§1019-B. Reports of independent expenditures
1. Independent expenditures; definition. For the purposes of this section, an "independent expenditure":
A. Is any expenditure made by a person, party committee, political committee or political action committee, other than by contribution to a candidate or a candidate's authorized political committee, for any communication that expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate; and [2003, c. 448, §3 (NEW).]
B. Is presumed to be any expenditure made to design, produce or disseminate a communication that names or depicts a clearly identified candidate and is disseminated during the 21 days, including election day, before a primary election; or the 35 days, including election day, before a general or special election. [2013, c. 334, §15 (AMD).]
[ 2013, c. 334, §15 (AMD) .]
2. Rebutting presumption. A person presumed under this section to have made an independent expenditure may rebut the presumption by filing a signed written statement with the commission within 48 hours of making the expenditure stating that the cost was not incurred with the intent to influence the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate, supported by any additional evidence the person chooses to submit. The commission may gather any additional evidence it deems relevant and material and must determine by a preponderance of the evidence whether the cost was incurred with intent to influence the nomination, election or defeat of a candidate.
[ 2003, c. 448, §3 (NEW) .]
3. Report required; content; rules.
[ 2009, c. 524, §6 (RPR); MRSA T. 21-A, §1019-B, sub-§3 (RP) .]
4. Report required; content; rules. A person, party committee, political committee or political action committee that makes any independent expenditure in excess of $250 during any one candidate's election shall file a report with the commission. In the case of a municipal election, the report must be filed with the municipal clerk.
A. A report required by this subsection must be filed with the commission according to a reporting schedule that the commission shall establish by rule that takes into consideration existing campaign finance reporting requirements. Rules adopted pursuant to this paragraph are routine technical rules as defined in Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2-A. [2011, c. 558, §2 (AMD).]
B. A report required by this subsection must contain an itemized account of each expenditure in excess of $250 in any one candidate's election, the date and purpose of each expenditure and the name of each payee or creditor. The report must state whether the expenditure is in support of or in opposition to the candidate and must include, under penalty of perjury, as provided in Title 17-A, section 451, a statement under oath or affirmation whether the expenditure is made in cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, the candidate or an authorized committee or agent of the candidate. [2015, c. 350, §6 (AMD).]
C. A report required by this subsection must be on a form prescribed and prepared by the commission. A person filing this report may use additional pages if necessary, but the pages must be the same size as the pages of the form. The commission may adopt procedures requiring the electronic filing of an independent expenditure report, as long as the commission receives the statement made under oath or affirmation set out in paragraph B by the filing deadline and the commission adopts an exception for persons who lack access to the required technology or the technological ability to file reports electronically. The commission may adopt procedures allowing for the signed statement to be provisionally filed by facsimile or electronic mail, as long as the report is not considered complete without the filing of the original signed statement. [2013, c. 334, §16 (AMD).]
This subsection takes effect August 1, 2011.
[ 2015, c. 350, §6 (AMD) .]
5. Exclusions. An independent expenditure does not include:
A. An expenditure made by a person in cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, a candidate's political committee or their agents; [2011, c. 389, §21 (NEW).]
B. A telephone survey that meets generally accepted standards for polling research and that is not conducted for the purpose of changing the voting position of the call recipients or discouraging them from voting; [2011, c. 389, §21 (NEW).]
C. A telephone call naming a clearly identified candidate that identifies an individual's position on a candidate, ballot question or political party for the purpose of encouraging the individual to vote, as long as the call contains no advocacy for or against any candidate; and [2011, c. 389, §21 (NEW).]
D. A voter guide that consists primarily of candidates' responses to surveys and questionnaires and that contains no advocacy for or against any candidate. [2011, c. 389, §21 (NEW).]
[ 2011, c. 389, §21 (NEW) .]
2003, c. 448, §3 (NEW). 2007, c. 443, Pt. A, §20 (AMD). 2009, c. 366, §5 (AMD). 2009, c. 366, §12 (AFF). 2009, c. 524, §§6, 7 (AMD). 2011, c. 389, §§20, 21 (AMD). 2011, c. 389, §62 (AFF). 2011, c. 558, §2 (AMD). 2013, c. 334, §§15, 16 (AMD). 2015, c. 350, §6 (AMD).