senate Bill S3273

Relates to increasing fines and penalties for certain violations; requires refund of certain illegal contributions

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 31 / Jan / 2013
    • REFERRED TO ELECTIONS
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • REFERRED TO ELECTIONS

Summary

Relates to increasing fines and penalties for certain violations; requires refund of certain illegal contributions.

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Bill Details

Versions:
S3273
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Current Committee:
Senate Elections
Law Section:
Election Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §14-126, El L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Cycles:
2011-2012: S890A
2009-2010: S4061B

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S3273

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the election law, in relation to
increasing penalties for certain violations

PURPOSE: This legislation would increase fines and penalties for
certain violations; requires refund of certain illegal contributions.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Section 1 of the bill amends Election Law § 14-126 to increase civil
penalties for violations of New York's campaign finance laws. The bill
imposes civil penalties of up to $10,000 for expending campaign funds
for personal use; and political committee violations of the campaign
finance law.

The bill also creates a penalty for those who establish a partnership or
limited liability company to evade the contribution limits. The penalty
would be two times the amount contributed plus a fine of 10,000 in a
civil proceeding brought by the board of elections.

JUSTIFICATION: Current penalties for violations of campaign finance
laws in New York are either nonexistent or. extremely weak. The fines
under current law are far too low, considering the level of contrib-
utions candidates receive. This legislation is an important component of
a series of meaningful campaign finance reforms for New Yorkers.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2010: S:4061B, Similar to A.7488-A 2011: S.890

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: There may be a small increase in revenues due to
increased fine levels.

EFFECTIVE DATE:; This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it
shall have become law.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  3273

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 31, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. KRUEGER -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Elections

AN ACT to amend the election law, in relation  to  increasing  penalties
  for certain violations

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1.  Section 14-126 of the election law, as amended by  section
3  of  part  E of chapter 399 of the laws of 2011, is amended to read as
follows:
  S 14-126. Violations; penalties. 1. Any person who  fails  to  file  a
statement  required  to  be  filed by this article shall be subject to a
civil penalty, not in excess of one thousand dollars, to be  recoverable
in a special proceeding or civil action to be brought by the state board
of elections [or other board of elections] PURSUANT TO SECTION 16-114 OF
THIS  CHAPTER.  Any  person  who,  three  or  more  times within a given
election cycle for such term of office, fails to  file  a  statement  or
statements  required  to be filed by this article, shall be subject to a
civil penalty, not in excess of ten thousand dollars, to be  recoverable
as provided for in this subdivision.
  2.  Any person who, acting as or on behalf of a candidate or political
committee, under circumstances evincing an intent to violate  such  law,
unlawfully accepts a contribution in excess of a contribution limitation
established  in  this  article,  shall be required to refund such excess
amount and shall be subject to a  civil  penalty  equal  to  the  excess
amount plus a fine of up to ten thousand dollars, to be recoverable in a
special  proceeding  or civil action to be brought by the state board of
elections.
  3. ANY PERSON WHO, ACTING AS OR ON BEHALF OF A CANDIDATE OR  POLITICAL
COMMITTEE,  UNDER  CIRCUMSTANCES EVINCING AN INTENT TO VIOLATE SUCH LAW,
UNLAWFULLY (A) EXPENDS CAMPAIGN FUNDS FOR A PERSONAL USE IN VIOLATION OF
THIS ARTICLE, OR (B) CONDUCTS ACTIVITIES  PROHIBITED  BY  THIS  ARTICLE,

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01045-01-3

S. 3273                             2

SHALL  BE  SUBJECT  TO  A  CIVIL  PENALTY, NOT IN EXCESS OF TEN THOUSAND
DOLLARS, TO BE RECOVERABLE IN A SPECIAL PROCEEDING OR CIVIL ACTION TO BE
BROUGHT BY THE STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS.
  4.  Any  person  who knowingly and willfully fails to file a statement
required to be filed by this article within  ten  days  after  the  date
provided for filing such statement or any person who knowingly and will-
fully  violates any other provision of this article shall be guilty of a
misdemeanor.
  [4.] 5. Any person who knowingly and willfully contributes, accepts or
aids or participates in the acceptance of a contribution  in  an  amount
exceeding an applicable maximum specified in this article shall be guil-
ty of a misdemeanor.
  [5.] 6. Any person who shall, acting on behalf of a candidate or poli-
tical committee, knowingly and willfully solicit, organize or coordinate
the formation of activities of one or more unauthorized committees, make
expenditures  in connection with the nomination for election or election
of any candidate, or solicit any person to make any  such  expenditures,
for the purpose of evading the contribution limitations of this article,
shall be guilty of a class E felony.
  7.  ANY  PERSON WHO, UNDER CIRCUMSTANCES EVINCING AN INTENT TO VIOLATE
THIS ARTICLE, ESTABLISHES A PARTNERSHIP FOR THE SOLE PURPOSE OF  EVADING
THE CONTRIBUTION LIMITS THAT WOULD OTHERWISE APPLY TO THAT INDIVIDUAL IN
VIOLATION  OF SUBDIVISION TWO OF SECTION 14-120 OF THIS ARTICLE SHALL BE
SUBJECT TO A CIVIL PENALTY EQUAL TO TWO TIMES THE AMOUNT CONTRIBUTED  BY
THE  PARTNERSHIP  IN EXCESS OF THE CONTRIBUTION LIMITS THAT WOULD OTHER-
WISE APPLY TO THAT INDIVIDUAL PLUS A FINE OF UP TO TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS,
TO BE RECOVERABLE IN A SPECIAL PROCEEDING OR CIVIL ACTION TO BE  BROUGHT
BY THE STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS.
  8.  ANY  PERSON WHO, UNDER CIRCUMSTANCES EVINCING AN INTENT TO VIOLATE
THIS ARTICLE, ESTABLISHES A  LIMITED  LIABILITY  COMPANY  FOR  THE  SOLE
PURPOSE OF EVADING THE CONTRIBUTION LIMITS THAT WOULD OTHERWISE APPLY TO
THAT  INDIVIDUAL IN VIOLATION OF SECTION 14-120 OF THIS ARTICLE SHALL BE
SUBJECT TO A CIVIL PENALTY EQUAL TO TWO TIMES THE AMOUNT CONTRIBUTED  BY
THE  LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY IN EXCESS OF THE CONTRIBUTION LIMITS THAT
WOULD OTHERWISE APPLY TO THAT INDIVIDUAL PLUS A FINE OF UP TO TEN  THOU-
SAND  DOLLARS, TO BE RECOVERABLE IN A SPECIAL PROCEEDING OR CIVIL ACTION
TO BE BROUGHT BY THE STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS.
  S 2. This act shall take effect on the sixtieth  day  after  it  shall
have become a law.

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