of election falsification that such expenditure was not made in cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of any candidate, ballot issue committee or any authorized committee or agent.

Individuals, partnerships or other entities (other entities do not include corporations, labor organizations, campaign committees, legislative campaign funds, political action committees or political parties.) An independent expenditure will be reported whenever and in the same manner that an expenditure is required to be reported. The statement must include the following information:

  • The reporting person’s or entity’s name and street address.
  • The name and street address of the person or entity to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The amount, date and purpose of each expenditure.
  • A statement that indicates whether such expenditure was in support of or in opposition to a candidate, together with the candidate’s name and office sought or in support of or opposition to any ballot issue together with the ballot issue number, whether it was a state or local issue, and if a local issue, the county or district it covered.

(Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3517.10, 3517.105; OAC Ann. 111:2-2-02)

OKLAHOMA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure made by a person to advocate the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or candidates or a ballot measure or ballot measures, but which is not made to, controlled by, coordinated with, requested by, or made upon consultation with a candidate, committee, treasurer, deputy treasurer or agent of a candidate committee or a ballot measure committee.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 1-1-2)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person other than an individual, including a political action committee, that makes an independent expenditure of $5,000 or more in the aggregate must file a report with the Ethics Commission. The report must include the following information:

  • The total of independent expenditures made during the reporting period and the total independent expenditures made during the election cycle.
  • The amount, the date and a brief description or statement of each independent expenditure and the name and office of the candidate supported or opposed, indicating whether the candidate was supported or opposed and a brief description.
  • If the person making the independent expenditure, other than a political action committee, received funds from any other person for the purpose of making an independent expenditure or expenditures, the report must include the name, address and principal business activity of each person contributing funds in excess of $50 in the aggregate and the amount of any such contribution or contributions that have not been previously reported, together with a cumulative total of all contributions made by each person since the first report was filed for the election for which the independent expenditure is being made.
  • The total of all monetary expenditures and monetary transfers.

(74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 10-1-14, 74 Okl. St. Chap. 62, Appx., Standard 257 10-1-16)

OREGON

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person for a communication in support of or in opposition to a clearly identified candidate or measure that is not made with the cooperation or with the prior consent of, or in consultation with or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate or any agent or authorized committee of the candidate, or any political committee or agent of a political committee supporting or opposing a measure.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 260.005)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person making independent expenditures in a total amount of more than $250 in a calendar year must file with the secretary of state a statement of independent expenditures not later than seven calendar days after the total amount of independent expenditures exceeds $250 in a calendar year.

A political committee or independent expenditure filer (any person, other than a political committee, who makes political expenditures that are independent for a communication in support of or in opposition to a candidate, political party or measure.) that makes an independent expenditure must disclose:

  • Information identifying the candidate, measure or political party, indicate support or opposition and the amount apportioned to the candidate, measure or political party.
  • The amount and purpose of each expenditure made in an aggregate amount of more than $100 to a payee.
  • The name of payee or, if applicable, the business name of the payee of the expenditure.
  • The city or county if the payee is not located in a city and state in which the payee is located.
  • The total amount of other expenditures as a single item.

(Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 260.044, 260.083)

PENNSYLVANIA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person made for the purpose of influencing an election without cooperation or consultation with any candidate or any political committee authorized by that candidate, and which is not made in concert with or at the request or suggestion of any candidate or political committee or agent thereof.

(25 Pa. Stat. Ann. § 3241)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees that make independent expenditures to influence the election of a candidate or ballot question must file a report with the secretary of state. The report must include the following information:

  • The name and address of the person filing the independent expenditure report.
  • The name of the organization, if any.
  • The date of the election.
  • The name of the candidate or question supported or opposed.

Every person, other than a political committee, who makes independent expenditures expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or question appearing on the ballot, other than by contribution to a political committee or candidate, in an aggregate amount in excess of $100 during a calendar year must file a report that includes the same information required of a political committee receiving such a contribution.

Note: Pennsylvania’s regulation of independent expenditure committees is governed not solely by statute but also by a permanent injunction.

(25 Pa. Stat. Ann. § 3246, 4 Pa. Code § 177.1)

RHODE ISLAND

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that, when taken as a whole, expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate, or the passage or defeat of a referendum, or amounts to the functional equivalent of such express advocacy, and is in no way coordinated, with any candidate’s campaign, authorized candidate committee or political party committee.

  • An expenditure amounts to the functional equivalent of express advocacy if it can only be interpreted by a reasonable person as advocating the election, passage or defeat of a candidate or referendum, taking into account whether the communication mentions a candidate or referendum and takes a position on a candidate’s character, qualifications or fitness for office.
  • An independent expenditure is not a contribution to that candidate or committee.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25-3)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person, business entity or political action committee making independent expenditures must file a report with the Rhode Island Board of Elections. The report must include the following information:

  • The name of the person responsible for the independent expenditure.
  • The street address, city, state, zip code of the person responsible for the expenditure.
  • The occupation and employer (if self-employed, the name and place of business) of the person responsible for the expenditure.
  • The name, street address, city, state and zip code of the person receiving the expenditure the date and amount of each expenditure.
  • The year-to-date total.
  • A statement identifying the candidate or referendum that the independent expenditure or electioneering communication is intended to promote the success or defeat and affirm under penalty of false statement that the expenditure is not coordinated with the campaign in question and provide any information that the board of elections requires.
  • The identity of all donors of an aggregate of $1,000 or more to such person, business entity or committee within the current election cycle.

(R.I. Gen. Laws § 17-25.3-1)

SOUTH CAROLINA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means:

  • An expenditure made directly or indirectly by a person to advocate the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or ballot measure.
  • When taken as a whole and in context, the expenditure made by a person to influence the outcome of an elective office or ballot measure, but which is not:
  • Made to.
  • Controlled by.
  • Coordinated with.
  • Requested by; or
  • Made upon consultation with a candidate or an agent of a candidate; or a committee or agent of a committee; or a ballot measure committee or an agent of a ballot measure committee.

(S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1300)

What Needs to be Reported

Any committee that receives contributions or makes independent expenditures in excess of $500 or more during an election cycle for the election or defeat of a candidate must file a report with the State Ethics Commission. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting. The report must include the following information:

  • The total expenditures made by or on behalf of the candidate or committee.
  • The name and address of each person to whom an expenditure is made from campaign funds, including the date, amount, purpose and beneficiary of the expenditure.
  • The total amount of all loans received during the reporting period and the total amount of loans for the year to date. The report also must include the date and amount of each loan from one source during the reporting period, the name and address of each maker or guarantor of each loan, the year-to-date total of each maker or guarantor, and the terms of the loan, including the interest rate, repayment terms, loan payments and existing balances on each loan.
  • The date and amount of any in-kind contributions of more than $100 in the aggregate by one person during the reporting period, and the contributor’s name, address and year-to-date total.
  • The aggregate total of all contributions, loans and other receipts during the reporting period and the year-to-date total; the amount, date and a brief description of each expenditure made during the reporting period, the name and address of the entity to which the expenditure was made and the year-to-date total of expenditures to that entity. Credit card expenses and candidate reimbursements must be itemized so that the purpose and recipient of the expenditure are identified.
  • The total amount of all loans made during the reporting period and the year-to-date total. The report also must include the date and amount of each loan to one entity during the reporting period, the name and address of each recipient of the loan and the terms of the loan, including the interest rate, repayment terms, purpose of the loan, the year-to-date total and existing balances.

(S.C. Code Ann. § § 8-13-1300, 8-13-1308, 8-13-1360)

SOUTH DAKOTA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent communication expenditure means an expenditure, including the payment of money or exchange of other valuable consideration or promise, made by a person, entity or political committee for a communication concerning a candidate or a ballot question which is not made to, controlled by, coordinated with, requested by or made upon consultation with that candidate, political committee or agent of a candidate or political committee.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-1)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person or entity that makes a payment or promise of payment totaling more than $100, including donated goods or services for an independent communication expenditure, must file a report with secretary of state within 48 hours of the time that the communication is disseminated, broadcast or otherwise published. The independent communication expenditure statements must include the following information:

  • The identity of the person or entity making the expenditure.
  • Including mailing address, city and state of a person.
  • If an entity, the mailing address, city and state and website address if applicable.
  • Identify any expenditures made for communications during the current calendar year but not yet reported on a prior statement, the name of each candidate, public office holder, ballot question or political party mentioned or identified in each communication, the amount spent on each communication and a description of the content of each communication.
  • For an entity, the independent communication expenditure statement must also include the name and title of the person filing the report, the name of its chief executive, if any, and the name of the person who authorized the expenditures on behalf of the entity.
  • For an entity whose majority ownership is owned by, controlled by, held for the benefit of, or comprised of 20 or fewer persons, partners, owners, trustees, beneficiaries, participants, members or shareholders, the statement must identify by name and mailing address each person, partner, owner, trustee, beneficiary, participant, shareholder or member who owns, controls or comprises ten percent or more of the entity.
  • A list of each candidate, public office holder, ballot question or political party mentioned or identified in each communication.
  • The amount spent on each communication.
  • A description of the content of each communication.
  • The date the communication was disseminated.

(S.D. Codified Laws § 12-27-16)

TENNESSEE

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person for a communication expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate which is not made with the cooperation or with the prior consent of, or in consultation with, or at the request of, or suggestion of, a candidate or any agent or authorized committee of such candidate.

(Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 0530-1-3-.07)

What Needs to be Reported

Political action committees and political campaign committees must file a detailed disclosure report if either contributions received, or expenditures, including independent expenditures, made to support or oppose any candidate for public office or measure during a reporting period exceeds $1,000. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting A campaign disclosure statement must file with Registry of Election Finance and it must include the following information:

  • Independent expenditures totaling more than $100 to a single payee during a reporting period made to support or oppose a clearly identified candidate shall be itemized, disclosing:
  • The name and address of the payee.
  • The purpose, date and amount of the expenditure.
  • The office sought by the candidate.
  • The total amount of independent expenditures to any payee during the reporting period.
  • Those independent expenditures totaling $100 or less to a single payee during a reporting period will be reported as a total.        

(Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-107, Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-10-105, Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 0530-1-3-.07)

TEXAS

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Direct campaign expenditure means a campaign expenditure that does not constitute a campaign contribution by the person making the expenditure.

  • A campaign expenditure by the person making the expenditure to a candidate or officeholder if the expenditure is made without the prior consent or approval of the candidate or officeholder on whose behalf the expenditure is made.
  • A campaign expenditure made in connection with a measure by the person making the expenditure if it is not made as a political contribution to a political committee supporting or opposing the measure.
  • A direct campaign expenditure is a campaign expenditure for a candidate or officeholder incurred without the candidate’s or the officeholder’s consent.

(Tex. Elec. Code § 251.001)

What Needs to be Reported

A person not acting in concert with another person who makes one or more direct campaign expenditures in an election in the aggregate more than $100 must file a report with the Ethics Commission. The direct campaign report must include the following information:

  • The name and address of the filer.
  • The date of the election.
  • Identify by name the candidates and measures either supported or opposed.
  • The full name and address of the persons to whom the expenditures are made.
  • The dates and amounts of the expenditures.
  • The purpose and description of the expenditures.
  • The total of expenditures.
  • The total of unitemized unpaid incurred expenditures.
  • All expenditures made by credit card.
  • The total of unitemized expenditures charged to a credit card.
  • The name and address of each person that accepted political contributions in the aggregate more than $50 during the reporting period must disclose, along with the dates of the contributions.

(Tex. Elec. Code §§ 254.261, 254.031, 254.0612, 254.181, Tex. Elec. Code § 254.151)

UTAH

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person expressly advocating the success or defeat of a clearly identified candidate or ballot proposition if the expenditure is not made in coordination with, or at the request or suggestion of:

  • A candidate.
  • A candidate’s personal campaign committee.
  • A member of a candidate’s personal campaign committee.
  • A political action committee for which the candidate is an officer with primary decision making authority.
  • An agent of a candidate.
  • A political issues committee.

Independent expenditure includes:

  • The cost of creating and disseminating material for a public communication, including design and production costs; and
  • A contract or other promise to make an expenditure.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-1702)

What Needs to be Reported

Any individual, business organization, personal campaign committee, party committee, political action committee, political issues committee and labor organization that made a total of at least $1,000 in independent expenditures during an election cycle must file an independent expenditure report with the chief election officer within 31 days. An independent expenditure report must include the following information:

  • If the person who made the independent expenditures is an individual, the person’s name, address and phone number must be disclosed.
  • If the person who made the independent expenditures is not an individual, the person’s name, address and phone number must be disclosed. The date of the independent expenditure.
  • The amount of the independent expenditure.
  • The candidate or ballot proposition for which the independent expenditure expressly advocates the success or defeat and a description of whether the independent expenditure supports or opposes the candidate or ballot proposition.
  • The identity, address and phone number of the person to whom the independent expenditure was made.
  • A description of the goods or services obtained by the independent expenditure.
  • Any person who made cumulative donations of $1,000 or more during the current election cycle to the filer of the independent expenditure report must disclose:
  • The identity, address and phone number of the person.
  • The date of the donation.
  • The amount of the donation.

(Utah Code Ann. § 20A-11-1704)

VERMONT

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Vermont does not define independent expenditure.

Independent expenditure-only political committee means:

  • A political committee that conducts its activities entirely independent of candidates.
  • It does not give contributions to candidates, political committees or political parties; does not make related expenditures.
  • Is not closely related to a political party or to a political committee that makes contributions to candidates or makes related expenditures.

(17 V.S.A. § 2901)

What Needs to be Reported

A person who makes expenditures for any one mass media activity totaling $500 or more or an independent expenditure-only political committee that makes an expenditure for any one mass media activity totaling $5,000 or more, adjusted for inflation, must file a mass media report with the secretary of state. The mass media report must include the following information:

  • Identify the person who made the expenditure.
  • The name of each candidate whose name or likeness was included in the activity.
  • The amount and date of the expenditure.
  • To whom it was paid.
  • The purpose of the expenditure.
  • The report shall include the names of the contributors, dates and amounts for all contributions in excess of $100 accepted since the filing of the committee’s last report.
  • If the activity occurs within 45 days before the election and the expenditure was previously reported, an additional report shall be required.

(17 V.S.A. §§ 2971, 17 V.S.A. § 2963, 17 V.S.A. § 2965, 17 V.S.A. § 2967, 17 V.S.A. § 2966)

VIRGINIA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure made by any person, candidate campaign committee or political committee that is not made to, controlled by, coordinated with, or made with the authorization of a candidate, his campaign committee or an agent of the candidate or his campaign committee.

(Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-945.1)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person or political committee that makes independent expenditures, in the aggregate during an election cycle, of $1,000 or more for a statewide election or $200 or more for any other election must report all independent expenditures made for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate to the State Board of Elections. The independent expenditures report must include the following information:

  • Indicate each candidate committee, address, office sought and whether the candidate was supported or opposed from the expenditure as well as the percentage of the expenditure that went to supporting or opposing the candidate’s listed.
  • Name and address of the persons or companies paid.
  • A description of the expenditure. Vague descriptions may result in a request for additional information.
  • The name of the person who authorized the expenditure.
  • The amount paid for the particular expenditure.

(Va. Code Ann. § 24.2-945.2)

WASHINGTON

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that has each of the following elements:

  • It is made in support of or in opposition to a candidate for office by a person who is not:
  • A candidate for that office.
  • An authorized committee of that candidate for that office.
  • A person who has received the candidate’s encouragement or approval to make the expenditure, if the expenditure pays in whole or in part for political advertising supporting that candidate or promoting the defeat of any other candidate or candidates for that office.
  • It is made in support of or in opposition to a candidate for office by a person with whom the candidate has not collaborated for the purpose of making the expenditure, if the expenditure pays in whole or in part for political advertising supporting that candidate or promoting the defeat of any other candidate or candidates for that office.
  • The expenditure pays in whole or in part for political advertising that either specifically names the candidate supported or opposed, or clearly and beyond any doubt identifies the candidate without using the candidate’s name.
  • The expenditure, alone or in conjunction with another expenditure or other expenditures of the same person in support of or opposition to that candidate, has a value of $1,000 or more. A series of expenditures, each of which is under $1,000, constitutes one independent expenditure if their cumulative value is $1,000 or more.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.005)

What Needs to be Reported

Any Individuals and organizations making an independent expenditure, of $100 or more, that supports or opposes a candidate or ballot measure and is made without the cooperation, consultation or cooperation of the campaign it benefits must file a report with the Public Disclosure Commission. The independent expenditure report must include the following information:

  • The name, address and electronic contact information of the person filing the report.
  • The name and address of each person to whom an independent expenditure was made in the aggregate amount of more than $50, and the amount, date and purpose of each such expenditure. If no reasonable estimate of the monetary value of a particular independent expenditure is practicable, it is sufficient to report instead a precise description of services, property or rights furnished through the expenditure and where appropriate to attach a copy of the item produced or distributed by the expenditure.
  • The total sum of all independent expenditures made during the campaign to date.
  • A statement from the person making an independent expenditure that:
  • The expenditure is not financed in any part by a foreign national; and
  • Foreign nationals are not involved in making decisions regarding the expenditure in any way.

(Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.255, Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) § 42.17A.260)

WEST VIRGINIA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person:

  • Expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate, including supporting or opposing the candidates of a political party.
  • That is not made in concert or cooperation with or at the request or suggestion of such candidate, his or her agents, the candidate’s authorized political committee or a political party committee or its agents.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-1a)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person who makes independent expenditures in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $1,000 during a calendar year must file a disclosure statement with the secretary of state. The statement must include the following information:

  • The name of the person making the expenditure.
  • The name of any person sharing or exercising direction or control over the activities of the person making the expenditure.
  • The name of the custodian of the books and accounts of the person making the expenditure.
  • If the person making the expenditure is an entity, the principal place of business of the partnership, corporation, committee, association, organization or group which made the expenditure.
  • The amount of each independent expenditure during the period covered by the statement and the name of the person to whom the expenditure was made.
  • The elections to which the independent expenditure pertain, the names, if known, of the candidates referred to or to be referred to therein, whether the expenditure is intended to support or oppose the identified candidates, and the amount of the total expenditure reported spent to support or oppose each of the identified candidates.
  • The name and address of any person who contributed a total of more than $250 between the first day of the preceding calendar year, and the disclosure date, and whose contributions were made for the purpose of furthering the expenditure.
  • The month, day and year that the contributions of any single contributor exceeded $250.
  • The name and address the political action committee registered with the secretary of state, county clerk or municipal clerk.
  • The name and address of the individual, his or her occupation, the name and address of the individual’s current employer, if any, or, if the individual is self-employed, the name and address of the individual’s business, if any.
  • A description of the contribution, if other than money.
  • The amount of contribution.
  • A certification that such independent expenditure was not made in cooperation, consultation or concert, with, or at the request or suggestion of, any candidate or any authorized committee or agent of such candidate. 
  • Any person who makes a contribution for the purpose of funding an independent expenditure, at the time the contribution is made, provide his or her name, address, occupation, his or her current employer, if any, or, if the individual is self-employed, the name of his or her business, if any, to the recipient of the contribution.

(W. Va. Code § 3-8-2)

WISCONSIN

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure for express advocacy by a person, if the expenditure is not made in coordination with a candidate, candidate committee, candidate’s agent, legislative campaign committee or political party.

(Wis. Stat. § 11.0101)

What Needs to be Reported

Any independent expenditure committee making total disbursements exceeding $2,500 per calendar year, must report all contributions, disbursements and obligations received, made and incurred by the committee. The independent expenditure committee must include in each report the following information:

  • An itemized statement giving the date, full name and street address of each person who has made a contribution to the independent expenditure committee, together with the amount of the contribution.
  • An itemized statement giving the date, full name and street address of each committee to which the independent expenditure committee has made a contribution, together with the amount of the contribution.
  • The occupation, if any, of each individual contributor whose cumulative contributions to the independent expenditure committee for the calendar year are in excess of $200.
  • An itemized statement of each contribution made anonymously to the independent expenditure committee. If the contribution exceeds $10, the independent expenditure committee must specify whether the committee donated the contribution to the common school fund or to a charitable organization and must include the full name and mailing address of the donee.
  • A statement of totals during the reporting period of contributions received and contributions donated.
  • An itemized statement of each loan of money made to the independent expenditure committee in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $20, together with all of the following:
  • The full name and mailing address of the lender.
  • A statement of whether the lender is a commercial lending institution.
  • The date and amount of the loan.
  • The full name and mailing address of each guarantor, if any.
  • The original amount guaranteed by each guarantor.
  • The balance of the amount guaranteed by each guarantor at the end of the reporting period.
  • An itemized statement of every disbursement exceeding $20 in amount or value, together with the name and address of the person to whom the disbursement was made, and the date and specific purpose for which the disbursement was made.
  • An itemized statement of every obligation exceeding $20 in amount or value, together with the name of the person or business with whom the obligation was incurred, and the date and the specific purpose for which each such obligation was incurred.
  • A statement of totals during the reporting period of disbursements made, including transfers made to and received from other committees, other income and loans.
  • A statement of the balance of obligations incurred as of the end of the reporting period.

Independent expenditure committees that spend more than $2,500 on express advocacy in the 60 days before a primary or election must also file a special report documenting their expenditures within 72 hours of making the disbursement. The report must provide all of the following information:

  • The dates on which the committee made the disbursements.
  • The name and address of the persons who received the disbursements.
  • The purpose for making the disbursements.
  • The amount spent for each act of express advocacy.
  • The name of any candidate identified in the express advocacy, the office that the candidate seeks and whether the express advocacy supports or opposes that candidate.
  • An affirmation that the person did not coordinate with any candidate or agent or candidate committee who is supported or opposed by the express advocacy.
  • The name and mailing and street address of the independent expenditure committee’s designated agent in this state.

Any person and political committee spending $2,500 or more in the aggregate on independent expenditures must file a report. The report must include the following information:

  • The dates on which the person made the disbursements.
  • The name and address of the persons who received the disbursements.
  • The purpose for making the disbursements.
  • The amount spent for each act of express advocacy.
  • The name of any candidate identified in the express advocacy, the office that the candidate seeks and whether the express advocacy supports or opposes that candidate.
  • An affirmation that the person did not coordinate with any candidate or agent or candidate committee who is supported or opposed by the express advocacy.
  • The name and mailing and street address of the person’s designated agent in this state.

(Wis. Stat. Ann. §§ 11.1001, 11.0505, Wis. Stat. § 11.0604, Wis. Stat. § 11.1203, Wis. Stat. § 11.0605)

WYOMING

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that is made without consultation or coordination with a candidate, candidate’s campaign committee or the agent of a candidate or candidate’s campaign committee and which expressly advocates the:

  • Nomination, election or defeat of a candidate; or
  • Adoption or defeat of a ballot proposition.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-101)

What Needs to be Reported

An organization that expends in excess of $500 in any primary, general or special election to cause an independent expenditure to be made must file an itemized statement of contributions and expenditure with the secretary of state. The statement must include the following information:

  • Identify the organization causing the independent expenditure to be made and the individual acting on behalf of the organization causing the expenditure to be made, if applicable.
  • Identify which candidate is being supported or opposed by the independent expenditure. 
  • All contribution should be reported, but all contribution $100 or more must be itemized. 
  • The name and address of contributor.
  • The date and amount of contribution.
  • All expenditures should be reported, but all expenditures $500 or more must be itemized.
  • The name and address of payee.
  • The date and amount of expenditure.
  • The purpose of expenditure.
  • Only list those expenditures and contributions which relate to an independent expenditure.

(Wyo. Stat. § 22-25-106)

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure that is:

  • Made for the purpose of promoting or opposing:
  • The nomination or election of a candidate.
  • A political party. or
  • Any initiative, referendum or recall.
  • Not controlled by or coordinated with:
  • Any public official; or
  • Any agent of a public official, including a political committee.
  • Not a contribution to a political committee, political action committee or candidate.

Independent expenditure committee means any committee, club, association, organization or other group of individuals that:

  • Is organized for the purpose of making independent expenditures.
  • Is not controlled by or coordinated with:
  • Any public official; or
  • An agent of a public official, including a political committee.
  • Does not transfer or contribute to:
  • Political committees.
  • Political action committees; or
  • Candidates.

(D.C. Code § 1-1161.01)

What Needs to be Reported

All political committees, political action committees and independent expenditure committees that receives contributions or makes expenditures during a calendar year aggregating more than $50, must file reports of receipts and expenditures. The report must include:

  • The full name and mailing address of the person making the independent expenditure.
  • The purpose and object of the expenditure.
  • The date and amount of expenditure.
  • List any affiliated entities, if any, along with the address.
  • Name of the candidate, ballot measure supported or opposed.
  • The full name and mailing address, including the occupation, employer and the principal place of business, if any, of each person who has made one or more contributions to or for a committee, including the purchase of tickets for events such as dinners, luncheons, rallies and similar fundraising events, within the calendar year in an aggregate amount or value in excess of $50 or more, together with the amount and date of the contributions.

Any person or group other than a political committee, political action committee or independent expenditure committee that makes one or more independent expenditures in an aggregate amount of $1,000 or more within a calendar year must file a report with the Director of Campaign Finance. The report should include:

  • The name and address of the person.
  • The name and address of any of the person’s affiliated entities that have also made an independent expenditure.
  • The amount and purpose of the expenditures.
  • The names of any candidates, initiatives, referenda or recalls in support of or in opposition to which the expenditures are directed.
  • A certification that, to the best of the person’s knowledge, the independent expenditures were not controlled by or coordinated with any public official, political committee affiliated with a public official or an agent of any person.

If the person is not an individual, the report should also include:

  • The person’s principal place of business.
  • The name and address of each person whose total contributions, made for the purpose of making an independent expenditure, to the person reporting during the period covered by the report exceeded $500.
  • The date and amount of each contribution, made for the purpose of making an independent expenditure, by each person whose total contributions to the person reporting during the period covered by the report exceeded $500.

(D.C. Code § 1-1163.13, D.C. Code § 1-1163.09, D.C. Code § 1-1163.07)

PUERTO RICO

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditures or uncoordinated expenditures mean:

  • Expenditure made in such a manner that it may not be reasonably construed in any way other than for election-related purposes.
  • Expenditure which is not or was not made in concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, a political party, aspirant, candidate or campaign committee, authorized agent, representative or committee.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 621)

What Needs to be Reported

Any person or committee making independent expenditures must file a report with the Office of the Secretary of the Election Comptroller. The independent expenditure reports must include the following information:

  • The name, address and telephone number of the person who made or will make the expenditure, as well as the name, address and telephone number of any person who shares or dwells at the address of the person who made or will make the expenditure, and of related organizations, and also the name, address and telephone number of the guardian or guardians of the accounting records and books of the person who made or shall make the expenditure.
  • The address of the main place of business of the person who made or shall make the expenditure, if other than a natural person.
  • The amount and date of each expenditure in excess of $200.
  • The election, referendum, plebiscite or consultation to which the expenditure corresponds and, if applicable, the names of the candidates identified or to be identified, as well as the office for which he/she is running.
  • The names and addresses of all the donors and contributors who contributed an amount that totals or exceeds $1,000 in the aggregate.

(16 L.P.R.A. § 627b)

GUAM

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No information was found on independent expenditures in the Guam Code.

NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS

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Not available

AMERICAN SAMOA

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Not available

VIRGIN ISLANDS

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Definition of Independent Expenditure

Independent expenditure means an expenditure by a person expressly advocating the election or defeat of a candidate which is made without cooperation or consultation with such candidate or any other candidate or any authorized committee or agent of any candidate.

(18 V.I.C. § 902)

What Needs to be Reported

Political committees that receive contributions or makes independent expenditures in excess of $500 or more during an election cycle for the election or defeat of a candidate must file a report with the Office Of Supervisor Of Elections. Any independent expenditure would be filed along with regular expenditure reporting. The report must include the following information:

  • The amount and terms of each loan of over $100 made to the committee and/or candidate during the reporting period and identification of any lender, endorser and guarantor thereof.
  • The total sum of all receipts by or for such committee during the reporting period, less transfers between political committees which provide exclusive support to the same candidate as the reporting committee; provided, however, that all transfers to a committee not required to file reports pursuant to this section shall be deemed an expenditure and shall be reported accordingly.
  • The identification of each person to whom expenditures of over $100 have been made during the reporting period, as well as the purpose of each expenditure, the amount, the date made and the name, address and office sought of each candidate on whose behalf the expenditure was made.
  • The total of all expenditures made during the reporting period not required to be reported otherwise.
  • The amount and nature of debts and obligations owed by the committee, and the circumstances and conditions under which such debts and obligations are extinguished and the consideration.
  • The accumulated total of receipts and expenditures in all reporting periods for or against a candidate in the upcoming election.

Every person, independent of an organized committee, who makes or receives contributions or makes expenditures in an aggregate amount of over $500 during a calendar year, for the express purpose of advocating the election or defeat of a candidate, shall file reports with the Office of the Supervisor of Elections during the reporting periods as required of political committees. The reports should contain:

  • The amount of cash on hand at the beginning of the reporting period.
  • The amount and terms of each loan of over $100 made to the committee and/or candidate during the reporting period and identification of any lender, endorser and guarantor thereof.
  • The total sum of all receipts by or for such committee during the reporting period, less transfers between political committees which provide exclusive support to the same candidate as the reporting committee; provided, however, that all transfers to a committee not required to file reports pursuant to this section shall be deemed