Law:Title 15. Regulating Political Funds And Campaigns from Chapter 254. Political Reporting (Texas)

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Contents

Chapter 254. Political Reporting

Subchapter A. Recordkeeping

Section  254.001.  Recordkeeping Required.

(a) Each candidate and each officeholder shall maintain a record of all reportable activity.

(b)  Each campaign treasurer of a political committee shall maintain a record of all reportable activity.

(c)  The record must contain the information that is necessary for filing the reports required by this chapter.

(d)  A person required to maintain a record under this section shall preserve the record for at least two years beginning on the filing deadline for the report containing the information in the record.

(e)  A person who violates this section commits an offense. An offense under this section is a Class B misdemeanor.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Subchapter B. Political Reporting Generally

Section  254.031.  General Contents Of Reports.

(a) Except as otherwise provided by this chapter, each report filed under this chapter must include:

(1)  the amount of political contributions from each person that in the aggregate exceed $50 and that are accepted during the reporting period by the person or committee required to file a report under this chapter, the full name and address of the person making the contributions, and the dates of the contributions;

(2)  the amount of loans that are made during the reporting period for campaign or officeholder purposes to the person or committee required to file the report and that in the aggregate exceed $50, the dates the loans are made, the interest rate, the maturity date, the type of collateral for the loans, if any, the full name and address of the person or financial institution making the loans, the full name and address, principal occupation, and name of the employer of each guarantor of the loans, the amount of the loans guaranteed by each guarantor, and the aggregate principal amount of all outstanding loans as of the last day of the reporting period;

(3)  the amount of political expenditures that in the aggregate exceed $50 and that are made during the reporting period, the full name and address of the persons to whom the expenditures are made, and the dates and purposes of the expenditures;

(4)  the amount of each payment made during the reporting period from a political contribution if the payment is not a political expenditure, the full name and address of the person to whom the payment is made, and the date and purpose of the payment;

(5)  the total amount or a specific listing of the political contributions of $50 or less accepted and the total amount or a specific listing of the political expenditures of $50 or less made during the reporting period;

(6)  the total amount of all political contributions accepted and the total amount of all political expenditures made during the reporting period;

(7)  the name of each candidate or officeholder who benefits from a direct campaign expenditure made during the reporting period by the person or committee required to file the report, and the office sought or held, excluding a direct campaign expenditure that is made by the principal political committee of a political party on behalf of a slate of two or more nominees of that party; and

(8)  as of the last day of a reporting period for which the person is required to file a report, the total amount of political contributions accepted, including interest or other income on those contributions, maintained in one or more accounts in which political contributions are deposited as of the last day of the reporting period.

(a-1)  A de minimis error in calculating or reporting a cash balance under Subsection (a)(8) is not a violation of this section.

(b)  If no reportable activity occurs during a reporting period, the person required to file a report shall indicate that fact in the report.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.10, eff. Jan. 1, 1992; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.091, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.0311.  Report By Legislative Caucus.

(a) A legislative caucus shall file a report of contributions and expenditures as required by this section.

(b)  A report filed under this section must include:

(1)  the amount of contributions from each person, other than a caucus member, that in the aggregate exceed $50 and that are accepted during the reporting period by the legislative caucus, the full name and address of the person making the contributions, and the dates of the contributions;

(2)  the amount of loans that are made during the reporting period to the legislative caucus and that in the aggregate exceed $50, the dates the loans are made, the interest rate, the maturity date, the type of collateral for the loans, if any, the full name and address of the person or financial institution making the loans, the full name and address, principal occupation, and name of the employer of each guarantor of the loans, the amount of the loans guaranteed by each guarantor, and the aggregate principal amount of all outstanding loans as of the last day of the reporting period;

(3)  the amount of expenditures that in the aggregate exceed $50 and that are made during the reporting period, the full name and address of the persons to whom the expenditures are made, and the dates and purposes of the expenditures;

(4)  the total amount or a specific listing of contributions of $50 or less accepted from persons other than caucus members and the total amount or a specific listing of expenditures of $50 or less made during the reporting period; and

(5)  the total amount of all contributions accepted, including total contributions from caucus members, and the total amount of all expenditures made during the reporting period.

(c)  If no reportable activity occurs during a reporting period, the legislative caucus shall indicate that fact in the report.

(d)  A legislative caucus shall file with the commission two reports for each year.

(e)  The first report shall be filed not later than July 15. The report covers the period beginning January 1 or the day the legislative caucus is organized, as applicable, and continuing through June 30.

(f)  The second report shall be filed not later than January 15. The report covers the period beginning July 1 or the day the legislative caucus is organized, as applicable, and continuing through December 31.

(g)  A legislative caucus shall maintain a record of all reportable activity under this section and shall preserve the record for at least two years beginning on the filing deadline for the report containing the information in the record.

(h)  In this section, "legislative caucus" has the meaning assigned by Section 253.0341.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 43, Sec. 2, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  254.0312.  Best Efforts. (a) A Pe

rson required to file a report under this chapter is considered to be in compliance with Section 254.0612, 254.0912, or 254.1212 only if the person or the person's campaign treasurer shows that the person has used best efforts to obtain, maintain, and report the information required by those sections. A person is considered to have used best efforts to obtain, maintain, and report that information if the person or the person's campaign treasurer complies with this section.

(b)  Each written solicitation for political contributions from an individual must include:

(1)  a clear request for the individual's full name and address, the individual's principal occupation or job title, and the full name of the individual's employer; and

(2)  an accurate statement of state law regarding the collection and reporting of individual contributor information, such as:

(A)  "State law requires (certain candidates, officeholders, or political committees, as applicable) to use best efforts to collect and report the full name and address, principal occupation or job title, and full name of employer of individuals whose contributions equal or exceed $500 in a reporting period."; or

(B)  "To comply with state law, (certain candidates, officeholders, or political committees, as applicable) must use best efforts to obtain, maintain, and report the full name and address, principal occupation or job title, and full name of employer of individuals whose contributions equal or exceed $500 in a reporting period.".

(c)  For each political contribution received from an individual that, when aggregated with all other political contributions received from the individual during the reporting period, equals or exceeds $500 and for which the information required by Section 254.0612, 254.0912, or 254.1212 is not provided, the person must make at least one oral or written request for the missing information. A request under this subsection:

(1)  must be made not later than the 30th day after the date the contribution is received;

(2)  must include a clear and conspicuous statement that complies with Subsection (b);

(3)  if made orally, must be documented in writing; and

(4)  may not be made in conjunction with a solicitation for an additional political contribution.

(d)  A person must report any information required by Section 254.0612, 254.0912, or 254.1212 that is not provided by the individual making the political contribution and that the person has in the person's records of political contributions or previous reports under this chapter.

(e)  A person who receives information required by Section 254.0612, 254.0912, or 254.1212 after the filing deadline for the report on which the contribution is reported must include the missing information on the next report the person is required to file under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.10, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.032.  Nonreportable Personal Travel Expense.

A political contribution consisting of personal travel expense incurred by an individual is not required to be reported under this chapter if the individual receives no reimbursement for the expense.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.033.  Nonreportable Personal Service.

A political contribution consisting of an individual's personal service is not required to be reported under this chapter if the individual receives no compensation for the service.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.034.  Time Of Accepting Contribution.

(a) A determination to accept or refuse a political contribution that is received by a candidate, officeholder, or political committee shall be made not later than the end of the reporting period during which the contribution is received.

(b)  If the determination to accept or refuse a political contribution is not made before the time required by Subsection (a), for purposes of this chapter, the contribution is considered to have been accepted on the last day of that reporting period.

(c)  A political contribution that is received but not accepted shall be returned to the contributor not later than the 30th day after the deadline for filing a report for the reporting period during which the contribution is received. A contribution not returned within that time is considered to be accepted.

(d)  A candidate, officeholder, or political committee commits an offense if the person knowingly fails to return a political contribution as required by Subsection (c).

(e)  An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 2, Sec. 7.16, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  254.035.  Time Of Making Expenditure.

(a) For purposes of reporting under this chapter, a political expenditure is not considered to have been made until the amount is readily determinable by the person making the expenditure, except as provided by Subsection (b).

(b)  If the character of an expenditure is such that under normal business practice the amount is not disclosed until receipt of a periodic bill, the expenditure is not considered made until the date the bill is received.

(c)  The amount of a political expenditure made by credit card is readily determinable by the person making the expenditure on the date the person receives the credit card statement that includes the expenditure.

(d)  Subsection (c) does not apply to a political expenditure made by credit card during the period covered by a report required to be filed under Section 254.064(b) or (c), 254.124(b) or (c), or 254.154(b) or (c).

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.11, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.036.  Form Of Report; Affidavit; Mailing Of Forms.

(a) Each report filed under this chapter with an authority other than the commission must be in a format prescribed by the commission.  A report filed with the commission that is not required to be filed by computer diskette, modem, or other means of electronic transfer must be on a form prescribed by the commission and written in black ink or typed with black typewriter ribbon or, if the report is a computer printout, the printout must conform to the same format and paper size as the form prescribed by the commission.

(b)  Except as provided by Subsection (c), (e), or (f), each report filed under this chapter with the commission must be filed by computer diskette, modem, or other means of electronic transfer, using computer software provided by the commission or computer software that meets commission specifications for a standard file format.

(c)  A candidate, officeholder, or political committee that is required to file reports with the commission may file reports that comply with Subsection (a) if:

(1)  the candidate, officeholder, or campaign treasurer of the committee files with the commission an affidavit stating that the candidate, officeholder, or committee, an agent of the candidate, officeholder, or committee, or a person with whom the candidate, officeholder, or committee contracts does not use computer equipment to keep the current records of political contributions, political expenditures, or persons making political contributions to the candidate, officeholder, or committee; and

(2)  the candidate, officeholder, or committee does not, in a calendar year, accept political contributions that in the aggregate exceed $20,000 or make political expenditures that in the aggregate exceed $20,000.

(c-1)  An affidavit under Subsection (c) must be filed with each report filed under Subsection (a). The affidavit must include a statement that the candidate, officeholder, or political committee understands that the candidate, officeholder, or committee shall file reports as required by Subsection (b) if:

(1)  the candidate, officeholder, or committee, a consultant of the candidate, officeholder, or committee, or a person with whom the candidate, officeholder, or committee contracts uses computer equipment for a purpose described by Subsection (c); or

(2)  the candidate, officeholder, or committee exceeds $20,000 in political contributions or political expenditures in a calendar year.

(d)  Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.26.

(e)  A candidate for an office described by Section 252.005(5) or a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing only candidates for an office described by Section 252.005(5) or a measure described by Section 252.007(5) may file reports that comply with Subsection (a).

(f)  An individual required to file a report with the commission in connection with a direct campaign expenditure to which Section 253.062 applies may file a report that complies with Subsection (a).

(g)  Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.26.

(h)  Each report filed under this chapter that is not filed by electronic transfer must be accompanied by an affidavit executed by the person required to file the report. The affidavit must contain the statement: "I swear, or affirm, under penalty of perjury, that the accompanying report is true and correct and includes all information required to be reported by me under Title 15, Election Code." Each report filed under this chapter by electronic transfer must be under oath by the person required to file the report and must contain, in compliance with commission specifications, the digitized signature of the person required to file the report. A report filed under this chapter is considered to be under oath by the person required to file the report, and the person is subject to prosecution under Chapter 37, Penal Code, regardless of the absence of or a defect in the affidavit.

(i)  Each person required to file reports with the commission that comply with Subsection (b) shall file with the commission a written statement providing the manner of electronic transfer that the person will use to file the report. A statement under this subsection must be filed not later than the 30th day before the filing deadline for the first report a person is required to file under Subsection (b). A person who intends to change the manner of filing described by the person's most recent statement shall notify the commission of the change not later than the 30th day before the filing deadline for the report to which the change applies. If a person does not file a statement under this subsection, the commission may accept as authentic a report filed in any manner that complies with Subsection (b). If the commission receives a report that is not filed in the manner described by the person's most recent statement under this subsection, the commission shall promptly notify the person in writing that the commission has received a report filed in a different manner than expected.

(j)  As part of the notification required by Section 251.033, the commission shall mail the appropriate forms to each person required to file a report with the commission during that reporting period.

(k)  The commission shall prescribe forms for purposes of legislative caucus reports under Section 254.0311 that are separate and distinct from forms for other reports under this chapter.

(l)  This section applies to a report that is filed electronically or otherwise.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.11, eff. Jan. 1, 1992; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 43, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1134, Sec. 6, 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1434, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.12, 2.26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1225, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  254.0362.  Use Of Publicly Accessible Computer Terminal For Preparation Of Reports.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (d), a person who is required to file reports under this chapter may use a publicly accessible computer terminal that has Internet access and web browser software to prepare the reports.

(b)  A public entity may prescribe reasonable restrictions on the use of a publicly accessible computer terminal for preparation of reports under this chapter, except that a public entity may not prohibit a person from using a computer terminal for preparation of reports during the public entity's regular business hours if the person requests to use the computer terminal less than 48 hours before a reporting deadline to which the person is subject.

(c)  This section does not require a public entity to provide a person with consumable materials, including paper and computer diskettes, in conjunction with the use of a publicly accessible computer terminal.

(d)  An officeholder may not use a computer issued to the officeholder for official use to prepare a report under this title.

(e)  In this section:

(1)  "Public entity" means a state agency, city, county, or independent school district.

(2)  "Publicly accessible computer terminal" means a computer terminal that is normally available for use by members of the public and that is owned by a state agency, an independent school district, or a public library operated by a city or county.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1434, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section 254.037.  Filing Deadline.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), the deadline for filing a report required by this chapter is 5 p.m. on the last day permitted under this chapter for filing the report.

(b)  The deadline for filing a report electronically with the commission as required by this chapter is midnight on the last day for filing the report.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 472, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 254.038.  Special Report Near Election By Certain Candidates And Political Committees.

(a) In addition to other reports required by this chapter, the following persons shall file additional reports during the period beginning the ninth day before election day and ending at 12 noon on the day before election day:

(1)  a candidate for an office specified by Section 252.005(1) who accepts political contributions from a person that in the aggregate exceed $1,000 during that reporting period; and

(2)  a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing a candidate described by Subdivision (1) and that accepts political contributions from a person that in the aggregate exceed $1,000 during that reporting period.

(b)  Each report required by this section must include the amount of the contributions specified by Subsection (a), the full name and address of the person making the contributions, and the dates of the contributions.

(c)  A report under this section shall be filed electronically, by telegram or telephonic facsimile machine, or by hand, in the form required by Section 254.036.  The commission must receive a report under this section filed by telegram, telephonic facsimile machine, or hand not later than 5 p.m. of the first business day after the date the contribution is accepted.  The commission must receive a report under this section filed electronically not later than midnight of the first business day after the date the contribution is accepted. A report under this section is not required to be accompanied by the affidavit required under Section 254.036(h) or to be submitted on a form prescribed by the commission.  A report under this section that complies with Section 254.036(a) must be accompanied by an affidavit under Section 254.036(c)(1) unless the candidate or committee has submitted an affidavit under Section 254.036(c)(1) with another report filed in connection with the election for which a report is required under this section.

(d)  To the extent of a conflict between this section and Section 254.036, this section controls.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 994, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 3.14, eff. Aug. 30, 1993; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1428, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2001; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.13, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 174, Sec. 1, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 174, Sec. 2, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 472, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 254.039.  Special Report Near Election By Certain General-purpose Committees.

(a) In addition to other reports required by this chapter, a general-purpose committee shall file additional reports during the period beginning the ninth day before election day and ending at 12 noon on the day before election day if the committee:

(1)  accepts political contributions from a person that in the aggregate exceed $5,000 during that reporting period; or

(2)  makes direct campaign expenditures supporting or opposing either a single candidate that in the aggregate exceed $1,000 or a group of candidates that in the aggregate exceed $15,000 during that reporting period.

(a-1)  A report under this section shall be filed electronically, by telegram or telephonic facsimile machine, or by hand, in the form required by Section 254.036.  The commission must receive a report under this section not later than 5 p.m. of the first business day after the date the contribution is accepted or the expenditure is made.  A report under this section is not required to be accompanied by the affidavit required under Section 254.036(h) or to be submitted on a form prescribed by the commission.  A report under this section that complies with Section 254.036(a) must be accompanied by an affidavit under Section 254.036(c)(1) unless the committee has submitted an affidavit under Section 254.036(c)(1) with another report filed in connection with the election for which a report is required under this section.

(a-2)  Each report required by Subsection (a)(1) must include the amount of the contributions specified by that subsection, the full name and address of the person making the contributions, and the dates of the contributions.

(b)  Each report required by Subsection (a)(2) must include the amount of the expenditures, the full name and address of the persons to whom the expenditures are made, and the dates and purposes of the expenditures.

(c)  To the extent of a conflict between this section and Section 254.036, this section controls.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 994, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1989; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 3.15, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 174, Sec. 3, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 174, Sec. 4, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1294, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  254.0391.  Report During Special Legislative Session.

(a) A statewide officeholder, a member of the legislature, or a specific-purpose committee for supporting, opposing, or assisting a statewide officeholder or member of the legislature, or a candidate for statewide office or the legislature or a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing the candidate, that accepts a political contribution during the period beginning on the date the governor signs the proclamation calling a special legislative session and continuing through the date of final adjournment shall report the contribution to the commission not later than the 30th day after the date of final adjournment.

(b)  A determination to accept or refuse the political contribution shall be made not later than the third day after the date the contribution is received.

(c)  Each report required by this section must include the amount of the political contribution, the full name and address of the person making the contribution, and the date of the contribution.

(d)  A report is not required under this section if a person covered by Subsection (a) is required to file another report under this chapter not later than the 10th day after the date a report required under this section would be due.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.12, eff. Jan. 1, 1992.



Section  254.040.  Preservation Of Reports; Record Of Inspection.

(a) Each report filed under this chapter shall be preserved by the authority with whom it is filed for at least two years after the date it is filed.

(b)  Each time a person requests to inspect a report, the commission shall place in the file a statement of the person's name and address, whom the person represents, and the date of the request. The commission shall retain that statement in the file for one year after the date the requested report is filed. This subsection does not apply to a request to inspect a report by:

(1)  a member or employee of the commission acting on official business; or

(2)  an individual acting on the individual's own behalf.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1134, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  254.0401.  Availability Of Electronic Reports On Internet.

(a) The commission shall make each report filed with the commission under Section 254.036(b) available to the public on the Internet not later than the second business day after the date the report is filed.

(b), (c) Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.26.

 

Text of subsec. (b) as amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 567, Sec. 1.

 

(b)  Except as otherwise provided by this subsection, the commission shall make a report filed with the commission under Section 254.036(b) for a reporting deadline by any candidate for a particular office or by a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing only one candidate for a particular office available to the public on the Internet if each candidate for that office that is nominated by or seeking the nomination of a political party required to nominate candidates by primary election, and each specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing only one candidate for that office that is nominated by or seeking the nomination of a political party required to nominate candidates by primary election, other than a candidate or committee to which Section 254.036(c) or (d) applies, has filed a report for that reporting deadline. Regardless of whether each candidate for a particular office that is nominated by or seeking the nomination of a political party required to nominate candidates by primary election, and each specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing only one candidate for that office that is nominated by or seeking the nomination of a political party required to nominate candidates by primary election, has filed a report for a filing deadline, the commission shall make each report in connection with that office available on the Internet and by any other electronic means on:

(1)  the 21st day after the date of the filing deadline, for a report other than a report required to be filed under Section 254.064(c); or

(2)  the fourth day after the date of the filing deadline, for a report required to be filed under Section 254.064(c).

(d)  The access allowed by this section to reports is in addition to the public's access to the information through other electronic or print distribution of the information.

(e)  Before making a report filed under Section 254.036(b) available on the Internet, the commission shall remove each portion, other than city, state, and zip code, of the address of a person listed as having made a political contribution to the person filing the report. The address information removed must remain available on the report maintained in the commission's office but may not be available electronically at that office.

(f)  The commission shall clearly state on the Internet website on which reports are provided under Subsection (b) that reports filed by an independent candidate, a third-party candidate, or a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing an independent or third-party candidate will not be available if the candidate or committee has not yet filed a report.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1434, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.14, 2.26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 567, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.0402.  Public Inspection Of Reports.

(a) Notwithstanding Section 552.222(a), Government Code, the authority with whom a report is filed under this chapter may not require a person examining the report to provide any information or identification.

(b)  The commission shall make information from reports filed with the commission under Section 254.036(b) available by electronic means, including:

(1)  providing access to computer terminals at the commission's office;

(2)  providing information on computer diskette for purchase at a reasonable cost; and

(3)  providing modem or other electronic access to the information.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1434, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  254.041.  Criminal Penalty For Untimely Or Incomplete Report.

(a) A person who is required by this chapter to file a report commits an offense if the person knowingly fails:

(1)  to file the report on time;

(2)  to file a report by computer diskette, modem, or other means of electronic transfer, if the person is required to file reports that comply with Section 254.036(b); or

(3)  to include in the report information that is required by this title to be included.

(b)  Except as provided by Subsection (c), an offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor.

(c)  A violation of Subsection (a)(3) by a candidate or officeholder is a Class A misdemeanor if the report fails to include information required by Section 254.061(3) or Section 254.091(2), as applicable.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1434, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1420, Sec. 4A.001, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  254.042.  Civil Penalty For Late Report.

(a) The commission shall determine from any available evidence whether a report required to be filed with the commission under this chapter is late.  On making that determination, the commission shall immediately mail a notice of the determination to the person required to file the report.

(b)  If a report other than a report under Section 254.064(c), 254.124(c), or 254.154(c) or the first report under Section 254.063 or 254.123 that is required to be filed following the primary or general election is determined to be late, the person required to file the report is liable to the state for a civil penalty of $500. If a report under Section 254.064(c), 254.124(c), or 254.154(c) or the first report under Section 254.063 or 254.153 that is required to be filed following the primary or general election is determined to be late, the person required to file the report is liable to the state for a civil penalty of $500 for the first day the report is late and $100 for each day thereafter that the report is late. If a report is more than 30 days late, the commission shall issue a warning of liability by registered mail to the person required to file the report. If the penalty is not paid before the 10th day after the date on which the warning is received, the person is liable for a civil penalty in an amount determined by commission rule, but not to exceed $10,000.

(c)  A penalty paid voluntarily under this section shall be deposited in the State Treasury to the credit of the General Revenue Fund.

(d)  Repealed by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.20, eff. Jan. 1, 1992.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.13, eff. Jan. 1, 1992; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 3.16, eff. Aug. 30, 1993; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.15, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1294, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  254.043.  Action To Require Compliance.

(a) This section applies only to:

(1)  a person required to file reports under this chapter with the commission; or

(2)  a person required to file reports under this chapter with an authority other than the commission in connection with an office of a political subdivision in a county with a population of at least 500,000.

(b)  A resident of the territory served by an office may bring an action for injunctive relief against a candidate for or holder of that office or a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing such a candidate or assisting such an officeholder to require the person to file a report under this chapter that the person has failed to timely file.

(c)  An action under this section may be brought against a person required to file reports under this chapter only if:

(1)  the report is not filed before the 60th day after the date on which the report was required to be filed;

(2)  not earlier than the 60th day after the date on which the report was required to be filed, the person bringing the action delivers written notice by certified mail to the person required to file the report, stating:

(A)  the person's intention to bring an action under this section if the report is not filed; and

(B)  that an action to require the filing of the report may be filed if the report is not filed before the 30th day after the date on which the person required to file the report receives the notice; and

(3)  the report is not filed before the 30th day after the date on which the person required to file the report receives the notice required by Subdivision (2).

(d)  The court shall award a plaintiff who prevails in an action under this section reasonable attorney's fees and court costs.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.16, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter C. Reporting By Candidate

Section  254.061.  Additional Contents Of Reports.

In addition to the contents required by Section 254.031, each report by a candidate must include:

(1)  the candidate's full name and address, the office sought, and the identity and date of the election for which the report is filed;

(2)  the campaign treasurer's name, residence or business street address, and telephone number;

(3)  for each political committee from which the candidate received notice under Section 254.128 or 254.161:

(A)  the committee's full name and address;

(B)  an indication of whether the committee is a general-purpose committee or a specific-purpose committee; and

(C)  the full name and address of the committee's campaign treasurer;

(4)  the full name and address of each individual acting as a campaign treasurer of a political committee under Section 253.062 from whom the candidate received notice under Section 254.128 or 254.161; and

(5)  on a separate page or pages of the report, the identification of any payment from political contributions made to a business in which the candidate has a participating interest of more than 10 percent, holds a position on the governing body of the business, or serves as an officer of the business.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.14, eff. Jan. 1, 1992.



Section  254.0611.  Additional Contents Of Reports By Certain Judicial Candidates.

(a) In addition to the contents required by Sections 254.031 and 254.061, each report by a candidate for a judicial office covered by Subchapter F, Chapter 253, must include:

(1)  the total amount of political contributions, including interest or other income, maintained in one or more accounts in which political contributions are deposited as of the last day of the reporting period;

(2)  for each individual from whom the person filing the report has accepted political contributions that in the aggregate exceed $50 and that are accepted during the reporting period:

(A)  the principal occupation and job title of the individual and the full name of the employer of the individual or of the law firm of which the individual or the individual's spouse is a member, if any; or

(B)  if the individual is a child, the full name of the law firm of which either of the individual's parents is a member, if any;

(3)  a specific listing of each asset valued at $500 or more that was purchased with political contributions and on hand as of the last day of the reporting period;

(4)  for each political contribution accepted by the person filing the report but not received as of the last day of the reporting period:

(A)  the full name and address of the person making the contribution;

(B)  the amount of the contribution; and

(C)  the date of the contribution; and

(5)  for each outstanding loan to the person filing the report as of the last day of the reporting period:

(A)  the full name and address of the person or financial institution making the loan; and

(B)  the full name and address of each guarantor of the loan other than the candidate.

(b)  In this section:

(1)  "Child" has the meaning assigned by Section 253.158.

(2)  "Law firm" and "member" have the meanings assigned by Section 253.157.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 763, Sec. 3, eff. July 1, 1995.



Section  254.0612.  Additional Contents Of Reports By Candidate For Statewide Executive Office Or Legislative Office.

In addition to the contents required by Sections 254.031 and 254.061, each report by a candidate for a statewide office in the executive branch or a legislative office must include, for each individual from whom the person filing the report has accepted political contributions that in the aggregate equal or exceed $500 and that are accepted during the reporting period:

(1)  the individual's principal occupation or job title; and

(2)  the full name of the individual's employer.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.17, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.062.  Certain Officeholder Activity Included.

If an officeholder who becomes a candidate has reportable activity that is not reported under Subchapter D before the end of the period covered by the first report the candidate is required to file under this subchapter, the reportable activity shall be included in the first report filed under this subchapter instead of in a report filed under Subchapter D.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.063.  Semiannual Reporting Schedule For Candidate.

(a) A candidate shall file two reports for each year as provided by this section.

(b)  The first report shall be filed not later than July 15. The report covers the period beginning January 1, the day the candidate's campaign treasurer appointment is filed, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this subchapter, as applicable, and continuing through June 30.

(c)  The second report shall be filed not later than January 15. The report covers the period beginning July 1, the day the candidate's campaign treasurer appointment is filed, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this subchapter, as applicable, and continuing through December 31.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.064.  Additional Reports Of Opposed Candidate.

(a) In addition to other required reports, for each election in which a person is a candidate and has an opponent whose name is to appear on the ballot, the person shall file two reports.

(b)  The first report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the 30th day before election day.  The report covers the period beginning the day the candidate's campaign treasurer appointment is filed or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this chapter, as applicable, and continuing through the 40th day before election day.

(c)  The second report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the eighth day before election day.  The report covers the period beginning the 39th day before election day and continuing through the 10th day before election day.

(d)  If a person becomes an opposed candidate after a reporting period prescribed by Subsection (b) or (c), the person's first report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the regular deadline for the report covering the period during which the person becomes an opposed candidate.  The period covered by the first report begins the day the candidate's campaign treasurer appointment is filed.

(e)  In addition to other required reports, an opposed candidate in a runoff election shall file one report for that election.  The runoff election report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the eighth day before runoff election day.  The report covers the period beginning the ninth day before the date of the main election and continuing through the 10th day before runoff election day.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 864, Sec. 245, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 673, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  254.065.  Final Report.

(a) If a candidate expects no reportable activity in connection with the candidacy to occur after the period covered by a report filed under this subchapter, the candidate may designate the report as a "final" report.

(b)  The designation of a report as a final report:

(1)  relieves the candidate of the duty to file additional reports under this subchapter, except as provided by Subsection (c); and

(2)  terminates the candidate's campaign treasurer appointment.

(c)  If, after a candidate's final report is filed, reportable activity with respect to the candidacy occurs, the candidate shall file the appropriate reports under this subchapter and is otherwise subject to the provisions of this title applicable to candidates. A report filed under this subsection may be designated as a final report.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section 254.066.  Authority With Whom Reports Filed.

Reports under this subchapter shall be filed with the authority with whom the candidate's campaign treasurer appointment is required to be filed.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 511, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 518, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.



Subchapter D. Reporting By Officeholder

Section  254.091.  Additional Contents Of Reports.

In addition to the contents required by Section 254.031, each report by an officeholder must include:

(1)  the officeholder's full name and address and the office held;

(2)  for each political committee from which the officeholder received notice under Section 254.128 or 254.161:

(A)  the committee's full name and address;

(B)  an indication of whether the committee is a general-purpose committee or a specific-purpose committee; and

(C)  the full name and address of the committee's campaign treasurer; and

(3)  on a separate page or pages of the report, the identification of any payment from political contributions made to a business in which the officeholder has a participating interest of more than 10 percent, holds a position on the governing body of the business, or serves as an officer of the business.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.15, eff. Jan. 1, 1992.



Section  254.0911.  Additional Contents Of Reports By Certain Judicial Officeholders. In A

ddition to the contents required by Sections 254.031 and 254.091, each report by a holder of a judicial office covered by Subchapter F, Chapter 253, must include the contents prescribed by Section 254.0611.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 763, Sec. 4, eff. July 1, 1995.



Section  254.0912.  Additional Contents Of Reports By Statewide Executive Officeholders And Legislative Officeholders. In A

ddition to the contents required by Sections 254.031 and 254.091, each report by a holder of a statewide office in the executive branch or a legislative office must include the contents prescribed by Section 254.0612.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.18, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.092.  Certain Officeholder Expenditures Excluded.

An officeholder is not required to report officeholder expenditures made from the officeholder's personal funds, except as provided by Section 253.035(h).

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.16, eff. Jan. 1, 1992.



Section  254.093.  Semiannual Reporting Schedule For Officeholder.

(a) An officeholder shall file two reports for each year as provided by this section.

(b)  The first report shall be filed not later than July 15. The report covers the period beginning January 1, the day the officeholder takes office, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this chapter, as applicable, and continuing through June 30.

(c)  The second report shall be filed not later than January 15. The report covers the period beginning July 1, the day the officeholder takes office, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this chapter, as applicable, and continuing through December 31.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.094.  Report Following Appointment Of Campaign Treasurer.

(a) An officeholder who appoints a campaign treasurer shall file a report as provided by this section.

(b)  The report covers the period beginning the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this chapter or the day the officeholder takes office, as applicable, and continuing through the day before the date the officeholder's campaign treasurer is appointed.

(c)  The report shall be filed not later than the 15th day after the date the officeholder's campaign treasurer is appointed.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.095.  Report Not Required.

If at the end of any reporting period prescribed by this subchapter an officeholder who is required to file a report with an authority other than the commission has not accepted political contributions that in the aggregate exceed $500 or made political expenditures that in the aggregate exceed $500, the officeholder is not required to file a report covering that period.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 3.17, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Section  254.096.  Officeholder Who Becomes Candidate.

An officeholder who becomes a candidate is subject to Subchapter C during each period covered by a report required to be filed under Subchapter C.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section 254.097.  Authority With Whom Reports Filed.

Reports under this subchapter shall be filed with the authority with whom a campaign treasurer appointment by a candidate for the office held by the officeholder is required to be filed.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 511, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 518, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.



Subchapter E. Reporting By Specific-purpose Committee

Section  254.121.  Additional Contents Of Reports.

In addition to the contents required by Section 254.031, each report by a campaign treasurer of a specific-purpose committee must include:

(1)  the committee's full name and address;

(2)  the full name, residence or business street address, and telephone number of the committee's campaign treasurer;

(3)  the identity and date of the election for which the report is filed, if applicable;

(4)  the name of each candidate and each measure supported or opposed by the committee, indicating for each whether the committee supports or opposes;

(5)  the name of each officeholder assisted by the committee;

(6)  the amount of each political expenditure in the form of a political contribution that is made to a candidate, officeholder, or another political committee and that is returned to the committee during the reporting period, the name of the person to whom the expenditure was originally made, and the date it is returned;

(7)  on a separate page or pages of the report, the identification of any payment from political contributions made to a business in which the candidate or officeholder has a participating interest of more than 10 percent, holds a position on the governing body of the business, or serves as an officer of the business; and

(8)  on a separate page or pages of the report, the identification of any contribution from a corporation or labor organization made and accepted under Subchapter D, Chapter 253.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.17, eff. Jan. 1, 1992.



Section  254.1211.  Additional Contents Of Reports Of Certain Committees. In A

ddition to the contents required by Sections 254.031 and 254.121, each report by a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing a candidate for or assisting a holder of a judicial office covered by Subchapter F, Chapter 253, must include the contents prescribed by Section 254.0611.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 763, Sec. 5, eff. July 1, 1995.



Section  254.1212.  Additional Contents Of Reports Of Committee Supporting Or Opposing Candidate For Statewide Executive Officeholders Or Legislative Officeholders Or Assisting Statewide Executive Officeholders Or Legislative Officeholders. In A

ddition to the contents required by Sections 254.031 and 254.121, each report by a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing a candidate for or assisting a holder of a statewide office in the executive branch or a legislative office must include the contents prescribed by Section 254.0612.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.19, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.122.  Involvement In More Than One Election By Certain Committees.

If a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing more than one candidate becomes involved in more than one election for which the reporting periods prescribed by Section 254.124 overlap, the reportable activity that occurs during the overlapping period is not required to be included in a report filed after the first report in which the activity is required to be reported.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.123.  Semiannual Reporting Schedule For Committee.

(a) The campaign treasurer of a specific-purpose committee shall file two reports for each year as provided by this section.

(b)  The first report shall be filed not later than July 15. The report covers the period beginning January 1, the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this subchapter, as applicable, and continuing through June 30.

(c)  The second report shall be filed not later than January 15. The report covers the period beginning July 1, the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this subchapter, as applicable, and continuing through December 31.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.124.  Additional Reports Of Committee For Supporting Or Opposing Candidate Or Measure.

(a) In addition to other required reports, for each election in which a specific-purpose committee supports or opposes a candidate or measure, the committee's campaign treasurer shall file two reports.

(b)  The first report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the 30th day before election day.  The report covers the period beginning the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed or the first day after the period covered by the committee's last required report, as applicable, and continuing through the 40th day before election day.

(c)  The second report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the eighth day before election day.  The report covers the period beginning the 39th day before election day and continuing through the 10th day before election day.

(d)  If a specific-purpose committee supports or opposes a candidate or measure in an election after a reporting period prescribed by Subsection (b) or (c), the first report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the regular deadline for the report covering the period during which the committee becomes involved in the election.  The period covered by the first report begins the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed or the first day after the period covered by the committee's last required report, as applicable.

(e)  In addition to other required reports, the campaign treasurer of a specific-purpose committee that supports or opposes a candidate in a runoff election shall file one report for the runoff election.  The runoff election report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the eighth day before runoff election day.  The report covers the period beginning the ninth day before the date of the main election and continuing through the 10th day before runoff election day.

(f)  This section does not apply to a specific-purpose committee supporting only candidates who do not have opponents whose names are to appear on the ballot.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 2, Sec. 7.17(a), eff. Aug. 28, 1989.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 673, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 553, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  254.125.  Final Report Of Committee For Supporting Or Opposing Candidate Or Measure.

(a) If a specific-purpose committee for supporting or opposing a candidate or measure expects no reportable activity in connection with the election to occur after the period covered by a report filed under this subchapter, the committee's campaign treasurer may designate the report as a "final" report.

(b)  The designation of a report as a final report:

(1)  relieves the campaign treasurer of the duty to file additional reports under this subchapter, except as provided by Subsection (c); and

(2)  terminates the committee's campaign treasurer appointment.

(c)  If, after a committee's final report is filed, reportable activity with respect to the election occurs, the committee must file the appropriate reports under this subchapter and is otherwise subject to the provisions of this title applicable to political committees. A report filed under this subsection may be designated as a final report.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.126.  Dissolution Report Of Committee For Assisting Officeholder.

(a) If a specific-purpose committee for assisting an officeholder expects no reportable activity to occur after the period covered by a report filed under this subchapter, the committee's campaign treasurer may designate the report as a "dissolution" report.

(b)  The filing of a report designated as a dissolution report:

(1)  relieves the campaign treasurer of the duty to file additional reports under this subchapter; and

(2)  terminates the committee's campaign treasurer appointment.

(c)  A dissolution report must contain an affidavit, executed by the committee's campaign treasurer, that states that all the committee's reportable activity has been reported.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.127.  Termination Report.

(a) If the campaign treasurer appointment of a specific-purpose committee is terminated, the terminated campaign treasurer shall file a termination report.

(b)  A termination report is not required if the termination occurs on the last day of a reporting period under this subchapter and a report for that period is filed as provided by this subchapter.

(c)  The report covers the period beginning the day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this subchapter and continuing through the day the campaign treasurer appointment is terminated.

(d)  The report shall be filed not later than the 10th day after the date the campaign treasurer appointment is terminated.

(e)  Reportable activity contained in a termination report is not required to be included in any subsequent report of the committee that is filed under this subchapter. The period covered by the committee's first report filed under this subchapter after a termination report begins the day after the date the campaign treasurer appointment is terminated.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.128.  Notice To Candidate And Officeholder Of Contributions And Expenditures.

(a) If a specific-purpose committee accepts political contributions or makes political expenditures for a candidate or officeholder, the committee's campaign treasurer shall deliver written notice of that fact to the affected candidate or officeholder not later than the end of the period covered by the report in which the reportable activity occurs.

(b)  The notice must include the full name and address of the political committee and its campaign treasurer and an indication that the committee is a specific-purpose committee.

(c)  A campaign treasurer commits an offense if the campaign treasurer fails to comply with this section. An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 864, Sec. 246, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  254.129.  Notice Of Change In Committee Status.

(a) If a specific-purpose committee changes its operation and becomes a general-purpose committee, the committee's campaign treasurer shall deliver written notice of the change in status to the authority with whom the specific-purpose committee's reports under this chapter are required to be filed.

(b)  The notice shall be delivered not later than the next deadline for filing a report under this subchapter that:

(1)  occurs after the change in status; and

(2)  would be applicable to the political committee if the committee had not changed its status.

(c)  The notice must indicate the filing authority with whom future filings are expected to be made.

(d)  A campaign treasurer commits an offense if the campaign treasurer fails to comply with this section. An offense under this section is a Class B misdemeanor.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 864, Sec. 247, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section 254.130.  Authority With Whom Reports Filed.

Reports filed under this subchapter shall be filed with the authority with whom the political committee's campaign treasurer appointment is required to be filed.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 511, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 518, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.



Subchapter F. Reporting By General-purpose Committee

Section  254.151.  Additional Contents Of Reports.

In addition to the contents required by Section 254.031, each report by a campaign treasurer of a general-purpose committee must include:

(1)  the committee's full name and address;

(2)  the full name, residence or business street address, and telephone number of the committee's campaign treasurer;

(3)  the identity and date of the election for which the report is filed, if applicable;

(4)  the name of each identified candidate or measure or classification by party of candidates supported or opposed by the committee, indicating whether the committee supports or opposes each listed candidate, measure, or classification by party of candidates;

(5)  the name of each identified officeholder or classification by party of officeholders assisted by the committee;

(6)  the principal occupation of each person from whom political contributions that in the aggregate exceed $50 are accepted during the reporting period;

(7)  the amount of each political expenditure in the form of a political contribution made to a candidate, officeholder, or another political committee that is returned to the committee during the reporting period, the name of the person to whom the expenditure was originally made, and the date it is returned;

(8)  on a separate page or pages of the report, the identification of any contribution from a corporation or labor organization made and accepted under Subchapter D, Chapter 253; and

(9)  on a separate page or pages of the report, the identification of the name of the donor, the amount, and the date of any expenditure made by a corporation or labor organization to:

(A)  establish or administer the political committee; or

(B)  finance the solicitation of political contributions to the committee under Section 253.100.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 304, Sec. 5.18, eff. Jan. 1, 1992; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.20, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.152.  Time For Reporting Certain Expenditures.

If a general-purpose committee makes a political expenditure in the form of a political contribution to another general-purpose committee or to an out-of-state political committee and the contributing committee does not intend that the contribution be used in connection with a particular election, the contributing committee shall include the expenditure in the first report required to be filed under this subchapter after the expenditure is made.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.153.  Semiannual Reporting Schedule For Committee.

(a) The campaign treasurer of a general-purpose committee shall file two reports for each year as provided by this section.

(b)  The first report shall be filed not later than July 15. The report covers the period beginning January 1, the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this subchapter, as applicable, and continuing through June 30.

(c)  The second report shall be filed not later than January 15. The report covers the period beginning July 1, the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed, or the first day after the period covered by the last report required to be filed under this subchapter, as applicable, and continuing through December 31.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.154.  Additional Reports Of Committee Involved In Election.

(a) In addition to other required reports, for each election in which a general-purpose committee is involved, the committee's campaign treasurer shall file two reports.

(b)  The first report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the 30th day before election day.  The report covers the period beginning the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed or the first day after the period covered by the committee's last required report, as applicable, and continuing through the 40th day before election day.

(c)  The second report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the eighth day before election day.  The report covers the period beginning the 39th day before election day and continuing through the 10th day before election day.

(d)  If a general-purpose committee becomes involved in an election after a reporting period prescribed by Subsection (b) or (c), the first report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the regular deadline for the report covering the period during which the committee becomes involved in the election.  The period covered by the first report begins the day the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed or the first day after the period covered by the committee's last required report, as applicable.

(e)  In addition to other required reports, the campaign treasurer of a general-purpose committee involved in a runoff election shall file one report for the runoff election.  The runoff election report must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not earlier than the 10th day or later than the eighth day before runoff election day.  The report covers the period beginning the ninth day before the date of the main election and continuing through the 10th day before runoff election day.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 673, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 553, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 254.1541.  Alternate Reporting Requirements For Certain Committees.

(a) This section applies only to a general-purpose committee with less than $20,000 in one or more accounts maintained by the committee in which political contributions are deposited, as of the last day of the preceding reporting period for which the committee was required to file a report.

(b)  A report by a campaign treasurer of a general-purpose committee to which this section applies may include, instead of the information required under Sections 254.031(a)(1) and (5) and Section 254.151(6):

(1)  the amount of political contributions from each person that in the aggregate exceed $100 and that are accepted during the reporting period by the committee, the full name and address of the person making the contributions, the person's principal occupation, and the dates of the contributions; and

(2)  the total amount or a specific listing of the political contributions of $100 or less accepted and the total amount or a specific listing of the political expenditures of $100 or less made during the reporting period.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1081, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  254.155.  Option To File Monthly; Notice.

(a) As an alternative to filing reports under Sections 254.153 and 254.154, a general-purpose committee may file monthly reports.

(b)  To be entitled to file monthly reports, the committee must deliver written notice of the committee's intent to file monthly to the commission not earlier than January 1 or later than January 15 of the year in which the committee intends to file monthly. The notice for a committee formed after January 15 must be delivered at the time the committee's campaign treasurer appointment is filed.

(c)  A committee that files monthly reports may revert to the regular filing schedule prescribed by Sections 254.153 and 254.154 by delivering written notice of the committee's intent not earlier than January 1 or later than January 15 of the year in which the committee intends to revert to the regular reporting schedule. The notice must include a report of all political contributions accepted and all political expenditures made that were not previously reported.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 3.18, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Section 254.156.  Contents Of Monthly Reports.

Each monthly report filed under this subchapter must comply with Sections 254.031 and 254.151 except that the maximum amount of a political contribution, expenditure, or loan that is not required to be individually reported is:

(1)  $10 in the aggregate; or

(2)  $20 in the aggregate for a contribution accepted by a general-purpose committee to which Section 254.1541 applies.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1081, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  254.157.  Monthly Reporting Schedule.

(a) The campaign treasurer of a general-purpose committee filing monthly reports shall file a report not later than the fifth day of the month following the period covered by the report. A report covering the month preceding an election in which the committee is involved must be received by the authority with whom the report is required to be filed not later than the fifth day of the month following the period covered by the report.

(b)  A monthly report covers the period beginning the 26th day of each month and continuing through the 25th day of the following month, except that the period covered by the first report begins January 1 and continues through January 25.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 400, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 673, Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  254.158.  Exception To Monthly Reporting Schedule.

If the campaign treasurer appointment of a general-purpose committee filing monthly reports is filed after January 1 of the year in which monthly reports are filed, the period covered by the first monthly report begins the day the appointment is filed and continues through the 25th day of the month in which the appointment is filed unless the appointment is filed the 25th or a succeeding day of the month. In that case, the period continues through the 25th day of the month following the month in which the appointment is filed.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.1581.  Reporting By Out-of-state Political Committee.

For each reporting period under this subchapter in which an out-of-state political committee accepts political contributions or makes political expenditures, the committee shall file with the commission a copy of one or more reports filed with the Federal Election Commission or with the proper filing authority of at least one other state that shows the political contributions accepted, political expenditures made, and other expenditures made by the committee. A report must be filed within the same period in which it is required to be filed under federal law or the law of the other state.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.21, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.159.  Dissolution Report.

If a general-purpose committee expects no reportable activity to occur after the period covered by a report filed under this subchapter, the report may be designated as a "dissolution" report as provided by Section 254.126 for a specific-purpose committee and has the same effect.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.160.  Termination Report.

If the campaign treasurer appointment of a general-purpose committee is terminated, the campaign treasurer shall file a termination report as prescribed by Section 254.127 for a specific-purpose committee.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.161.  Notice To Candidate And Officeholder Of Contributions And Expenditures.

If a general-purpose committee other than the principal political committee of a political party or a political committee established by a political party's county executive committee accepts political contributions or makes political expenditures for a candidate or officeholder, notice of that fact shall be given to the affected candidate or officeholder as provided by Section 254.128 for a specific-purpose committee.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 531, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1993.



Section  254.162.  Notice Of Change In Committee Status.

If a general-purpose committee changes its operation and becomes a specific-purpose committee, notice of the change in status shall be given to the commission as provided by Section 254.129 for a specific-purpose committee.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 3.19, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Section  254.163.  Authority With Whom Reports Filed.

Reports filed under this subchapter shall be filed with the commission.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 3.20, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Section 254.164.  Certain Committees Exempt From Civil Penalties.

The commission may not impose a civil penalty on a general-purpose committee for a violation of this chapter if the report filed by the committee that is the subject of the violation discloses that the committee did not accept political contributions totaling $3,000 or more, accept political contributions from a single person totaling $1,000 or more, or make or authorize political expenditures totaling $3,000 or more during:

(1)  the reporting period covered by the report that is the subject of the violation; or

(2)  either of the two reporting periods preceding the reporting period described by Subdivision (1).

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 597, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2007.



Subchapter G. Modified Reporting Procedures; $500 Maximum In Contributions Or Expenditures

Section  254.181.  Modified Reporting Authorized.

(a) An opposed candidate or specific-purpose committee required to file reports under Subchapter C or E may file a report under this subchapter instead if the candidate or committee does not intend to accept political contributions that in the aggregate exceed $500 or to make political expenditures that in the aggregate exceed $500 in connection with the election.

(b)  The amount of a filing fee paid by a candidate is excluded from the $500 maximum expenditure permitted under this section.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.182.  Declaration Of Intent Required.

(a) To be entitled to file reports under this subchapter, an opposed candidate or specific-purpose committee must file with the campaign treasurer appointment a written declaration of intent not to exceed $500 in political contributions or political expenditures in the election.

(b)  The declaration of intent must contain a statement that the candidate or committee understands that if the $500 maximum for contributions and expenditures is exceeded, the candidate or committee is required to file reports under Subchapter C or E, as applicable.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.183.  Maximum Exceeded.

(a) An opposed candidate or specific-purpose committee that exceeds $500 in political contributions or political expenditures in the election shall file reports as required by Subchapter C or E, as applicable.

(b)  If a candidate or committee exceeds the $500 maximum after the filing deadline prescribed by Subchapter C or E for the first report required to be filed under the appropriate subchapter, the candidate or committee shall file a report not later than 48 hours after the maximum is exceeded.

(c)  A report filed under Subsection (b) covers the period beginning the day the campaign treasurer appointment is filed and continuing through the day the maximum is exceeded.

(d)  The reporting period for the next report filed by the candidate or committee begins on the day after the last day of the period covered by the report filed under Subsection (b).

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.184.  Applicability Of Regular Reporting Requirements.

(a) Subchapter C or E, as applicable, applies to an opposed candidate or specific-purpose committee filing under this subchapter to the extent that the appropriate subchapter does not conflict with this subchapter.

(b)  A candidate or committee filing under this subchapter is not required to file any reports of political contributions and political expenditures other than the semiannual reports required to be filed not later than July 15 and January 15.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Subchapter H. Unexpended Contributions

Section  254.201.  Annual Report Of Unexpended Contributions.

(a) This section applies to:

(1)  a former officeholder who has unexpended political contributions after filing the last report required to be filed by Subchapter D; or

(2)  a person who was an unsuccessful candidate who has unexpended political contributions after filing the last report required to be filed by Subchapter C.

(b)  A person covered by this section shall file an annual report for each year in which the person retains unexpended contributions.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.202.  Filing Of Report; Contents.

(a) A person shall file the report required by Section 254.201 not earlier than January 1 or later than January 15 of each year following the year in which the person files a final report under this chapter.

(b)  The report shall be filed with the authority with whom the person's campaign treasurer appointment was required to be filed.

(c)  The report must include:

(1)  the person's full name and address;

(2)  the full name and address of each person to whom a payment from unexpended political contributions was made during the previous year;

(3)  the date, amount, and purpose of each payment made under Subdivision (2);

(4)  the total amount of unexpended political contributions as of December 31 of the previous year; and

(5)  the total amount of interest and other income earned on unexpended political contributions during the previous year.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.203.  Retention Of Contributions.

(a) A person may not retain political contributions covered by this title, assets purchased with the contributions, or interest and other income earned on the contributions for more than six years after the date the person either ceases to be an officeholder or candidate or files a final report under this chapter, whichever is later.

(b)  If the person becomes an officeholder or candidate within the six-year period, the prohibition in Subsection (a) does not apply until the person again ceases to be an officeholder or candidate.

(c)  A person who violates Subsection (a) commits an offense. An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 2, Sec. 7.18, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  254.204.  Disposition Of Unexpended Contributions.

(a) At the end of the six-year period prescribed by Section 254.203, the former officeholder or candidate shall remit any unexpended political contributions to one or more of the following:

(1)  the political party with which the person was affiliated when the person's name last appeared on a ballot;

(2)  a candidate or political committee;

(3)  the comptroller for deposit in the state treasury;

(4)  one or more persons from whom political contributions were received, in accordance with Subsection (d);

(5)  a recognized charitable organization formed for educational, religious, or scientific purposes that is exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3), Internal Revenue Code of 1986, and its subsequent amendments; or

(6)  a public or private postsecondary educational institution or an institution of higher education as defined by Section 61.003(8), Education Code, solely for the purpose of assisting or creating a scholarship program.

(b)  A person who disposes of unexpended political contributions under Subsection (a)(2) shall report each contribution as if the person were a campaign treasurer of a specific-purpose committee.

(c)  Political contributions disposed of under Subsection (a)(3) may be appropriated only for financing primary elections.

(d)  The amount of political contributions disposed of under Subsection (a)(4) to one person may not exceed the aggregate amount accepted from that person during the last two years that the candidate or officeholder accepted contributions under this title.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 864, Sec. 248, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 249, Sec. 2.22, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  254.205.  Report Of Disposition Of Unexpended Contributions.

(a) Not later than the 30th day after the date the six-year period prescribed by Section 254.203 ends, the person required to dispose of unexpended political contributions shall file a report of the disposition.

(b)  The report shall be filed with the authority with whom the person's campaign treasurer appointment was required to be filed.

(c)  The report must include:

(1)  the person's full name and address;

(2)  the full name and address of each person to whom a payment from unexpended political contributions is made; and

(3)  the date and amount of each payment reported under Subdivision (2).

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Subchapter I. Civil Liability

Section  254.231.  Liability To Candidates.

(a) A candidate or campaign treasurer or assistant campaign treasurer of a political committee who fails to report in whole or in part a campaign contribution or campaign expenditure as required by this chapter is liable for damages as provided by this section.

(b)  Each opposing candidate whose name appears on the ballot is entitled to recover damages under this section.

(c)  In this section, "damages" means:

(1)  twice the amount not reported that is required to be reported; and

(2)  reasonable attorney's fees incurred in the suit.

(d)  Reasonable attorney's fees incurred in the suit may be awarded to the defendant if judgment is rendered in the defendant's favor.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.



Section  254.232.  Liability To State.

A candidate, officeholder, or campaign treasurer or assistant campaign treasurer of a political committee who fails to report in whole or in part a political contribution or political expenditure as required by this chapter is liable in damages to the state in the amount of triple the amount not reported that is required to be reported.

Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 899, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987.


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