2004 Florida Statutes
Reports by political parties; restrictions on contributions and expenditures; penalties.
(1) The state executive committee and each county executive committee of each political party regulated by chapter 103 shall file regular reports of all contributions received and all expenditures made by such committee. Such reports shall contain the same information as do reports required of candidates by s. 106.07 and shall be filed on the 10th day following the end of each calendar quarter, except that, during the period from the last day for candidate qualifying until the general election, such reports shall be filed on the Friday immediately preceding the first primary election, the second primary election, and the general election. Each state executive committee shall file the original and one copy of its reports with the Division of Elections. Each county executive committee shall file its reports with the supervisor of elections in the county in which such committee exists. Any state or county executive committee failing to file a report on the designated due date shall be subject to a fine as provided in subsection (3). No separate fine shall be assessed for failure to file a copy of any report required by this section.
(2) The chair and treasurer of each state or county executive committee shall certify as to the correctness of each report filed by them on behalf of such committee. Any committee chair or treasurer who certifies the correctness of any report while knowing that such report is incorrect, false, or incomplete commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084
(3)(a) Any state or county executive committee failing to file a report on the designated due date shall be subject to a fine as provided in paragraph (b) for each late day. The fine shall be assessed by the filing officer, and the moneys collected shall be deposited in the General Revenue Fund.
(b) Upon determining that a report is late, the filing officer shall immediately notify the chair of the executive committee as to the failure to file a report by the designated due date and that a fine is being assessed for each late day. The fine shall be $1,000 for a state executive committee, and $50 for a county executive committee, per day for each late day, not to exceed 25 percent of the total receipts or expenditures, whichever is greater, for the period covered by the late report. However, if an executive committee fails to file a report on the Friday immediately preceding the general election, the fine shall be $10,000 per day for each day a state executive committee is late and $500 per day for each day a county executive committee is late. Upon receipt of the report, the filing officer shall determine the amount of the fine which is due and shall notify the chair. The filing officer shall determine the amount of the fine due based upon the earliest of the following:
1. When the report is actually received by such officer.
2. When the report is postmarked.
3. When the certificate of mailing is dated.
4. When the receipt from an established courier company is dated.
5. When the electronic receipt issued pursuant to s. 106.0705 is dated.
Such fine shall be paid to the filing officer within 20 days after receipt of the notice of payment due, unless appeal is made to the Florida Elections Commission pursuant to paragraph (c). An officer or member of an executive committee shall not be personally liable for such fine.
(c) The chair of an executive committee may appeal or dispute the fine, based upon unusual circumstances surrounding the failure to file on the designated due date, and may request and shall be entitled to a hearing before the Florida Elections Commission, which shall have the authority to waive the fine in whole or in part. Any such request shall be made within 20 days after receipt of the notice of payment due. In such case, the chair of the executive committee shall, within the 20-day period, notify the filing officer in writing of his or her intention to bring the matter before the commission.
(d) The appropriate filing officer shall notify the Florida Elections Commission of the repeated late filing by an executive committee, the failure of an executive committee to file a report after notice, or the failure to pay the fine imposed.
(4) Any contribution received by a state or county executive committee less than 5 days before an election shall not be used or expended in behalf of any candidate, issue, or political party participating in such election.
(5) No state or county executive committee, in the furtherance of any candidate or political party, directly or indirectly, shall give, pay, or expend any money, give or pay anything of value, authorize any expenditure, or become pecuniarily liable for any expenditure prohibited by this chapter. However, the contribution of funds by one executive committee to another or to established party organizations for legitimate party or campaign purposes is not prohibited, but all such contributions shall be recorded and accounted for in the reports of the contributor and recipient.
(6)(a) The national, state, and county executive committees of a political party may not contribute to any candidate any amount in excess of the limits contained in s. 106.08(2), and all contributions required to be reported under s. 106.08(2) by the national executive committee of a political party shall be reported by the state executive committee of that political party.
(b) A violation of the contribution limits contained in s. 106.08(2) is a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083 A civil penalty equal to three times the amount in excess of the limits contained in s. 106.08(2) shall be assessed against any executive committee found in violation thereof.
History.--s. 29, ch. 73-128; s. 14, ch. 74-200; s. 62, ch. 77-175; s. 65, ch. 79-400; ss. 14, 33, ch. 81-304; s. 1, ch. 82-46; s. 13, ch. 82-143; s. 2, ch. 83-265; s. 40, ch. 84-302; s. 23, ch. 89-256; s. 39, ch. 90-315; ss. 10, 14, ch. 90-338; ss. 8, 12, ch. 91-107; s. 3, ch. 95-140; s. 653, ch. 95-147; s. 8, ch. 97-13; ss. 23, 24, ch. 2004-252.