Campaign Spending; Penalties; Administrative Fines
Establishes penalties for failing to file and for filing substantially defective or deficient campaign spending reports. Provides for deposit of collected fines and penalties into the state general fund. Increases from $2 to $3 the amount of a liability that may be designated on an income tax return to be paid over to the Hawaii election campaign fund. (SB2579 HD1)
TWENTY-FOURTH LEGISLATURE, 2008
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO CAMPAIGN SPENDING.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. Chapter 11, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to subpart B of part XII to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:
"§11- Failure to file report; filing a substantially defective or deficient report. (a) True and accurate reports shall be filed with the commission on or before the due date specified in this subpart. Any committee that is required to file reports under this subpart shall be subject to the penalties in this section if the report is not filed by the due date or if the report is substantially defective or deficient, as determined by the commission.
(b) The penalty for not filing a report by the due date shall be $50 per day for the first seven days, beginning with the day after the due date of the report, and $200 per day thereafter, not to exceed twenty-five per cent of the total amount of contributions or expenditures, whichever is greater, for the period covered by the report; provided that the minimum penalty for a report filed more than four days after the due date shall be $200.
(c) Subsection (b) notwithstanding, if a candidate's committee does not file the second preliminary primary report or the preliminary general report or if a noncandidate committee does not file the preliminary primary report or the preliminary general report by the due date, the fine shall be $300 per day, not to exceed twenty-five per cent of the total amount of contributions or expenditures, whichever is greater, for the period covered by the report; provided that the minimum penalty shall be $300.
(d) If the commission determines that a report is substantially defective or deficient, the commission shall notify the candidate's committee by first class mail that:
(1) The report is substantially defective or deficient; and
(2) A penalty may be assessed.
(e) If the corrected report is not filed with the commission's electronic filing system on or before the fourteenth day after the notice of deficiency has been mailed, the penalty for a substantially defective or deficient report shall be $50 per day for the first seven days, beginning with the fifteenth day after the notice was sent, and $200 per day thereafter, not to exceed twenty-five per cent of the total amount of contributions or expenditures, whichever is greater, for the period covered by the report; provided that the minimum penalty for not filing a corrected report more than eighteen days after the notice was sent shall be $200.
(f) The commission shall publish on its website the names of all candidate's committees that have failed to file a report or to correct a report within the time allowed by the commission.
(g) All penalties collected under this section shall be deposited into the general fund."
SECTION 2. Section 11-193, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (a) to read as follows:
"(a) The duties of the commission under this subpart are:
(1) To develop and adopt reporting forms required by this subpart;
(2) To adopt and publish a manual for all candidates and committees, describing the requirements of this subpart, including uniform and simple methods of recordkeeping;
(3) To preserve all reports required by this subpart for at least ten years from the date of receipt;
(4) To permit the inspection, copying, or duplicating of any report required by this subpart pursuant to rules adopted by the commission; provided that no information or copies from the reports shall be sold or used by any person for the purpose of soliciting contributions or for any commercial purpose;
(5) To ascertain whether any candidate, committee, or
party has failed to file a report required by this subpart or has filed a
substantially defective or deficient report, and to notify these persons by
first class mail that their failure to file or filing of a substantially
defective or deficient report must be corrected and explained, and that a penalty
may be assessed. [
The correction or explanation shall be submitted in
writing to the commission not later than 4:30 p.m. on the fifth day after
notification of the failure to file or deficiency has been mailed to these
persons. The commission shall publish in the newspaper, and on its website,
the names of all candidates, committees, and parties who have failed to file a
report or to correct their deficiency within the time allowed by the
commission. Failure to file or correct a report when due, as required by this
subpart, shall result in a penalty of $50. Failure to respond after a
newspaper notification or website publication shall result in an additional
penalty of $50 for each day a report remains overdue or uncorrected.] All
penalties collected under this section shall be deposited in the [ Hawaii election campaign fund;] general fund of the State;
(6) To hold public hearings;
(7) To investigate and hold hearings for receiving evidence of any violations;
(8) To adopt a code of fair campaign practices as a part of its rules;
(9) To establish rules pursuant to chapter 91;
(10) To request the initiation of prosecution for the violation of this subpart pursuant to section 11‑229;
(11) To administer and monitor the distribution of public funds under this subpart;
(12) To suggest accounting methods for candidates, parties, and committees, as the commission may deem advisable, in connection with reports and records required by this subpart;
(13) To employ or contract, without regard to chapters 76 and 89 and section 28-8.3, and, at pleasure, to dismiss persons it finds necessary for the performance of its functions, including a full-time executive director, and to fix their compensation;
(14) To do random audits[
,] and field
investigations, as necessary;
(15) To file for injunctive relief when indicated; and
(16) To render advisory opinions upon the request of any candidate, candidate committee, noncandidate committee, or other person or entity subject to this chapter, as to whether the facts and circumstances of a particular case constitute or will constitute a violation of the campaign spending laws. If no advisory opinion is rendered within ninety days after all information necessary to issue an opinion has been obtained, it shall be deemed that an advisory opinion was rendered and that the facts and circumstances of that particular case do not constitute a violation of the campaign spending laws. The opinion rendered or deemed rendered, until amended or revoked, shall be binding on the commission in any subsequent charges concerning the candidate, candidate committee, noncandidate committee, or other person or entity subject to this chapter, who sought the opinion and acted in reliance on it in good faith, unless material facts were omitted or misstated by the persons in the request for an advisory opinion."
SECTION 3. Section 11-195, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:
"§11-195 Filing of reports, generally. (a) All reports required to be filed under this subpart by a candidate or those committees directly associated with the candidate's candidacy shall be certified by the candidate and treasurer. Reports required to be filed under this subpart by a party or committee that supports more than one candidate shall be certified by a person authorized to sign the reports. All reports required to be filed under this subpart shall be open for public inspection in the office of the commission.
(b) The original and one copy of all reports
required under this subpart shall be filed at the office of the commission. [
the case of counties having less than two hundred thousand voters, the filing
shall be accomplished by filing an original and two copies of the required
report with either the commission or the clerk of the county in which the candidate
resides. The clerk shall then immediately mail the original and one copy of
the report to the commission.]
(c) The commission [
or county clerk]
shall give each person filing a report a receipt stating the type of report filed
and the date and time of filing.
(d) All reports filed with the county
clerk's office shall be preserved by that office for four years from the date
(e)] (d) All reports required
to be filed under this subpart shall at all times be available to the general
(f)] (e) For purposes of this
subpart, whenever a report is required to be filed with the commission,
"filed" means received in the office of the commission [ or county
clerk, whichever is applicable,] by the date and time specified for the
filing of the report; except that a noncandidate committee required to be
registered with the commission pursuant to section 11-194(d), and a candidate
or the committee of a candidate who is seeking election to the:
(1) Office of governor;
(2) Office of lieutenant governor;
(3) Office of mayor;
(4) Office of prosecuting attorney;
(5) County council;
(7) House of representatives;
(8) Office of Hawaiian affairs; or
(9) Board of education,
shall file by electronic means in the manner prescribed by the commission.
SECTION 4. Section 11-216, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (f) to read as follows:
"(f) If the commission renders a final determination of violation, its written decision with findings of fact and conclusions of law may also provide, without limitation the following orders:
(1) The return of any contribution;
(2) The reimbursement of any unauthorized expenditure;
(3) The payment of any administrative fine payable to
Hawaii election campaign fund;] general fund of the
(4) Cease and desist violation of this subpart; or
(5) File any report, statement, or other information as required by this subpart."
SECTION 5. Section 11-228, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (d) to read as follows:
"(d) Any administrative fine collected by
the commission shall be deposited [
in the Hawaii election campaign fund.]
into the general fund of the State of Hawaii."
SECTION 6. Section 235-102.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (a) to read as follows:
"§235-102.5 Income check-off
authorized. (a) Any individual whose state income tax liability for any
taxable year is [
$2] $3 or more may designate [ $2] $3
of the liability to be paid over to the Hawaii election campaign fund, any
other law to the contrary notwithstanding, when submitting a state income tax
return to the department. In the case of a joint return of a husband and wife
having a state income tax liability of [ $4] $6 or more, each
spouse may designate that [ $2] $3 be paid to the fund. The
director of taxation shall revise the individual state income tax form to allow
the designation of contributions to the fund on the face of the tax return and
immediately above the signature lines. An explanation shall be included which
clearly states that the check-off does not constitute an additional tax
liability. If no designation was made on the original tax return when filed, a
designation may be made by the individual on an amended return filed within
twenty months and ten days after the due date for the original return for such
taxable year. A designation once made whether by an original or amended return
may not be revoked."
SECTION 7. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 8. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050.