Like many federal agencies, the FEC will be unable to provide any services during the government shutdown. Most agency staff will not report to work, and the agency’s offices will be closed to the public. While the FEC’s website will remain online, most of its content will not be updated. Although the interactive, web-based programs and electronic filing systems (including technical support contractors) will be available during the shutdown, FEC staff will not be able to provide assistance to the user community. During the shutdown all summary filing data, including data from newly e-filed reports, will be available. Images of both previously filed and newly e-filed reports will also be available. However, detailed transactional data from newly filed reports will not be available until staff returns from furlough. Reports filed on paper will not be processed or made available on the website until staff return from furlough.
You will be unable to contact the FEC during the government shutdown. Staff will not be available to answer phone calls, respond to email or receive postal mail until the agency reopens. If you have pending or new business before the FEC, or are waiting for a response from FEC staff, you should not expect to hear from us until we reopen. We look forward to resuming operations as soon as possible.
The Commission will not be able to accept any paper reports during the shutdown. Electronic filers with reports due during the shutdown may file, but FEC staff will not be available to resolve any technological problems that could arise and prevent timely filing. While the FEC does not have statutory authority to extend filing deadlines, it may choose not to pursue administrative fines against filers prevented from filing by reasonably unforeseen circumstances beyond their control. See 11 CFR 111.35. Accordingly, the Commission will not pursue administrative fines against filers with reports due during the shutdown who fail to file on a timely basis, so long as they file within 24 hours after the Commission resumes operations. The FEC will reopen on the first regular business day after its funding legislation is enacted. Please check the website for an announcement on when the FEC will reopen.
Comments on REG 2018-03 and REG 2016-01
During the shutdown, the Commission will continue to accept comments via the Commission’s website and in paper form on two pending rulemaking notices of availability involving the definition of contribution and advisory opinion comment procedures. Like other online systems, the rulemaking comment portal will be available during the shutdown, but the FEC Help Desk and other staff will not be able to provide assistance to the user community. Once normal operations resume, Commission staff will respond promptly to any messages relaying concerns related to the rulemaking notices and the Commission will consider whether to extend the deadline for submitting comments.
Other documents or materials due during the shutdown (for example, responses to Requests for Additional Information, responses to complaints, production in response to Commission subpoenas or interrogatories, etc.) will be considered timely if the Commission receives them within 24 hours after the agency resumes operations. In cases where the time for the Commission to take an action (for example, notification of a complaint, rendering an advisory opinion, etc.) is triggered by the receipt of a document, that time will begin to run when the document is docketed as received after we resume operations. If the triggering document was filed before the shutdown—such that the Commission's time to act partially or wholly lapses during the shutdown—please contact the appropriate FEC staff after we resume operations to discuss whether the deadline may be extended.