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SB-1379 Political reform.(2013-2014)

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SB1379:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  June 16, 2014
Amended  IN  Senate  May 28, 2014

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2013–2014 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 1379


Introduced by Senator Huff
(Coauthors: Senators Berryhill, Cannella, Fuller, Gaines, Knight, Morrell, Nielsen, Vidak, Walters, and Wyland)

February 21, 2014


An act to amend Sections 85305, 89513, 89514, and 89518 of, and to add Sections 84208, 85301.7, 85305.1, and 86205.5, and 89514.5 to, the Government Code, and to amend Sections 68 and 86 of the Penal Code, relating to political reform, and declaring the urgency thereof, to take effect immediately.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 1379, as amended, Huff. Political reform.
Existing law, the Political Reform Act of 1974, provides for the comprehensive regulation of campaign financing, including requiring the reporting of campaign contributions. The act imposes a contribution limit of $3,000 on contributions made to, and received by, candidates for elective state offices that are not statewide elective offices. The act is administered and enforced by the Fair Political Practices Commission, which is authorized to adjust the contribution limit to reflect changes in the Consumer Price Index, as specified. The act does not limit the amount of contributions that a person may make to a committee that is primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures. The act prohibits a candidate for elective state office or a committee controlled by that candidate from making a contribution to another candidate for elective state office in excess of the contribution limit for elective state offices.
The act imposes various restrictions and reporting requirements on Members of the Legislature and candidates for either house of the Legislature, including prohibiting or restricting earned income from a lobbyist or lobbyist employer, restricting the receipt of gifts, and restricting the purposes for which campaign funds may be expended.
This bill would prohibit a person from making to a committee controlled by a candidate for elective office that is primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures, and prohibit such a committee from receiving, a contribution in excess of the contribution limit for elective state offices, as specified. The bill would prohibit a candidate for any elective office, or the candidate’s controlled committees, from making a contribution to another candidate for elective office or a committee controlled by a candidate that is primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures in excess of the contribution limit established for candidates for elective state office.
This bill would prohibit a committee controlled by a candidate for elective office that is primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures from expending campaign funds to make a contribution or other transfer of campaign funds to a committee for a purpose other than supporting or opposing a ballot measure that the controlled committee was primarily formed to support or oppose.
This bill would prohibit a lobbyist or lobbyist employer from providing any compensation to a spouse or dependent of a Member or candidate, except as specified. The bill would prohibit campaign funds from being used to compensate a spouse or dependent of a Member of the Legislature or of a candidate for either house of the Legislature. The bill would prohibit the use of campaign funds from being used to pay a fine, a penalty, or legal fees arising out of a criminal violation or to pay a spouse or dependent of a Member of the Legislature or a candidate for either house of the Legislature, except as specified. This bill would prohibit the expenditure of campaign funds for attorney’s fees and other costs in connection with criminal litigation, and would limit the payment of criminal litigation attorney’s fees and other related legal costs arising directly out of the conduct of an election campaign, the electoral process, or the performance of the officer’s governmental activities or duties to funds deposited in a legal defense account created pursuant to other specified provisions of law. The bill would also prohibit a committee that is not a legal defense committee from making an expenditure of campaign funds to any legal defense account.
This bill would require a Member of the Legislature or a candidate for either house of the Legislature to report to the Secretary of State a contribution of one thousand dollars ($1,000) or greater within three business days of receipt of the contribution.
A violation of the act’s provisions is punishable as a misdemeanor. By expanding the scope of an existing crime, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
Existing law subjects any member of the Legislature or any member of the legislative body of a city, county, city and county, school district, or other special district, and every executive or ministerial officer, employee, or appointee of the state, a county or city, or political subdivision, who asks for or receives a bribe in exchange for influence over his or her official action to imprisonment in a state prison for 2, 3, or 4 years, and imposes prescribed restitution fines based on whether a bribe has actually been received.
This bill would increase the punishment to 4, 6, or 8 years in state prison and would increase the restitution fines to twice the original amount.
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.
This bill would declare that it is to take effect immediately as an urgency statute.
Vote: 2/3   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

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


SECTION 1.

 This act shall be known and may be cited as the Legislative Reform and Transparency Act of 2014.

SEC. 2.

 Section 84208 is added to the Government Code, to read:

84208.
 In addition to any other reporting requirements of this title, a Member of the Legislature or a candidate for either house of the Legislature who is subject to the online or electronic filing requirements set forth in Section 84605 shall report to the Secretary of State online or electronically a contribution of one thousand dollars ($1,000) or greater within three business days of receipt of the contribution.

SEC. 3.

 Section 85301.7 is added to the Government Code, to read:

85301.7.
 A For each period between statewide general elections, as defined in Section 1200 of the Elections Code, a person shall not make to a committee controlled by a candidate for elective office that is primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures, and such a committee shall not accept from a person, a contribution in excess of the contribution limit established pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 85301, as adjusted by the Commission pursuant to Section 83124. The contribution limit described in this section shall be the aggregate amount of contributions that a candidate may accept per contributor for his or her controlled committees that are primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures, regardless of the number of such committees controlled by that candidate.

SEC. 4.

 Section 85305 of the Government Code is amended to read:

85305.
 A candidate for elective office or a committee controlled by that candidate shall not make a contribution to another candidate for elective office or to a committee controlled by another candidate for elective office that is primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures in excess of the limit established pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 85301, as adjusted pursuant to Section 83124.

SEC. 5.

 Section 85305.1 is added to the Government Code, to read:

85305.1.
 Notwithstanding any other provision of this title or Section 18680 of the Elections Code, a committee controlled by a candidate for elective office that is primarily formed to support or oppose one or more ballot measures shall not expend campaign funds to make a contribution or other transfer of campaign funds to a committee for a purpose other than supporting or opposing a ballot measure that the controlled committee was primarily formed to support or oppose.

SEC. 6.

 Section 86205.5 is added to the Government Code, to read:

86205.5.
 A lobbyist or lobbyist employer shall not provide any compensation to a spouse or dependent of a Member of the Legislature or a candidate for either house of the Legislature, unless the compensation is for services performed in the ordinary course of business or employment that is unrelated to an election, campaign activity, or services provided for either house of the Legislature.

SEC. 7.Section 89513 of the Government Code is amended to read:
89513.

This section governs the use of campaign funds for the specific expenditures set forth in this section. It is the intent of the Legislature that this section shall guide the interpretation of the standard imposed by Section 89512 as applied to other expenditures not specifically set forth in this section.

(a)(1)Campaign funds shall not be used to pay or reimburse the candidate, the elected officer, or any individual or individuals with authority to approve the expenditure of campaign funds held by a committee, or employees or staff of the committee or the elected officer’s governmental agency for travel expenses and necessary accommodations except when these expenditures are directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose.

(2)For the purposes of this section, payments or reimbursements for travel and necessary accommodations shall be considered as directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose if the payments would meet standards similar to the standards of the Internal Revenue Service pursuant to Sections 162 and 274 of the Internal Revenue Code for deductions of travel expenses under the federal income tax law.

(3)For the purposes of this section, payments or reimbursement for travel by the household of a candidate or elected officer when traveling to the same destination in order to accompany the candidate or elected officer shall be considered for the same purpose as the candidate’s or elected officer’s travel.

(4)Whenever campaign funds are used to pay or reimburse a candidate, elected officer, his or her representative, or a member of the candidate’s household for travel expenses and necessary accommodations, the expenditure shall be reported as required by Section 84211.

(5)Whenever campaign funds are used to pay or reimburse for travel expenses and necessary accommodations, any mileage credit that is earned or awarded pursuant to an airline bonus mileage program shall be deemed personally earned by or awarded to the individual traveler. Neither the earning or awarding of mileage credit, nor the redeeming of credit for actual travel, shall be subject to reporting pursuant to Section 84211.

(b)(1)Campaign funds shall not be used to pay for or reimburse the cost of professional services unless the services are directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose.

(2)Expenditures by a committee to pay for professional services reasonably required by the committee to assist it in the performance of its administrative functions are directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose.

(3)Campaign funds shall not be used to pay health-related expenses for a candidate, elected officer, or any individual or individuals with authority to approve the expenditure of campaign funds held by a committee, or members of his or her household. “Health-related expenses” includes, but is not limited to, examinations by physicians, dentists, psychiatrists, psychologists, or counselors, expenses for medications, treatments or medical equipment, and expenses for hospitalization, health club dues, and special dietary foods. However, campaign funds may be used to pay employer costs of health care benefits of a bona fide employee or independent contractor of the committee.

(c)Campaign funds shall not be used to pay or reimburse fines, penalties, judgments, or settlements, except those resulting from either of the following:

(1)Parking citations incurred in the performance of an activity that was directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose.

(2)Any other action for which payment of attorney’s fees from contributions would be permitted pursuant to this title.

(d)Campaign funds shall not be used for campaign, business, or casual clothing except specialty clothing that is not suitable for everyday use, including, but not limited to, formal wear, if this attire is to be worn by the candidate or elected officer and is directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose.

(e)(1)Except where otherwise prohibited by law, campaign funds may be used to purchase or reimburse for the costs of purchase of tickets to political fundraising events for the attendance of a candidate, elected officer, or his or her immediate family, or an officer, director, employee, or staff of the committee or the elected officer’s governmental agency.

(2)Campaign funds shall not be used to pay for or reimburse for the costs of tickets for entertainment or sporting events for the candidate, elected officer, or members of his or her immediate family, or an officer, director, employee, or staff of the committee, unless their attendance at the event is directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose.

(3)The purchase of tickets for entertainment or sporting events for the benefit of persons other than the candidate, elected officer, or his or her immediate family are governed by subdivision (f).

(f)(1)Campaign funds shall not be used to make personal gifts unless the gift is directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose. The refund of a campaign contribution does not constitute the making of a gift.

(2)Nothing in this section shall prohibit the use of campaign funds to reimburse or otherwise compensate a public employee for services rendered to a candidate or committee while on vacation, leave, or otherwise outside of compensated public time.

(3)An election victory celebration or similar campaign event, or gifts with a total cumulative value of less than two hundred fifty dollars ($250) in a single year made to an individual employee, a committee worker, or an employee of the elected officer’s agency, are considered to be directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose. For purposes of this paragraph, a gift to a member of a person’s immediate family shall be deemed to be a gift to that person.

(g)Campaign funds shall not be used to make loans other than to organizations pursuant to Section 89515, or, unless otherwise prohibited, to a candidate for elective office, political party, or committee.

(h)Campaign funds shall not be used by a Member of the Legislature or a candidate for either house of the Legislature to pay a fine, a penalty, or legal fees arising out of a criminal violation or an alleged criminal violation unless those campaign funds are received or expended by a committee for the legal defense of the Member or candidate.

SEC. 7.

 Section 89514 of the Government Code is amended to read:

89514.
 Expenditures of campaign funds for attorney’s fees and other costs in connection with administrative, civil, or criminal administrative or civil litigation are not directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose except where the litigation is directly related to activities of a committee that are consistent with its primary objectives or arises directly out of a committee’s activities or out of a candidate’s or elected officer’s activities, duties, or status as a candidate or elected officer, including, but not limited to, an action to enjoin defamation, defense of an action to enjoin defamation, defense of an action brought for a violation of state or local campaign, disclosure, or election laws, and an action arising from an election contest or recount.

SEC. 8.

 Section 89514.5 is added to the Government Code, to read:

89514.5.
 (a) Expenditures of campaign funds for attorney’s fees and other costs in connection with criminal litigation are not directly related to a political, legislative, or governmental purpose.
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), attorney’s fees and other related legal costs incurred in connection with criminal litigation arising directly out of the conduct of an election campaign, the electoral process, or the performance of the officer’s governmental activities or duties may be paid for using funds deposited in a legal defense account created pursuant to Section 85304 or 85304.5.
(c) A committee that is not a legal defense committee shall not make an expenditure of campaign funds to a legal defense account created pursuant to Section 85304 or 85304.5.

SEC. 8.SEC. 9.

 Section 89518 of the Government Code is amended to read:

89518.
 (a) Campaign funds shall not be used to compensate a candidate or elected officer for the performance of political, legislative, or governmental activities, except for reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses incurred for political, legislative, or governmental purposes.
(b) Campaign funds shall not be used to compensate any individual or individuals with authority to approve the expenditure of campaign funds for the performance of political, legislative, or governmental activities, except as provided in subdivision (b) of Section 89513 and for reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses incurred for political, legislative, or governmental purposes.
(c) Campaign funds of a Member of the Legislature or of a candidate for either house of the Legislature shall not be used to compensate the spouse or a dependent of the Member or candidate.

SEC. 9.SEC. 10.

 Section 68 of the Penal Code is amended to read:

68.
 (a) Every executive or ministerial officer, employee, or appointee of the State of California, a city, county, city and county therein, or a political subdivision thereof, who asks, receives, or agrees to receive, any bribe, upon any agreement or understanding that his or her vote, opinion, or action upon any matter then pending, or that may be brought before him or her in his or her official capacity, shall be influenced thereby, is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for four, six, or eight years and, in cases in which no bribe has been actually received, by a restitution fine of not less than four thousand dollars ($4,000) or not more than twenty thousand dollars ($20,000) or, in cases in which a bribe was actually received, by a restitution fine of at least the actual amount of the bribe received or four thousand dollars ($4,000), whichever is greater, or any larger amount of not more than double the amount of any bribe received or twenty thousand dollars ($20,000), whichever is greater, and, in addition thereto, forfeits his or her office, employment, or appointment, and is forever disqualified from holding any office, employment, or appointment, in this state.
(b) In imposing a restitution fine pursuant to this section, the court shall consider the defendant’s ability to pay the fine.

SEC. 10.SEC. 11.

 Section 86 of the Penal Code is amended to read:

86.
 (a) Every Member of either house of the Legislature, or any member of the legislative body of a city, county, city and county, school district, or other special district, who asks, receives, or agrees to receive, any bribe, upon any understanding that his or her official vote, opinion, judgment, or action shall be influenced thereby, or shall give, in any particular manner, or upon any particular side of any question or matter upon which he or she may be required to act in his or her official capacity, or gives, or offers or promises to give, any official vote in consideration that another Member of the Legislature, or another member of the legislative body of a city, county, city and county, school district, or other special district shall give this vote either upon the same or another question, is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for four, six, or eight years and, in cases in which no bribe has been actually received, by a restitution fine of not less than four thousand dollars ($4,000) or not more than twenty thousand dollars ($20,000) or, in cases in which a bribe was actually received, by a restitution fine of at least the actual amount of the bribe received or four thousand dollars ($4,000), whichever is greater, or any larger amount of not more than double the amount of any bribe received or twenty thousand dollars ($20,000), whichever is greater.
(b) In imposing a fine under this section, the court shall consider the defendant’s ability to pay the fine.

SEC. 11.SEC. 12.

 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. 12.SEC. 13.

 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.

SEC. 13.SEC. 14.

 This act is an urgency statute necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety within the meaning of Article IV of the Constitution and shall go into immediate effect. The facts constituting the necessity are:
In order to implement these proposals at the earliest possible time before the 2014 general election, it is necessary that this act take immediate effect.