Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 152691
Printable PDF Format Download Adobe Reader  

File Number: 152691 File Type: Ordinance Status: Deferred by the Board
Version: 0 Reference: Control: Board of County Commissioners
File Name: SOLICITATION OF CONTRIBUTIONS FOR POLITICAL COMMITTEES Introduced: 11/17/2015
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action:
Agenda Date: 5/17/2016 Agenda Item Number: 7A
Notes: SEE SUPPLEMENT 160640 Title: ORDINANCE CREATING SECTION 12-14.2 OF THE CODE OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, TO PROVIDE FOR REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR COUNTY AND MUNICIPAL ELECTED OFFICERS AND CANDIDATES REGARDING SOLICITATION OF CONTRIBUTIONS FOR POLITICAL COMMITTEES AND ELECTIONEERING COMMUNICATIONS ORGANIZATIONS; PROVIDING PENALTIES FOR FAILURE TO REPORT; PROVIDING FOR ENFORCEMENT BY THE COMMISSION ON ETHICS AND PUBLIC TRUST; PROVIDING SEVERABILITY, INCLUSION IN THE CODE AND AN EFFECTIVE DATE
Indexes: ELECTED OFFICIALS
  SOLICITATIONS
Sponsors: Daniella Levine Cava, Prime Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 5/17/2016 7A Amended
REPORT: It was moved by Commissioner Levine Cava that the foregoing proposed ordinance be adopted as amended on handwritten page 6, Section 1, under Sec. 12-14.2., as follows: To replace Subsection (1) with the following language: “Effective January 1, 2017, each candidate for County or municipal office in Miami-Dade County shall insure that their designated campaign treasurer shall, within five (5) days of commencing solicitation activities, either directly or indirectly, on behalf of a political committee or electioneering communications organization, file a one-time report with the Supervisor of Elections or other applicable filing officer indicating that the candidate is undertaking solicitation activities on behalf of such political committee or electioneering communications organization on behalf of whom such funds are being solicited and a description of the relationship between the candidate and the political committee or electioneering communications organization. The report shall be filed on a form created by the Supervisor of Elections for such purpose.” To replace Subsection (2) with the following language: “Effective January 1, 2016, upon commencement of any solicitation activities undertaken on behalf of any political committee or electioneering communications organization, each County or municipal elected officer in Miami-Dade County who is not also a candidate for another County or municipal office shall, within five (5) days of commencing solicitation activities, either directly or indirectly, on behalf of a political committee or electioneering communications organization, file a one-time report with the Supervisor of Elections or other applicable filing officer indicating that the officer is undertaking solicitation activities on behalf of such organization. The report shall identify the name of the organization on behalf of whom such funds are being solicited and a description of the relationship0 between the officer and the political committee or electioneering communications organization. The report shall be filed on a form created by the Supervisor of Elections for such purpose.” To replace Subsection (3) with the following language: “Any County or municipal elected officer or candidate who fails to file a report as required by this section on the designated due date shall, for the first violation, be sent a letter of reprimand and instruction regarding the provisions of this Section, and for each subsequent violation, be subject to a fine of $50 per day for the first three (3) days and, thereafter, $500 per day for each day late not to exceed $5,000. Such fine shall not be an allowable campaign expense and shall be paid only from the personal funds of the candidate or officer. Any candidate or officer may appeal or dispute the fine to the Miami-Dade County Commission on Ethics and Public Trust based upon, but not limited to, designated due date, and may request, and shall be entitled to, a hearing before the Commission on Ethics and Public Trust, which shall have the authority to waive the fine in whole or in part. Any such appeal or dispute shall be made within twenty (20) days after receipt of notice from the Supervisor of Elections that payment is due or such appeal or dispute shall be waived.” This motion was seconded by Commissioner Bovo, and upon being put to a vote, passed by a vote of 7-1 (Commissioner Jordan voted NO; Commissioners Diaz, Heyman, Moss, Sosa and Zapata were absent). The amended version has been assigned Ordinance No. 16-46.

Board of County Commissioners 4/19/2016 7A Deferred 5/17/2016 P
REPORT: The foregoing proposed ordinance was deferred to the County Commission meeting on May 17, 2016.

Board of County Commissioners 3/28/2016 2A3 Presented

Board of County Commissioners 2/2/2016 7B Deferred P
REPORT: First Assistant County Attorney Geri Bonzon-Keenan read the foregoing proposed ordinance into the record. Assistant County Attorney Oren Rosenthal read, into the record, amendments proposed by Commissioner Levine Cava. Commissioner Levine Cava explained her proposed amendments were intended to reduce the burden on the Elections Department. She emphasized the importance of taking steps to increase transparency and accountability, consistent with requirements in state law and other counties. Mr. Joseph Centorino, Executive Director, Miami-Dade Commission on Ethics and Public Trust (COE), noted the COE Board voted unanimously, at its last meeting, to support this item. He commented on Commissioner Levine Cava’s initiative to bring transparency to the area of political activity and fundraising that generally was not as publicly visible as campaign fundraising. In response to Commissioner Suarez’ question whether he was required to file the electronic report with respect to his serving as president of the “Imagine Miami PAC (Political Action Committee),” Assistant County Attorney Oren Rosenthal advised the foregoing proposed amendment required that he file a one-time statement stating the Imagine Miami PAC solicited contributions at his direction. Mr. Rosenthal stated Commissioner Suarez would not be required to file any additional statements regarding that PAC. With respect to Commissioner Suarez’ question regarding requirements for soliciting contributions for his son’s Electioneering Communication Organization (ECO), Mr. Rosenthal stated Commissioner Suarez must file a form stating he solicited for that ECO and identify the successful contributions he solicited. Mr. Rosenthal advised Commissioner Suarez of the requirement to complete a form reporting his successful solicitation of contributions for either a PAC or ECO. Commissioner Levine Cava stressed the word “successful” was included in the amendment and was about campaign financing rather than sunshine law. Responding to Commissioner Suarez’ question whether federal law pre-empted the County from passing additional requirements pertaining to federal elections, Mr. Rosenthal stated the requirement pertained to municipal or county-elected officials or candidates, not the federal PAC or federal issues. Commissioner Moss asked whether an explanation on the purpose and rules for the various committees would be forthcoming. Commissioner Diaz expressed concern that this issue needed to be vetted further and presented various scenarios that could impact an individual’s ability to understand and adhere to the rules related to this legislation. Citing the potential for violation due to unforeseen circumstances, he suggested a workshop be scheduled to discussion this matter further. Commissioner Zapata cautioned against unintended consequences stemming from this type of legislation and inquired as to how far back candidates/elected officials would need to reference when reporting solicitations. Mr. Rosenthal explained the obligation to report solicitations would begin with those made ten days after passage of this ordinance and applied only to solicited funds. Discussion ensued between Commission members and Mr. Rosenthal regarding the need for a workshop to discuss this issue further. A majority of Board members expressed concern with supporting this ordinance as written, emphasizing the potential for unintended consequences. Commissioner Zapata noted his concern with political parties, 501(c)4 organizations, and lobbyists being exempted from this legislation while yet allowed to engage in activities related to political candidacy. He expressed concern with ten days being too short a timeline for this legislation to be implemented since some individuals were currently involved in campaign activity. In response to Commissioner Edmonson’s request for clarification on the word “indirectly” on handwritten page 6, in the second sentence in Subsection (1), that read: “…The report shall identify each contribution solicited, directly or indirectly, by the candidate…,” Mr. Rosenthal explained this referred to a candidate’s campaign staff’s soliciting contributions. Responding to Commissioner Moss’ inquiry as to whether the rules supporting this issue required the candidate to complete a form for the duration of their term, Mr. Rosenthal explained the process for soliciting for a PAC or ECO which required monthly filing for the duration of the term. Following additional discussion in support of a workshop to vet these issues further, it was moved by Commissioner Levine Cava that the foregoing proposed ordinance be deferred, as amended, pending a workshop. Assistant County Attorney Oren Rosenthal clarified the motion was to amend the foregoing proposed ordinance; to defer the amended version to no-date-certain; and to conduct a workshop, after which this ordinance would be placed again on the agenda for the Board’s consideration. In response to Commissioner Levine Cava’s request that the proposed workshop be held in February 2016, Chairman Monestime recommended it be scheduled in March 2016, due to events already in the pipeline for February. There being no further questions or comments, the Board proceeded to vote on the motion to defer and amend the foregoing proposed ordinance. The Board voted to defer the foregoing ordinance to no-date-certain and to adopt the following amendments into the ordinance: On handwritten page 6, Section 12-14, In Subsection (1) - to change the beginning of the first sentence to read: “…Each candidate for County or municipal office in Miami-Dade County shall ensure that their designated campaign treasurer shall at the time of filing any contribution or expenditure reports otherwise required by law…;” - at the end of the eighth line, to insert the word “successfully” between the words “contribution” and “solicited;” and - at the end of the subsection, to add the following language: “…A candidate may comply with the reporting requirements of this subsection by filing a one-time report indicating that all contributions to an identified political committee or electioneering communications organization were solicited either directly or indirectly by the candidate. Upon filing such report, no further reports shall be required under this subsection for solicitations on behalf of the identified political committee or electioneering communications organization during any reporting period…” In Subsection (2) – to replace the first sentence with the following language: “…Upon commencement of any solicitation activities undertaken on behalf of any political committee or electioneering communications organization, each County or municipal elected officer in Miami-Dade County, who is not also a candidate for another County or municipal office shall, on a monthly basis for the remainder of the officer’s term of office, file an electronic report with the Supervisor of Elections or other applicable filing officer, regarding such solicitation activity during the preceding month…;” - in the second sentence, to insert the word “successfully” between the words “contribution” and “solicited;” and - at the end of this subsection, to add the following language: “,,,A county or municipal elected official may comply with the reporting requirements of this subsection by filing a one-time report indicating that all contributions to an identified political committee or electioneering communications organization were solicited either directly or indirectly by the County or municipal elected official. Upon filing such report, no further reports shall be required under this subsection for solicitations on behalf of the identified political committee or electioneering communications organization during the remainder of the County or municipal elected official’s term…” In Subsection (3), handwritten page 7, line 8 – to delete the words “no change” and replace it with “may appeal;” in line 16 after the word “notice”, to add the phrase “from the Supervisor of Elections.” Assistant County Attorney Oren Rosenthal advised that the foregoing amendments would clarify several issues in the item and allow candidates and current officials to file a one-time statement that read: “…all solicitations for a particular pack or committee was solicited by the candidate…,” which would prevent the filing of a monthly statement. He noted the amendments would also make the requirement on the County or municipal elected officer apply for the entire term, but to apply only upon commencement of the activity.

Strategic Planning & Government Operations Cmte 1/12/2016 1G1 Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Juliette Antoine read the foregoing proposed ordinance into the record. Vice Chair Sosa inquired if the candidate did not have any political committees or any electioneering communications organizations, will there be a place on the form created by the elections department for candidates to disclose that information as well. She explained that it was important to know both, if the candidates did or did not have any political committees or electioneering communications organizations. Commissioner Levine Cava responded that she was certain that was within the implementation of this ordinance, and asked a representative from the Elections department to respond to Vice Chair Sosa’s inquiry. Ms. Christina White, Supervisor of Elections Designee, Elections Department explained that the typical campaign finance reporting, if there was no activity a waiver of report would be filed, but this form can indicate that if the Committee preferred that method. If a person did not engage in such activity then they would not be required to file the form. Vice Chair Sosa noted that she did not want to punish the people that didn’t have any committees or any electioneering communications organization. Commissioner Levine Cava noted that this legislation was a step forward towards informing the public and creating greater transparency. She expressed appreciation to Committee members for their support. Hearing no questions or comments, the Committee proceeded to vote on the foregoing proposed ordinance, as presented.

Board of County Commissioners 12/1/2015 Tentatively scheduled for a public hearing Strategic Planning & Government Operations Cmte 1/12/2016

Board of County Commissioners 12/1/2015 4A Adopted on first reading 1/12/2016 P
REPORT: The foregoing proposed ordinance was adopted on first reading and scheduled for public hearing before the Strategic Planning and Government Operations (SPGO) Committee on Tuesday, January 12, 2016 at 9.30 a.m.

County Attorney 11/17/2015 Referred Strategic Planning & Government Operations Cmte 1/12/2016

County Attorney 11/17/2015 Assigned Oren Rosenthal 11/18/2015

Legislative Text


TITLE
ORDINANCE CREATING SECTION 12-14.2 OF THE CODE OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, TO PROVIDE FOR REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR COUNTY AND MUNICIPAL ELECTED OFFICERS AND CANDIDATES REGARDING SOLICITATION OF CONTRIBUTIONS FOR POLITICAL COMMITTEES AND ELECTIONEERING COMMUNICATIONS ORGANIZATIONS; PROVIDING PENALTIES FOR FAILURE TO REPORT; PROVIDING FOR ENFORCEMENT BY THE COMMISSION ON ETHICS AND PUBLIC TRUST; PROVIDING SEVERABILITY, INCLUSION IN THE CODE AND AN EFFECTIVE DATE

BODY

WHEREAS, this Board believes that transparency and accountability in government is fundamental to the publicís faith in the democratic process; and
WHEREAS, this Board desires that campaign fundraising activities by candidates and public officials be transparent and accessible by all residents of Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, fundraising through political committees and electioneering communications organizations creates the potential for anonymous campaign fundraising that can function as a barrier between citizens and those seeking to represent them in elective office; and
WHEREAS, state law and the rules of the Florida legislature currently require that some state officers and legislators disclose when they fundraise for political committees or electioneering communication organizations; and
WHEREAS, this Board desires to establish similar requirements for County and municipal officials and candidates within Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, requiring public officials and candidates to publicly disclose their fundraising activities for political committees or electioneering communications organizations would provide needed sunlight on the campaign fundraising process and allow voters to make informed decision about candidates,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA:
Section 1. Section 12-14.2 of the Code of Miami-Dade County, Florida, is hereby created to read as follows in its entirety:
Sec. 12-14.2. County and Municipal Elected Officer and Candidate Reporting Requirements for Political Committee and Electioneering Communication Organization Solicitations.

(1) Each campaign treasurer designated by a candidate for County or municipal office in Miami-Dade County shall, at the time of filing any contribution or expenditure reports otherwise required by law, file an additional electronic report with the Supervisor of Elections or other applicable filing officer regarding solicitation activities on behalf of any political committee or electioneering communications organization. The report shall identify each contribution solicited, directly or indirectly, by the candidate, the name of the person or entity contributing the funds, the name of the political committee or electioneering communications organization on behalf of whom such funds were solicited, the amount of the contribution, and a description of the relationship between the candidate and the political committee or electioneering communications organization, if any. The report shall be filed on a form created by the Supervisor of Elections for such purpose.

(2) Each County or municipal elected officer in Miami-Dade County who is not also a candidate for another County or municipal office shall, on a monthly basis commencing one year prior to the date such officerís office is to be filled by election, file an electronic report with the Supervisor of Elections or other applicable filing officer regarding solicitation activities undertaken on behalf of any political committee or electioneering communications organization during the preceding month. The report shall identify each contribution solicited, directly or indirectly, by the officer, the name of the person or entity contributing the funds, the name of the political committee or electioneering communications organization on behalf of whom such funds were solicited, the amount of the contribution, and a description of the relationship between the officer and the political committee or electioneering communications organization, if any. The report shall be filed on a form created by the Supervisor of Elections for such purpose.

(3) Any County or municipal elected officer or candidate who fails to file a report as required by this section on the designated due date shall be subject to a fine of $50 per day for the first three (3) days and, thereafter, $500 per day for each day late not to exceed $5,000. Such fine shall not be an allowable campaign expense and shall be paid only from the personal funds of the candidate or officer. Any candidate or officer no change dispute the fine to the Miami-Dade County Commission on Ethics and Public Trust based upon, but not limited to, unusual circumstances surrounding the failure to file on the designated due date, and may request, and shall be entitled to, a hearing before the Commission on Ethics and Public Trust, which shall have the authority to waive the fine in whole or in part. Any such appeal or dispute shall be made within twenty (20) days after receipt of notice that payment is due or such appeal or dispute shall be waived.

Section 2. If any section, subsection, sentence, clause or provision of this ordinance is held invalid, the remainder of this ordinance shall not be affected by such invalidity.
Section 3. It is the intention of the Board of County Commissioners, and it is hereby ordained that the provisions of this ordinance, including any sunset provision, shall become and be made a part of the Code of Miami-Dade County, Florida. The sections of this ordinance may be renumbered or relettered to accomplish such intention, and the word "ordinance" may be changed to "section," "article," or other appropriate word.


Section 4. This ordinance shall become effective ten (10) days after the date of enactment unless vetoed by the Mayor, and if vetoed, shall become effective only upon an override by this Board.



Home  |   Agendas  |   Minutes  |   Legislative Search  |   Lobbyist Registration  |   Legislative Reports
2016 BCC Meeting Calendar  |   Miami-Dade County Code of Ordinances   |   ADA Notice  |  

Home  |  Using Our Site  |  About Phone Directory  |  Privacy  |  Disclaimer

E-mail your comments, questions and suggestions to Webmaster  

Web Site © 2016 Miami-Dade County.
All rights reserved.