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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Chapter 10A

Section 10A.20

Recent History

10A.20 Campaign reports.

Subdivision 1. The treasurer of every political committee and political fund shall begin to file the reports required by this section in the first year it receives contributions or makes expenditures in excess of $100 and shall continue to file until the committee or fund is terminated.

Subd. 2. Time for filing. The reports shall be filed with the board on or before January 31 of each year and additional reports shall be filed as required and in accordance with clauses (a) and (b).

(a) In each year in which the name of the candidate is on the ballot, the report of the principal campaign committee shall be filed 15 days before a primary and ten days before a general election, seven days before a special primary and a special election, and ten days after a special election cycle. The report due after a special election may be filed on January 31 following the special election if the special election is held not more than 60 days before that date.

(b) In each general election year political committees and political funds other than principal campaign committees shall file reports ten days before a primary and general election.

If a scheduled filing date falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, the filing date shall be the next regular business day.

Subd. 3. Contents of report. Each report under this section shall disclose:

(a) The amount of liquid assets on hand at the beginning of the reporting period;

(b) The name, address and employer, or occupation if self-employed, of each individual, political committee or political fund who within the year has made one or more transfers or donations in kind to the political committee or political fund, including the purchase of tickets for all fund raising efforts, which in aggregate exceed $100 for legislative or statewide candidates or ballot questions, together with the amount and date of each transfer or donation in kind, and the aggregate amount of transfers and donations in kind within the year from each source so disclosed. A donation in kind shall be disclosed at its fair market value. An approved expenditure is listed as a donation in kind. A donation in kind is considered consumed in the reporting period in which it is received. The names of contributors shall be listed in alphabetical order;

(c) The sum of contributions to the political committee or political fund during the reporting period;

(d) Each loan made or received by the political committee or political fund within the year in aggregate in excess of $100, continuously reported until repaid or forgiven, together with the name, address, occupation and the principal place of business, if any, of the lender and any endorser and the date and amount of the loan. If any loan made to the principal campaign committee of a candidate is forgiven at any time or repaid by any entity other than that principal campaign committee, it shall be reported as a contribution for the year in which the loan was made;

(e) Each receipt in excess of $100 not otherwise listed under clauses (b) to (d);

(f) The sum of all receipts of the political committee or political fund during the reporting period;

(g) The name and address of each individual or association to whom aggregate expenditures, including approved expenditures, have been made by or on behalf of the political committee or political fund within the year in excess of $100, together with the amount, date and purpose of each expenditure and the name and address of, and office sought by, each candidate on whose behalf the expenditure was made, identification of the ballot question which the expenditure is intended to promote or defeat, and in the case of independent expenditures made in opposition to a candidate, the name, address and office sought for each such candidate;

(h) The sum of all expenditures made by or on behalf of the political committee or political fund during the reporting period;

(i) The amount and nature of any advance of credit incurred by the political committee or political fund, continuously reported until paid or forgiven. If any advance of credit incurred by the principal campaign committee of a candidate is forgiven at any time by the creditor or paid by any entity other than that principal campaign committee, it shall be reported as a donation in kind for the year in which the advance of credit was incurred;

(j) The name and address of each political committee, political fund, or principal campaign committee to which aggregate transfers in excess of $100 have been made within the year, together with the amount and date of each transfer;

(k) The sum of all transfers made by the political committee, political fund, or principal campaign committee during the reporting period;

(l) Except for contributions to a candidate or committee for a candidate for office in a municipality as defined in section 471.345, subdivision 1, the name and address of each individual or association to whom aggregate noncampaign disbursements in excess of $100 have been made within the year by or on behalf of a principal campaign committee, political committee, or political fund, together with the amount, date, and purpose of each noncampaign disbursement;

(m) The sum of all noncampaign disbursements made within the year by or on behalf of a principal campaign committee, political committee, or political fund;

(n) The name and address of a nonprofit corporation that provides administrative assistance to a political committee or political fund as authorized by section 211B.15, subdivision 17, together with the type of administrative assistance provided and the aggregate fair market value of each type of assistance provided to the political committee or political fund during the reporting period; and

(o) A report filed under subdivision 2, clause (b), by a political committee or political fund that is subject to subdivision 14, must contain the information required by subdivision 14, if the political committee or political fund has solicited and caused others to make aggregate contributions greater than $5,000 between January 1 of the general election year and the end of the reporting period. This disclosure requirement is in addition to the report required by subdivision 14.

Subd. 3a. The reports of a principal campaign committee of a legislative candidate required by this section shall list in a prominent place on the first page of every report each county in which the legislative district lies.

Subd. 4. A report shall cover the period from the last day covered by the previous report to seven days prior to the filing date, except that the report due on January 31 shall cover the period from the last day covered by the previous report to December 31.

Subd. 5. Preelection reports. In any statewide election any loan, contribution, or contributions from any one source totaling $2,000 or more, or in any legislative election totaling more than $400, received between the last day covered in the last report prior to an election and the election shall be reported to the board in one of the following ways:

(1) in person within 48 hours after its receipt;

(2) by telegram or mailgram within 48 hours after its receipt; or

(3) by certified mail sent within 48 hours after its receipt.

These loans and contributions must also be reported in the next required report.

The 48-hour notice requirement does not apply with respect to a primary if the statewide or legislative candidate is unopposed in that primary.

Subd. 6. Every candidate who does not designate and cause to be formed a principal campaign committee, and any individual who makes independent expenditures or expenditures expressly advocating the approval or defeat of a ballot question in aggregate in excess of $100 in any year, shall file with the board a report containing the information required by subdivision 3. Reports required by this subdivision shall be filed on the dates on which reports by committees and funds are filed.

Subd. 6a. Any individual, political committee or political fund filing a report or statement disclosing any independent expenditure pursuant to subdivision 3 or 6 shall file with that report a sworn statement that the expenditures so disclosed were not made with the authorization or expressed or implied consent of, or in cooperation or in concert with, or at the request or suggestion of any candidate, any candidate's principal campaign committee or agent.

Subd. 6b. Independent expenditures; notice. (a) Within 24 hours after an individual, political committee, or political fund makes or becomes obligated by oral or written agreement to make an independent expenditure in excess of $100, other than an expenditure by an association targeted to inform solely its own dues-paying members of the association's position on a candidate, the individual, political committee, or political fund shall file with the board an affidavit notifying the board of the intent to make the independent expenditure and serve a copy of the affidavit on each candidate in the affected race and on the treasurer of the candidate's principal campaign committee. The affidavit must contain the information with respect to the expenditure that is required to be reported under subdivision 3, paragraph (g); except that if an expenditure is reported before it is made, the notice must include a reasonable estimate of the anticipated amount. Each new expenditure requires a new notice.

(b) An individual or the treasurer of a political committee or political fund who fails to give notice as required by this subdivision, or who files a false affidavit of notice, is guilty of a gross misdemeanor and is subject to a civil fine of up to four times the amount of the independent expenditure stated in the notice or of which notice was required, whichever is greater.

Subd. 7. If no contribution is received or expenditure made by or on behalf of a candidate, political fund or political committee during a reporting period, the treasurer of the committee or fund shall file with the board at the time required by this section a statement to that effect.

Subd. 8. The board shall exempt any member of or contributor to any association, political committee or political fund or any other individual from the provisions of this section if the member, contributor or other individual demonstrates by clear and convincing evidence that disclosure would expose the member or contributor to economic reprisals, loss of employment or threat of physical coercion.

An association, political committee or political fund may seek an exemption for all of its members or contributors if it demonstrates by clear and convincing evidence that a substantial number of its members or contributors would suffer a restrictive effect on their freedom of association if members were required to seek exemptions individually.

Subd. 9. Repealed, 1978 c 463 s 109

Subd. 10. Any individual, association, political committee or political fund seeking an exemption pursuant to subdivision 8 shall submit a written application for exemption to the board. The board, without hearing, shall grant or deny the exemption within 30 days after receiving an application, and shall issue a written order stating the reasons for its action. The board shall publish its order in the State Register and give notice to all parties known to the board to have an interest in the matter. If the board receives a written objection to its action from any party within 20 days after publication of its order and notification of interested parties, the board shall hold a contested case hearing on the matter. Upon the filing of a timely objection from the applicant, an order denying an exemption shall be suspended pending the outcome of the contested case. If no timely objection is received the exemption shall continue to be in effect until a written objection is filed with the board in a succeeding election year. The board by rule shall establish a procedure so that any individual seeking an exemption may proceed anonymously if the individual would be exposed to the reprisals listed in subdivision 8 if the individual's identity were to be revealed for the purposes of a hearing.

Subd. 11. No person or association shall engage in economic reprisals or threaten loss of employment or physical coercion against any person or association because of that person's or association's political contributions or political activity. This subdivision shall not apply to compensation for employment or loss of employment when the political affiliation or viewpoint of the employee is a bona fide occupational qualification of the employment. Any person or association which violates this subdivision is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.

Subd. 12. The board shall notify by certified mail or personal service any individual who fails to file a statement required by this section. If an individual fails to file a statement due January 31 within seven days after receiving a notice, the board may impose a late filing fee of $5 per day, not to exceed $100, commencing on the eighth day after receiving notice. If an individual fails to file a statement due before any primary or election within three days of the date due, regardless of whether the individual has received any notice, the board may impose a late filing fee of $50 per day, not to exceed $500, commencing on the fourth day after the date the statement was due. The board shall further notify by certified mail or personal service any individual who fails to file any statement within 14 days after receiving a first notice from the board that the individual may be subject to a criminal penalty for failure to file a statement. An individual who knowingly fails to file the statement within seven days after receiving a second notice from the board is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Subd. 13. Third party reimbursement. An individual, political committee, or political fund filing a report disclosing an expenditure or noncampaign disbursement that must be reported and itemized under subdivision 3, paragraph (g) or (l), that is a reimbursement to a third party is required to report the purpose of each expenditure or disbursement for which the third party is being reimbursed. An expenditure or disbursement is a reimbursement to a third party if it is for goods or services that were not directly provided by the individual or association to whom the expenditure or disbursement is made. Third party reimbursements include payments to credit card companies and reimbursement of individuals for expenses they have incurred.

Subd. 14. Reports by solicitors. An individual, association, political committee, or political fund, other than a candidate or the members of a candidate's principal campaign committee, that directly solicits and causes others to make contributions to candidates or a caucus of the members of a political party in a house of the legislature, that aggregate more than $5,000 in a calendar year must file with the board a report disclosing the amount of each contribution, the names of the contributors, and to whom the contributions were given. The report for each calendar year must be filed with the board by January 31 of the following year. The report must cover the accumulated contributions made or received during the calendar year.

HIST: 1974 c 470 s 20; 1975 c 271 s 6; 1976 c 307 s 14-18; 1977 c 346 s 1; 1978 c 463 s 51-59; 1978 c 793 s 37; 1979 c 59 s 5; 1980 c 587 art 2 s 9,10; 1980 c 607 art 17 s 10,11; 1985 c 40 s 1; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 214 s 3,4; 1990 c 608 art 3 s 5-7; 1991 c 349 s 11,12; 1993 c 318 art 2 s 15-18; 1996 c 459 s 1; 1997 c 202 art 2 s 7