News Releases, Media Advisories
|For Immediate Release
March 10, 2003
|REVISIONS TO ADMINISTRATIVE FINES PROGRAM APPROVED|
|WASHINGTON The Federal Election Commission on March 6 approved
revisions to its Administrative Fines Program in which the Commission assesses a civil
penalty according to a published schedule of fines when it determines that a political
committee has failed to file a financial report on time. The program is intended to save
Commission resources while encouraging campaigns and committees to file reports on time.
The new rules will become effective 30 days from the date they are transmitted to Congress
and published in the Federal Register.
The two major revisions to the rules will reduce the civil money penalties for political committees with less than $50,000 in financial activity in the reporting period for which a report is filed late or not filed, and remove certain "non-federal" funds that some committees must disclose from the calculation used to assess the fine.
The revised rules create two additional levels of activity categories in the fine schedules to make finer distinctions in civil penalties assessed against committees with less than $50,000 in financial activity in the relevant reporting period that either file late or not at all. Additionally, the rules clarify how late and non-filers will be notified of Commission actions under the program; and provide examples of the factors that will not be considered "extraordinary circumstances" when Commission reason-to-believe findings are challenged.
The Administrative Fines Program continues to influence the timely filing of reports by committees. Since the inception, over 500 cases of late and non-filers have been placed on the public record, with civil money penalties collected totaling over $700,000.
A FEC analysis of reports covering the last three election cycles shows significant improvement in on-time filing during 2001-2002.
(More detailed filing statistics attached below)
This improvement came about while the Administrative Fines Program and mandatory electronic filing for large committees (other than Senate filers) were being implemented. By providing both financial incentives for filing on time and an efficient method of doing so, the Commission has measurably improved compliance with financial reporting requirements.
2001 Monthly Reports (July Monthly through December Monthly)
2002 Monthly Reports (February Monthly through October Monthly)
2002 Quarterly Reports(April Quarterly through 30 Day Post-General)
2002 QUARTERLY REPORTS: ELECTRONIC AND PAPER FILINGS (Does not include Mid-Year Report)
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