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AB-9 Political Reform Act of 1974: expenditures.(2009-2010)

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Assembly Bill No. 9
CHAPTER 363

An act to amend Sections 82015 and 82031 of the Government Code, relating to the Political Reform Act of 1974.

[ Approved by Governor  October 11, 2009. Filed with Secretary of State  October 11, 2009. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 9, John A. Perez. Political Reform Act of 1974: expenditures.
Under the Political Reform Act of 1974, a “contribution” means a payment, a forgiveness of a loan, a payment of a loan by a 3rd party, or an enforceable promise to make a payment, except to the extent that full and adequate consideration is received, unless it is clear from the surrounding circumstances that it is not made for political purposes. Under the act, an “independent expenditure” is an expenditure 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. A candidate or committee that makes an independent expenditure totaling $1,000 or more in a calendar year to support or oppose a measure or qualification of a measure is required to file a report of that disclosure with the Fair Political Practices Commission. A person who violates the act is subject to administrative, civil, and criminal penalties.
This bill would provide that a contribution includes the payment of public moneys by a state or local governmental agency for a communication to the public 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, and which is made at the behest of the affected candidate or committee. The bill would further provide that an independent expenditure includes the payment of public moneys by a state or local governmental agency. By placing administrative, civil, and criminal penalties on persons who violate this bill, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
The Political Reform Act of 1974, an initiative measure, provides that the Legislature may amend the act to further the act’s purposes upon a 2/3 vote of each house and compliance with specified procedural requirements.
This bill would declare that it furthers the purposes of the act.
Vote: 2/3   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 82015 of the Government Code is amended to read:

82015.
 (a) “Contribution” means a payment, a forgiveness of a loan, a payment of a loan by a third party, or an enforceable promise to make a payment except to the extent that full and adequate consideration is received, unless it is clear from the surrounding circumstances that it is not made for political purposes.
(b) (1) A payment made at the behest of a committee as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 82013 is a contribution to the committee unless full and adequate consideration is received from the committee for making the payment.
(2) A payment made at the behest of a candidate is a contribution to the candidate unless the criteria in either subparagraph (A) or (B) are satisfied:
(A) Full and adequate consideration is received from the candidate.
(B) It is clear from the surrounding circumstances that the payment was made for purposes unrelated to his or her candidacy for elective office. The following types of payments are presumed to be for purposes unrelated to a candidate’s candidacy for elective office:
(i) A payment made principally for personal purposes, in which case it may be considered a gift under the provisions of Section 82028. Payments that are otherwise subject to the limits of Section 86203 are presumed to be principally for personal purposes.
(ii) A payment made by a state, local, or federal governmental agency or by a nonprofit organization that is exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
(iii) A payment not covered by clause (i), made principally for legislative, governmental, or charitable purposes, in which case it is neither a gift nor a contribution. However, payments of this type that are made at the behest of a candidate who is an elected officer shall be reported within 30 days following the date on which the payment or payments equal or exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) in the aggregate from the same source in the same calendar year in which they are made. The report shall be filed by the elected officer with the elected officer’s agency and shall be a public record subject to inspection and copying pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 81008. The report shall contain the following information: name of payor, address of payor, amount of the payment, date or dates the payment or payments were made, the name and address of the payee, a brief description of the goods or services provided or purchased, if any, and a description of the specific purpose or event for which the payment or payments were made. Once the five-thousand-dollar ($5,000) aggregate threshold from a single source has been reached for a calendar year, all payments for the calendar year made by that source must be disclosed within 30 days after the date the threshold was reached or the payment was made, whichever occurs later. Within 30 days after receipt of the report, state agencies shall forward a copy of these reports to the Fair Political Practices Commission, and local agencies shall forward a copy of these reports to the officer with whom elected officers of that agency file their campaign statements.
(C) For purposes of subparagraph (B), a payment is made for purposes related to a candidate’s candidacy for elective office if all or a portion of the payment is used for election-related activities. For purposes of this subparagraph, “election-related activities” shall include, but are not limited to, the following:
(i) Communications that contain express advocacy of the nomination or election of the candidate or the defeat of his or her opponent.
(ii) Communications that contain reference to the candidate’s candidacy for elective office, the candidate’s election campaign, or the candidate’s or his or her opponent’s qualifications for elective office.
(iii) Solicitation of contributions to the candidate or to third persons for use in support of the candidate or in opposition to his or her opponent.
(iv) Arranging, coordinating, developing, writing, distributing, preparing, or planning of any communication or activity described in clause (i), (ii), or (iii).
(v) Recruiting or coordinating campaign activities of campaign volunteers on behalf of the candidate.
(vi) Preparing campaign budgets.
(vii) Preparing campaign finance disclosure statements.
(viii) Communications directed to voters or potential voters as part of activities encouraging or assisting persons to vote if the communication contains express advocacy of the nomination or election of the candidate or the defeat of his or her opponent.
(D) A contribution made at the behest of a candidate for a different candidate or to a committee not controlled by the behesting candidate is not a contribution to the behesting candidate.
(3) A payment made at the behest of a member of the Public Utilities Commission, made principally for legislative, governmental, or charitable purposes, is not a contribution. However, payments of this type shall be reported within 30 days following the date on which the payment or payments equal or exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) in the aggregate from the same source in the same calendar year in which they are made. The report shall be filed by the member with the Public Utilities Commission and shall be a public record subject to inspection and copying pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 81008. The report shall contain the following information: name of payor, address of payor, amount of the payment, date or dates the payment or payments were made, the name and address of the payee, a brief description of the goods or services provided or purchased, if any, and a description of the specific purpose or event for which the payment or payments were made. Once the five-thousand-dollar ($5,000) aggregate threshold from a single source has been reached for a calendar year, all payments for the calendar year made by that source must be disclosed within 30 days after the date the threshold was reached or the payment was made, whichever occurs later. Within 30 days after receipt of the report, the Public Utilities Commission shall forward a copy of these reports to the Fair Political Practices Commission.
(c) “Contribution” includes the purchase of tickets for events such as dinners, luncheons, rallies, and similar fundraising events; the candidate’s own money or property used on behalf of his or her candidacy other than personal funds of the candidate used to pay either a filing fee for a declaration of candidacy or a candidate statement prepared pursuant to Section 13307 of the Elections Code; the granting of discounts or rebates not extended to the public generally or the granting of discounts or rebates by television and radio stations and newspapers not extended on an equal basis to all candidates for the same office; the payment of compensation by any person for the personal services or expenses of any other person if the services are rendered or expenses incurred on behalf of a candidate or committee without payment of full and adequate consideration.
(d) “Contribution” further includes any transfer of anything of value received by a committee from another committee, unless full and adequate consideration is received.
(e) “Contribution” does not include amounts received pursuant to an enforceable promise to the extent those amounts have been previously reported as a contribution. However, the fact that those amounts have been received shall be indicated in the appropriate campaign statement.
(f) “Contribution” does not include a payment made by an occupant of a home or office for costs related to any meeting or fundraising event held in the occupant’s home or office if the costs for the meeting or fundraising event are five hundred dollars ($500) or less.
(g) Notwithstanding the foregoing definition of “contribution,” the term does not include volunteer personal services or payments made by any individual for his or her own travel expenses if the payments are made voluntarily without any understanding or agreement that they shall be, directly or indirectly, repaid to him or her.
(h) “Contribution” further includes the payment of public moneys by a state or local governmental agency for a communication to the public that satisfies both of the following:
(1) The communication 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.
(2) The communication is made at the behest of the affected candidate or committee.

SEC. 2.

 Section 82031 of the Government Code is amended to read:

82031.
 “Independent expenditure” means an expenditure made by any person, including a payment of public moneys 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.

SEC. 3.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.

SEC. 4.

 The Legislature finds and declares that this bill furthers the purposes of the Political Reform Act of 1974 within the meaning of subdivision (a) of Section 81012 of the Government Code.