Campaign Finance Disclosure Requirements

Table of Contents

PAC Manual:
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Appendices:
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PAC - POLITICAL COMMITTEE AND INDEPENDENT COMMITTEE - CAMPAIGN STATEMENTS

A PAC discloses its campaign finance activity on campaign statements. A campaign statement consists of a cover page, summary page, and a series of schedules that itemize the committee’s contributions, other receipts, expenditures, and debts. The fundraiser schedule summarizes fundraisers held by the committee.

State level committees that spend or receive (or expect to spend or receive) $5,000.00 or more in any calendar year must file electronically. Visit www.mertsplus.com for more information.

For state level filers that do not exceed the electronic filing threshold and local committees, paper campaign statement forms and instructions can be obtained from the Department of State’s website at www.Michigan.gov/campaignfinance. (Wayne County filers are encouraged to contact the Wayne County Clerk’s office for specific filing instructions.)

THE REPORTING WAIVER

A PAC that does not expect to spend or receive more than $1,000.00 in a calendar year can obtain a Reporting Waiver by selecting YES on the Statement of Organization or on an amended Statement of Organization. A committee that maintains a Reporting Waiver is exempt from filing detailed campaign statements unless it exceeds the $1,000.00 threshold. The Reporting Waiver is further explained in Appendix C.

CAMPAIGN STATEMENT COVERAGE DATES AND DUE DATES

Campaign statements have specific coverage periods. The first day covered by the campaign statement is referred to as the “opening date”. The last day covered by the campaign statement is referred to as the “closing date”. The time frame from the “opening date” to the “closing date” is referred to as the “coverage dates” or “coverage period”.

The first campaign statement filed by a committee “opens” on the day the committee formed and extends through the “closing date” of the Statement that is due. Subsequent campaign statements “open” on the day after the last day covered by the previous campaign statement filed by the committee and extends through the “closing date” of the campaign statement that is due. See Campaign Finance Disclosure website for more information.

In this way, there are never overlaps or gaps in the “coverage dates” of a committee’s campaign statements.

STATE LEVEL

PACs, including Super PACs and Caucus Committees, registered on the state level that do not maintain a Reporting Waiver are required to file campaign statements four (4) times a year according to the schedule detailed below:

Type of StatementClosing Date of StatementStatement Due Date
January StatementDecember 31January 31
April StatementApril 20April 25
July StatementJuly 20July 25
October StatementOctober 20October 25

PACs, including Super PACs, registered on the state level also file 48 Hour/Late Contribution Reports and Special Election Independent Expenditure Reports when applicable. See Appendix G for more information on filing these Immediate Disclosure Reports.

Caucus Committees: Caucus Committees are required to file four (4) campaign statements a year as outlined above. In addition, Caucus committees are required to file 48 Hour/Late Contribution Reports, Special Election Independent Expenditure Reports, and 24-Hour Reports when applicable. See Appendix G for more information on filing the Immediate Disclosure Reports.

Please refer to Appendix E on Late Filing Fees for applicable late filing fees.

COUNTY LEVEL

PACs registered on the county level that do not maintain a Reporting Waiver are required to file campaign statements according to the schedule detailed below.

WHEN CAMPAIGN STATEMENTS ARE REQUIRED

  • A Pre-Election Campaign Statement is required 11 days before any “election” in which the committee participates (closes 16 days before the election). PACs registered on the county level are not required to file a Pre-Election Campaign Statement if all of the expenditures made by the committee that relate to the election involved have been reported in a previous campaign statement.
  • A Post-Election Campaign Statement is required 30 days after any “election” in which the committee participates (closes 20 days after the election). PACs registered on the county level are not required to file a Post-Election Campaign Statement if all of the expenditures made by the committee that relate to the election involved have been reported in a previous campaign statement.
  • An Annual Campaign Statement is required each year on January 31 (closes on December 31). The Annual Campaign Statement is required even if the committee does not have any receipts or expenditures to disclose for the period covered by the Statement. The Annual Campaign Statement is waived if the committee files a Post-General Campaign Statement due during the month of December.
  • PACs, including Super PACs, registered on the local level also file 48 Hour/Late Contribution Reports and Special Election Independent Expenditure Reports when applicable. See Appendix G for more information on filing these Immediate Disclosure Reports.

Pre-Election Campaign Statements close 16 days before the election and are due 11 days before the election.

Post-Election Campaign Statements close 20 days following the election and are due 30 days following the election.

Annual Campaign Statements close on December 31 and are due January 31.

Immediate Disclosure Reports, see Appendix G for more information.

DEFINITION OF ELECTION

The term “election” means a primary, general, special, recall, or millage election held in Michigan or a convention or caucus held by a political party in Michigan to nominate candidates. A committee is considered to be a participant in an election if:

  • it makes a contribution to support or oppose a candidate involved in the election or a ballot question on the election ballot;
  • it makes an independent expenditure to support or oppose a candidate involved in the election or a ballot question on the election ballot; or
  • it makes a contribution to or an independent expenditure to assist a political party in gaining ballot access in Michigan.

ANNUAL CAMPAIGN STATEMENT FILING EXEMPTION

A PAC registered on the local level that files a Post-General Campaign Statement due between December 1 and January 30 is not required to file the Annual Campaign Statement that is due on January 31 immediately following the Post-General. However, the committee would be required to file the Annual Campaign Statement that will be due on January 31 of subsequent years that cannot be waived.

EXAMPLES OF WHEN CAMPAIGN STATEMENTS ARE DUE

EXAMPLE: During the Pre-General Campaign Statement reporting period, the ABC PAC makes an expenditure to support a candidate participating in a city General Election and a second expenditure on the same date to support a candidate participating in a Special Election scheduled after the General Election. These are the only expenditures the committee makes during the year. As a result of this activity, the committee is required to file the Pre-General Campaign Statement. The next campaign statement required of the committee is the Annual Campaign Statement. The Post-General, Pre-Special and Post-Special Campaign Statements are not required, as they would not show any expenditures relating to the elections involved.

EXAMPLE: During the Pre-General Campaign Statement reporting period, the XYZ PAC makes an expenditure to support a candidate participating in a city General Election. After the closing date for the Pre-General Campaign Statement, the committee makes an expenditure to support a candidate participating in a Special Election scheduled after the General Election. These are the only expenditures the committee makes during the year. As a result of this activity, the committee is required to file the Pre-General and the Pre-Special Campaign Statements. The next campaign statement required of the committee is the Annual Campaign Statement. The Post-General and Post-Special Campaign Statements are not required, as they would not show any expenditures relating to the elections involved.

EXAMPLE: On December 22, prior to the close of the Annual Campaign Statement on December 31, the BOOST PAC makes an expenditure to support a candidate participating in a village Primary Election that will be held in January of the following year. This is the only expenditure the committee makes with respect to the village Primary. The committee files the Annual Campaign Statement, reporting the expenditure. The committee is not required to file the Pre-Primary or Post-Primary Campaign Statements, as they would not show any expenditures relating to the village Primary.

IMMEDIATE DISCLOSURE REPORTS: See Appendix G

  • 48 Hour/Late Contribution Reports
  • Special Election Independent Expenditure Reports
  • 24 - Hour Reports (State Level Caucus Committees Only)

LATE FILING FEE SCHEDULES: See Appendix E




Page last modified on January 02, 2019, at 05:10 PM