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Campaign finance requirements for Louisiana ballot measures

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Campaign finance requirements for Louisiana ballot measures are promulgated by the Louisiana Ethics Administration Program. The Supervisory Committee of the Ethics Administration Program has exclusive authority over the state's campaign finance laws. The Supervisory Committee is also responsible for all reporting and administrative functions of Louisiana's campaign finance laws.

If any person feels that person or committee may be in violation of Louisiana campaign finance laws, their first step is to file a complaint with the Supervisory Committee of the Ethics Administration Program[1]. Upon receipt of complaint, a two-third vote from the Supervisory Committee is required to certify any complaint[2].

If someone is found in violation of campaign finance laws, the Ethics Administration Program can impose a monetary fine for civil violations through a civil court action[3]. All criminal law violations are referred to either the Attorney General or the prosecuting attorney in the parish that the offense happened[4].

General requirements

PAC Designation

All groups registered in support or opposition of a proposition in the State of Louisiana are considered to be Political Action Committees[5].

Personal registration requirement

Any person that plans to spend $200 or more in support or opposition of a ballot proposition must file a Statement of Organization with the Supervisory Committee of the Louisiana Ethics Administration Program[6].

Statement of Organization

There are two deadlines for filing a Statement of Organization for Political Action Committees. There is open registration in which Political Action Committees can register anytime from January 1st to January 31st if they plan to expend or raise $500 or more. Any registrations past January 31st must be filed within ten days of reaching the $500 threshold[7]. This must be filed with the Supervisory Committee of the Ethics Administration Program.

The $200 in 48 hours rule

Louisiana requires all PAC's in support or opposition of a ballot measure to report all contributions of $200 or more, within 48 hours to the Louisiana Ethics Administration Program[8]. This is required during the last twenty days before the election[9].

Campaign finance requirements

Anonymous contributions

Louisiana strictly bans all anonymous contributions regardless of how large or small the contribution is[10].

Cash contribution limit

Louisiana limits all cash contributions to $100 per year, per contributor[11].

Casino contribution ban

Any person that owns a casino or holds casino gaming permits are prohibited from donating to a Political Action Committee in support or opposition of a ballot proposition[12].

Contribution limits

There are no limits on contributions to Political Action Committees in support or opposition of a ballot proposition [13] [14].

Corporate/labor union contributions

Louisiana allows corporations and labor unions to donate Political Action Committees in support or opposition of a ballot proposition[15].

Reporting requirements and reports

Louisiana uses a pre and post-election reporting system for committees influencing the passage or defeat of a ballot proposition. All reporting deadlines are the same if a committee is influencing a proposition during the general or primary election.

30 day pre-election

The 30 day pre-election report is the first pre-election report for a PAC. Also, this is the first campaign finance report of the election cycle. For 2010, the report covers all campaign finance activity from when a committee first formed up to 40 days before the election[8]. The report is due 30 days before the election[8] [16].

10 day pre-election

The 10 day pre-election report is the second pre-election report for a PAC. For 2010, the report covers all campaign finance activity from thirty-nine days before the election up to twenty days before the election[8]. The report is due 10 days before the election[17] [8].

The 10 day pre-election report is considered to be the last report for PAC's influencing propositions during the primary election[18].

40 day post-election

The 40 day post-election report covers all campaign finance activity from 19 days before the general election up to 30 days after the election[8]. The report is due 40 days after the election[8]. This report is considered to be the last report for PAC's influencing propositions during the general election[19].

Supplemental report

The Supplemental report is a additional report for PAC's that have outstanding debt past the normal reporting deadlines. The report covers all activity from 31 days after the election up to December 31st. The report is due on February 15th[20] [8]. If any outstanding debt still happens after an election year, a supplemental report must be filed by February 15th annually until all debts are retired[20]. The reporting period for outstanding supplemental reports is from January 1st to December 31st[20].

Campaign advertising restrictions

All electioneering communications and advertisements must clearly state who paid for the advertisement. The ad shall state in full (with no acronyms) who paid for the ad for an ad sponsored by a Political Action Committee. All ads paid for by other committees must clearly state if the ad was authorized or not authorized by the committee supporting or opposing the proposition. All ads by other committees that were approved by a committee follow the same disclaimer requirement other PAC's follow[21].

All electioneering communications that were not approved by any committee must disclose the full name, address, phone number, and website address of the committee paying for the ad[22].

Louisiana bans all committees from engaging in intentional misrepresentation in any campaign ad[23].

Advertising agencies must be charge political advertisements the same rate like other commercial businesses are charged[24].

Terminating a committee

A Political Action Committee can terminate when they have the expectation of no longer receiving any contributions or making expenditures. Also, all debts must be paid off. The statement of termination must be certified by the committee's Treasurer and Chairperson[25].

Also, a terminated committee cannot reorganize under a modified name as a way to avoid the termination requirements[26].

External links

References

  1. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1511.2(A) 1, Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  2. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1511.4(A), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  3. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1511.5(A) 1,(B), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  4. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1511.6(A)-(B) Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  5. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1483 (14)(a)(ii), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  6. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1486(B), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  7. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1491(A), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 Louisiana Ethics Administration Program "2010 Proposition Election Reporting Calendar"
  9. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Campaign Finance Law"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.6(C)-2)
  10. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1505.2 (B) 1 Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  11. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1505.2 (C) 1 Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  12. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1505.2 (C) 1 Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  13. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1505.2 (H), (K) Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  14. Louisiana Ethics Administration Program "2009 PAC Summary"(See Page 8)
  15. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statutes 18:1505.2 (3)(a)(ii), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  16. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.6(B)-(3))
  17. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.6(B)-(4))
  18. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.6(B)-(5))
  19. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.6(B)-(6))
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.6(D)-(1))
  21. Louisiana Legislature Louisiana Revised Statutes "Louisiana Campaign Finance Law"(Referenced Statute 18:1463(2) (a-b), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  22. Louisiana Legislature Louisiana Revised Statutes "Louisiana Campaign Finance Law"(Referenced Statute 18:1463(2) (c), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  23. Louisiana Legislature Louisiana Revised Statutes "Louisiana Campaign Finance Law"(Referenced Statute 18:1463(4)(a), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  24. Louisiana Legislature Louisiana Revised Statutes "Louisiana Campaign Finance Law"(Referenced Statute 18:1464(A), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  25. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.2(A), Louisiana Revised Statutes)
  26. Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Revised Statutes"(Referenced Statute 18:1491.2(B), Louisiana Revised Statutes)