Commission meetings and hearings
No open meetings or executive sessions were scheduled this week.
Draft Advisory Opinion
Advisory Opinion Request 2021-07 (PAC Management Services LLC) On July 8, the Commission made public a draft of Advisory Opinion 2021-07. The requestor asks several questions about its proposal to allow individuals to solicit and make contributions to political committees via its online platform. The draft is available for comment until 12:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) on July 14, 2021.
The Commission made public one closed case, as follows. For more information, see the case documents in the Enforcement Query System.
COMPLAINANTS: FEC-Initiated; and Friends of Dave Joyce and Natalie Baur, in her official capacity as treasurer (the Committee)
RESPONDENT: Scott Coleman
SUBJECT: The Commission, in the normal course of exercising its supervisory responsibilities and on the basis of a complaint, initiated proceedings to determine whether there was reason to believe that Coleman, the Committee’s former treasurer, knowingly and willfully violated the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended (the Act), by (1) converting campaign funds to personal use by embezzling $174,952.40, (2) failing to keep an account of receipts and disbursements made from the Committee’s funds, and (3) failing to file accurate reports with the Commission.
DISPOSITION: The Commission entered into a conciliation agreement providing for Coleman to pay a civil penalty of $20,528 and not to engage in work involving finances or filing disclosure reports in connection with any federal committee for 10 years.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
The Commission made public three closed cases, as follows. For more information, see the case documents in the Enforcement Query System.
RESPONDENT: Friends of Dave Joyce and Natalie Baur, in her official capacity as treasurer (the Committee)
SUBJECT: The Committee filed a sua sponte submission to disclose that the former treasurer of the Committee embezzled approximately $174,952.40 from the Committee between January 1, 2015 and November 30, 2018, which caused the Committee to file inaccurate disclosure reports with the Commission.
DISPOSITION: The Committee agreed to certify that it will follow internal control procedures consistently as recommended by the Commission for a period of at least two years.
RESPONDENT: Leon County Democratic Executive Committee and Kevin Richard Carpenter, in his official capacity as treasurer (the Committee)
SUBJECT: The Committee filed a sua sponte submission stating that as of August 31, 2020, the Committee had received more than $5,000 in contributions, and therefore met the registration and reporting requirements that apply to federal political committees, but the Committee did not file a Statement of Organization to register as a local political party organization with the Commission until January 2021. Further, in September 2020, the Committee made approximately $32,648 in independent expenditures for mailings in support of federal candidates which were required to be disclosed on 48-Hour Reports.
DISPOSITION: The Committee agreed to 1) participate in an FEC training program, 2) designate a compliance specialist, and 3) pay a civil penalty of $800.
RESPONDENT: Denali Leadership PAC and Kimberly VanWyhe, in her official capacity as treasurer (the Committee)
SUBJECT: In the normal course of exercising its supervisory responsibilities, the Commission initiated proceedings to determine whether there was reason to believe that the Committee failed to disclose $100,702 in disbursements on its original 2020 October Monthly Report.
DISPOSITION: The Committee agreed to 1) develop and certify implementation of a compliance operations manual which includes internal controls, 2) certify that a representative participated in an FEC training, and 3) pay a civil penalty of $5,150.
Regulations and agency procedures
REG 2021-01 Candidate Salaries. On July 6, the Commission made public comments that were received in response to a Rulemaking Petition and Notice of Availability on Candidate Salaries that was published in the Federal Register on May 3. The petition asks the Commission to amend its existing regulations regarding candidate salaries and permissible uses of campaign funds to standardize and extend the period during which a candidate can draw salary from campaign funds, establish a minimum salary for candidates from campaign funds, and designate the payment of certain healthcare costs as permissible uses of campaign funds.
On July 7, the Commission hosted a Virtual Conference preview workshop.
Upcoming educational programs
July 14, 2021: The Commission will host a FECFile webinar for PACs and party committees.
August 17-18, 2021: The Commission will host a Virtual Conference online via Zoom.
For more information on upcoming training opportunities, see the Commission’s Trainings page.
Upcoming Commission meetings
July 13, 2021: The Commission is scheduled to meet in executive session.
July 15, 2021: The Commission is scheduled to hold an open meeting.
July 27, 2021: The Commission is scheduled to meet in executive session.
July 29, 2021: The Commission is scheduled to hold an open meeting.
Upcoming reporting due dates
July 15: July Quarterly Reports are due. For more information, see the 2021 Quarterly Reporting schedule.
July 20: July Monthly Reports are due. For more information, see the 2021 Monthly Reporting schedule.
July 31: Mid-Year Reports are due. For more information, see the 2021 Semi-annual Reporting schedule.
Status of agency operations
See the Commission’s statement on the status of agency operations, updated on April 15, 2021. At this stage, most agency staff remain in telework status and the Commission’s office remains closed to visitors. See also the agency’s Workplace Safety Plan, dated May 6, 2021.
Additional research materials
2020 Presidential General Election Results and Federal Elections 2018: Election Results for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are available. The data was compiled from the official vote totals published by state election offices.
Additional research materials about the agency, campaign finance information, and election results are available through the Library section of the Commission website.
The Combined Federal State Disclosure and Election Directory is available. This publication identifies the federal and state agencies responsible for the disclosure of campaign finances, lobbying, personal finances, public financing, candidates on the ballot, election results, spending on state initiatives and other financial filings.
The FEC Record is available as a continuously updated online news source.
Other election-related resources
Videos on protecting U.S. elections. The FBI’s Protected Voices initiative provides videos designed to help political campaigns protect themselves from foreign influence. The 2019 videos offer guidance on ransomware, business email compromise, supply chain, social media literacy, and foreign influence operations. Other videos, released in 2018, include cyber hygiene topics such as social engineering, patching, router hardening, and app and browser safety.
Join the FEC on Twitter and YouTube
Follow @FEC on Twitter to receive the latest information on agency updates, news releases, and weekly activity. Subscribe to our YouTube channel, FECTube: FECConnect on Demand, to watch instructional videos that have been designed to help candidates and committees comply with federal campaign finance laws. Note that the FEC is not currently available through other social media platforms currently. The use of the agency’s logo, name, and likeness on other media has not been authorized by the FEC.