Contributions And Other Receipts

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PAC Manual:
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Appendices:
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PACs - POLITICAL COMMITTEE AND INDEPENDENT COMMITTEE - RECORDING AND REPORTING CONTRIBUTIONS AND OTHER RECEIPTS

Committees receive monies, goods and services from a variety of sources. Any items of value received by the committee are called receipts. The receipts are separated into two types by the MCFA; “contributions” and “other receipts”.

“Contributions” are the monies, goods and services donated or loaned to the committee. Contributions of monies donated to the committee are called “direct” contributions. Contributions of goods and services donated to the committee are called “in-kind” contributions.

“Other Receipts” are the monies received by the committee that are not contributions. Common examples include interest, refunds, rebates received by the committee and un-cashed or returned checks. A loan from a financial institution is also an “other receipt”.

TYPES OF CONTRIBUTIONS

Contribution of Money: A committee may accept direct contributions of money from legal sources. Direct contributions of $20.01 or more must be on written instruments such as a check, money order or credit card. Direct contributions of $20.00 or less may be received in cash.

In-kind Contribution: In-kind contributions are goods, services and facilities donated or loaned to the committee at no cost or at a discount. An in-kind contribution could be a donation of postage stamps, paying off a debt incurred by the committee or donating professional services to the committee. The value of an in-kind contribution is the fair market value of the goods or services or the usual rental charge of the facility. If the committee receives a discount unavailable to the general public, the value of the in-kind contribution is the amount discounted.

Loan as a Contribution: A committee may accept loans from legal sources. A loan is considered a contribution for the same amount as the loan. Therefore, a loan of $100.00 is a contribution of $100.00. A loan can be a loan of money or an in-kind contribution. A loan endorsement is an in-kind contribution to the committee in the amount of the endorsement.

RECORDING AND REPORTING RECEIPTS

The committee treasurer or designated record keeper must record and report the following information for donors when contributions or other receipts are received by the committee. This information is required regardless of the method of payment; cash, check, money order, electronic fund transfer or credit card.

Contributions from Individuals

1. First and last name;

2. Complete address;

3. Date of contribution meaning the date an agent of the committee takes possession of the contribution, not the date of issue or deposit date; and

4. Amount of contribution (Each contribution is reported separately)

5. Occupation and employer information when contributor exceeds $100.00 in a calendar year

Joint Checking Accounts: Record and report contributions received on a joint personal checking account as being received by the person who has signed the check. If the committee has knowledge that the check was intended to be split among contributors, record and report each contributor separately. This is common for joint checking accounts between spouses.

Contributions from Registered PACs and Party Committees

1. Committee name;

2. Complete address;

3. Date of contribution meaning the date an agent of the committee takes possession of the contribution, not the date of issue or deposit date; and

4. Amount of contribution (Each contribution is reported separately)

Contributions from unregistered Groups

1. Organization name;

2. Complete address;

3. Date of contribution meaning the date an agent of the committee takes possession of the contribution, not the date of issue or deposit date; and

4. Amount of contribution (Each contribution is reported separately)

5. If an individual gave toward the organization’s contribution, the amount the individual gave, the date the organization received the individual’s contribution, and the individual’s name and address must be recorded and reported. If the donor also gave $100.01 or more toward the organization’s contribution, the individual’s occupation, employer and principal place of business must also be recorded. Note: If the contribution from the unregistered group is $500.00 or more, the group must form and register a committee within 10 calendar days after reaching the $500.00 threshold.

Other Receipts

1. Complete Name;

2. Complete address;

3. Date of other receipt;

4. Amount of other receipt

Prompt Deposit Required: The committee treasurer or agent must promptly deposit all funds received by the committee in the committee’s depository. The committee receives a contribution as soon as the committee treasurer or an agent designated by the treasurer receives it.

When a Written Instrument is Required: A committee may not accept contributions of $20.01 or more in cash. A written instrument such as a check, money order, credit card or other electronic funds transfer record containing the name of the person making the contribution, date and amount of the contribution, and the name of the committee accepting the contribution must be included in the documentation.

CONTRIBUTION LIMITS

PACs may receive unlimited contribution amounts from legal sources. Exceptions apply for Caucus Committees.

ACCEPTABLE CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXEMPTIONS

Contribution of Money: A Committee may accept direct contributions of money from legal sources in the form of cash ($20.00 or less), check, money order, electronic funds transfer or credit cards.

Loan as a Contribution: A committee may accept loans from individuals, Independent Committees, Political Committees, Political Party Committees and financial institutions. Loans, other than financial institution loans, are recorded as contributions. A loan received by a committee which is endorsed or guaranteed by a third party means the third party is liable for the amount loaned.

Loan as an Other Receipt – Financial Institution Loan: A loan made by a financial institution is recorded as an “other receipt.”

In-kind Contributions: In-kind contributions are goods, services and facilities provided to the committee at no cost or at a discount. An in-kind contribution could be a donation of postage stamps to the committee, a person paying off a debt incurred by the committee or a person donating professional services to the committee. The value of an in-kind contribution is the fair market value of the good or service or the usual rental charge of the facility. If the committee receives a discount unavailable to the general public, the value of the in-kind contribution is the amount discounted. Independent and Political Committees must not accept an in-kind contribution from a corporation, joint stock company, labor union, domestic dependent sovereign, foreign national or persons holding a casino interest.

Contributions from Out-of-State Groups: See Appendix K.

Partnership, Limited Liability Company (LLC) or Professional Limited Liability Company Contributions: Contributions can be received from partnerships, LLCs and PLLCs, but special conditions exist for reporting the contributions. For more information see Appendix O2

Bundled Contributions Delivered to Statewide Candidate Committee: “Bundling” is defined as the delivery of one or more contributions from individuals to the candidate committee of a candidate for Governor, Lt. Governor, Secretary of State, Attorney General, State Board of Education, University of Michigan Regent, Michigan State University Trustee, Wayne State University Governor or Supreme Court Justice, by a PAC registered with the Secretary of State.

Contribution limits apply to bundled contributions. A PAC may give bundled contributions that are equal in amount to the contribution limit that they must adhere to if they were giving the committee a contribution directly. The bundled contribution limit is in addition to the contribution limit that the committee is allowed to give directly from the PAC’s account. The Bundled Contributions Schedule can be obtained from the Bureau of Elections.

Contribution Exemptions: An individual can assist a committee in a number of ways without the assistance counting as a contribution to the committee. For more information see Appendix O1

PROHIBITED CONTRIBUTIONS: See Appendix O

RETURNING CONTRIBUTIONS

Funds received by a committee which are returned to the contributor within 30 business days after their receipt are not a “contribution” under the MCFA.

  • Funds that are returned to the contributor which have not been deposited in the committee’s account are not reported on the next campaign statement required of the committee. A record of the action taken should be kept by the committee.
  • Funds deposited into the committee’s account that are subsequently returned to the contributor must be reported on the campaign statement covering the period during which the contribution was received and returned.

Fund Raisers: See Appendix F




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