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AB-84 Political Reform Act of 1974: political party committee disclosures.(2017-2018)



Current Version: 07/05/18 - Amended Senate        


AB84:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  July 05, 2018
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 19, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 21, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 84


Introduced by Assembly Member Mullin
(Coauthor: Senator Hill)(Principal coauthors: Assembly Members Rendon and Dahle)

January 05, 2017


An act to amend Sections 316, 340, 1000, 1001, 1201, and 1202 of the Elections Code, relating to elections. An act to amend Sections 84200.6 and 85205 of, and to add Section 84200.10 to, the Government Code, relating to the Political Reform Act of 1974, and declaring the urgency thereof, to take effect immediately.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 84, as amended, Mullin. Primary elections: election date. Political Reform Act of 1974: political party committee disclosures.
(1) The Political Reform Act of 1974 provides for the comprehensive regulation of campaign financing, including requiring the reporting of campaign contributions and expenditures and imposing other reporting and recordkeeping requirements on campaign committees. The act requires elected officers, candidates, and committees to file various reports, including semiannual reports, preelection statements, and supplemental preelection statements.
This bill would additionally require political party committees that receive or contribute $50,000 or more in the year before a regularly scheduled statewide primary or general election to file monthly statements in the subsequent year. The bill would waive this requirement for months in which specified reports under existing law are also filed.
(2) The act defines “political party committee” as the state central committee or county central committee of an organization that meets the requirements for recognition as a political party, as specified.
This bill would add to this definition committees created by a legislative caucus of a house of the Legislature. The bill would provide for the leadership of a legislative caucus committee, as specified. The bill would also provide that a legislative caucus committee is not a controlled committee for purposes of the act, and would regulate the use of bank accounts and funds received by a legislative caucus committee, as specified.
(3) Because a violation of the act is punishable as a misdemeanor, this 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.
(4) 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 of the Legislature and compliance with specified procedural requirements.
This bill would declare that it furthers the purposes of the act.
(5) This bill would declare that it is to take effect immediately as an urgency statute, but would become operative 14 days after its effective date.

Existing law requires that the statewide direct primary election be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in June of an even-numbered year. Existing law requires the presidential primary election to be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in June of a year that is evenly divisible by the number 4, and requires the presidential primary election to be consolidated with the statewide direct primary held in that year.

This bill instead would require that the presidential primary election be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of a year that is evenly divisible by the number 4. The bill would require that the statewide direct primary election be held on that same day in March and consolidated with the presidential primary election during a presidential primary election year. The statewide direct primary election would continue to be held in June of an even-numbered year in which a presidential primary election is not held.

Vote: MAJORITY2/3   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NOYES   Local Program: NOYES  

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


SECTION 1.

 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) The public deserves to receive required campaign finance information in an accurate, timely, and transparent manner.
(b) The public should be able to track money raised and spent by political parties and legislative caucuses.
(c) Increasing the timeliness of reports filed by political parties and legislative caucuses when they are most active improves public access and transparency.
(d) The disclosure of contributors and expenditures by political parties and legislative caucuses serves the following important purposes:
(1) It provides the electorate with information as to where campaign money comes from, increasing its ability to identify the supporters of candidates.
(2) It is an important means of gathering the information necessary to detect violations of the Political Reform Act of 1974.
(3) The people of California have a compelling interest in receiving clear and easy to use information about who is financing political campaigns.

SEC. 2.

 Section 84200.6 of the Government Code is amended to read:

84200.6.
 In addition to the campaign statements required by Sections 84200 and 84200.5, 84200, 84200.5, and 84200.10, all candidates and committees shall file the following special statements and reports:
(a) Late contribution reports, when required by Section 84203.
(b) Late independent expenditure reports, when required by Section 84204.

SEC. 3.

 Section 84200.10 is added to the Government Code, to read:

84200.10.
 (a) During any year in which there is a regularly scheduled statewide primary or general election, a political party committee that received contributions or made expenditures of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) or more during the previous calendar year is required to file monthly reports. Monthly reports are due no later than the 20th day of the month, except that semiannual reports shall be filed by the deadlines specified in subdivision (a) of Section 84200.
(1) A monthly report is not due in any month in which a political party committee files a preelection report pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 84200.5.
(2) The reporting period for monthly reports is the first day of the calendar month through the last day of the calendar month except that monthly reports following preelection statements shall include the day after the last day of the preelection reporting period through the last day of the month in which the preelection report is filed.
(b) The Commission may combine statements and reports pursuant to Section 84205 to avoid additional or unnecessary filings or filings with substantially abbreviated reporting periods.

SEC. 4.

 Section 85205 of the Government Code is amended to read:

85205.
 “ Political (a) “Political party committee” means the state central committee committee, a legislative caucus committee, or county central committee of an organization that meets the requirements for recognition as a political party pursuant to Section 5100 or 5151 of the Elections Code.
(b) Each caucus of each political party of each house of the Legislature may establish no more than one legislative caucus committee. A legislative caucus committee shall be directed by the Speaker of the Assembly, Assembly Minority Leader, President pro Tempore of the Senate, Senate Minority Leader, or the caucus leader of any other recognized political party represented in the Legislature, or his or her designee or designees.
(c) (1) Pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 82016, a legislative caucus committee is not a controlled committee.
(2) For purposes of Section 85201, a bank account established for a legislative caucus committee is not a campaign contribution account of the person who directs the committee or of any other candidate.
(d) Funds received by each legislative caucus committee shall be held in trust to advance the interests of the legislative caucus. Legislative caucus funds may be used to make expenditures associated with the election of members of the Legislature, and for caucus expenses. The authority to direct a legislative caucus committee shall transfer to the successor leader of the legislative caucus described in subdivision (b) at the time the successor assumes office as leader, unless the caucus decides by a majority vote to transfer authority to direct the legislative caucus committee at an earlier time.

SEC. 5.

 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. 6.

 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. 7.

 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 California Constitution and shall go into immediate effect. The facts constituting the necessity are:
In order to ensure transparency in elections, it is necessary that this act take effect immediately.

SEC. 8.

 This act shall become operative 14 days after the effective date of this act.
SECTION 1.

It is the intent of the Legislature that, beginning in 2020, the presidential primary election be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of a presidential primary election year. It is also the intent of the Legislature that the statewide direct primary election be held on that same day during a presidential primary election year, but continue to be held on the first Monday in June of an even-numbered year in which the presidential primary election is not held. This act will not change the date on which the statewide direct primary election will be held in 2018.

SEC. 2.Section 316 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
316.

“Direct primary” is the primary election held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in June of an even-numbered year that is not evenly divisible by the number four, or the primary election held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of a year that is evenly divisible by the number four, to nominate candidates to be voted for at the ensuing general election or to elect members of a party central committee.

SEC. 3.Section 340 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
340.

“Presidential primary” is the primary election that is held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of a year that is evenly divisible by the number four, and at which delegations to national party conventions are to be chosen.

SEC. 4.Section 1000 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
1000.

The established election dates are as follows:

(a)The second Tuesday in April of each even-numbered year.

(b)The first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of each odd-numbered year.

(c)The first Tuesday after the first Monday in June of each year.

(d)The first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of each year.

(e)The first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of each year that is evenly divisible by the number four.

SEC. 5.Section 1001 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
1001.

Elections held in March, June, and November of an even-numbered year are statewide elections and the dates of those elections are statewide election dates.

SEC. 6.Section 1201 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
1201.

The statewide direct primary election shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in June of each even-numbered year that is not evenly divisible by the number four, and on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of each year that is evenly divisible by the number four.

SEC. 7.Section 1202 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
1202.

The presidential primary shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March in a year that is evenly divisible by the number four, and shall be consolidated with the statewide direct primary held in that year.