HOUSE BILL No. 4341

 

 

March 12, 2019, Introduced by Reps. Lower and Albert and referred to the Committee on Elections and Ethics.

 

      A bill to amend 1976 PA 388, entitled

 

"Michigan campaign finance act,"

 

by amending section 55 (MCL 169.255), as amended by 2017 PA 119.

 

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN ENACT:

 

 1        Sec. 55. (1) A connected organization may make an expenditure

 

 2  for the establishment or administration of, and solicitation,

 

 3  collection, or transfer of contributions to, a separate segregated

 

 4  fund to be used for political purposes. A separate segregated fund

 

 5  established by a connected organization under this section shall be

 

 6  organized as a political committee or an independent committee,

 

 7  and, in addition to any other disbursements not restricted or

 

 8  prohibited by law, shall only make contributions to, and

 

 9  expenditures on behalf of, candidate committees, ballot question


 1  committees, political party committees, political committees,

 

 2  independent expenditure committees, independent committees, and

 

 3  other separate segregated funds.

 

 4        (2) Contributions for a separate segregated fund established

 

 5  by a corporation, organized on a for profit basis, or a joint stock

 

 6  company under this section may be solicited from any of the

 

 7  following persons or their spouses:

 

 8        (a) Stockholders of the corporation or company.

 

 9        (b) Officers and directors of the corporation or company.

 

10        (c) Employees of the corporation or company who have policy

 

11  making, managerial, professional, supervisory, or administrative

 

12  nonclerical responsibilities.

 

13        (3) Contributions for a separate segregated fund established

 

14  under this section by a corporation organized on a nonprofit basis

 

15  may be solicited from any of the following persons or their

 

16  spouses:

 

17        (a) Members of the corporation who are individuals.

 

18        (b) Stockholders or members of members of the corporation.

 

19        (c) Officers or directors of members of the corporation.

 

20        (d) Employees of the members of the corporation who have

 

21  policy making, managerial, professional, supervisory, or

 

22  administrative nonclerical responsibilities.

 

23        (e) Employees of the corporation who have policy making,

 

24  managerial, professional, supervisory, or administrative

 

25  nonclerical responsibilities.

 

26        (4) Contributions for a separate segregated fund established

 

27  under this section by a labor organization may be solicited from


 1  any of the following persons or their spouses:

 

 2        (a) Members of the labor organization who are individuals.

 

 3        (b) Officers or directors of the labor organization.

 

 4        (c) Employees of the labor organization who have policy

 

 5  making, managerial, professional, supervisory, or administrative

 

 6  nonclerical responsibilities.

 

 7        (5) Contributions for a separate segregated fund established

 

 8  under this section by a domestic dependent sovereign may be

 

 9  solicited from an individual who is a member of any domestic

 

10  dependent sovereign.

 

11        (6) Contributions must not be obtained for a separate

 

12  segregated fund established under this section by use of coercion

 

13  or physical force, by making a contribution a condition of

 

14  employment or membership, or by using or threatening to use job

 

15  discrimination or financial reprisals. A connected organization

 

16  shall not solicit or obtain contributions for a separate segregated

 

17  fund established under this section from an individual described in

 

18  subsection (2), (3), (4), or (5) on an automatic or passive basis

 

19  including but not limited to a payroll deduction plan or reverse

 

20  checkoff method. A connected organization may solicit or obtain

 

21  contributions for a separate segregated fund established under this

 

22  section from an individual described in subsection (2), (3), (4),

 

23  or (5) on an automatic basis, including but not limited to a

 

24  payroll deduction plan, only if the individual who is contributing

 

25  to the fund affirmatively consents to the contribution.

 

26        (7) A contribution by an individual to a separate segregated

 

27  fund that is aggregated with a dues or other payment to the


 1  connected organization may be collected by or made payable first to

 

 2  the connected organization for subsequent transfer to the separate

 

 3  segregated fund if all of the following occur:

 

 4        (a) The individual making the contribution does either of the

 

 5  following:

 

 6        (i) Specifically indicates in a record or electronic record

 

 7  that the amount collected, or a specified portion of the total

 

 8  amount if remitted as part of a dues or other payment to the

 

 9  connected organization, is a contribution to the separate

 

10  segregated fund.

 

11        (ii) Fails to return a record or electronic record described

 

12  in subparagraph (i), but remits payment to the connected

 

13  organization in response to a specifically requested amount that

 

14  includes a solicited contribution, the solicitation for a

 

15  contribution was clearly distinguishable from any dues or other

 

16  fees requested as part of the total, and the connected organization

 

17  maintains a record or electronic record of the solicitation that

 

18  includes the amount of the solicited contribution and the amount of

 

19  any dues or other fees charged in conjunction with the solicitation

 

20  for each contributor.

 

21        (b) The connected organization transfers the entire specified

 

22  amount of any designated contribution, individually or aggregated

 

23  with other contributions, to the separate segregated fund

 

24  electronically or by written instrument. Any transfer of designated

 

25  contributions must be accompanied by or logically associated with a

 

26  record or electronic record setting forth all information required

 

27  under section 26 for each individual contributor whose contribution


 1  is transferred.

 

 2        (c) The connected organization accounts for any contributions

 

 3  under this subsection in a manner that documents all of the

 

 4  following:

 

 5        (i) The identity of the individual contributor.

 

 6        (ii) The date, amount, and method of receipt for each

 

 7  individual contribution.

 

 8        (iii) The date, amount, and method of all transfers to the

 

 9  separate segregated fund.

 

10        (d) The connected organization and the separate segregated

 

11  fund adopt a written policy governing the handling, accounting, and

 

12  transfer of any contribution under this subsection.

 

13        (e) In connection with an investigation or hearing under

 

14  section 15 regarding any contributions under this subsection, the

 

15  connected organization voluntarily agrees to make available to the

 

16  secretary of state any records described in subdivisions (a) to (d)

 

17  and provides those records at the request of the secretary of

 

18  state.

 

19        (8) Expenditures by a separate segregated fund created by a

 

20  connected organization for printed matter having reference to an

 

21  election, a candidate, or a ballot question and mailed to members

 

22  of that connected organization must include the following

 

23  disclaimer:

 

 

24

"Paid for by ...................... with nonregulated funds."

25

        (name of separate segregated fund)

 

 

26        (9) (8) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (10), (11),

 


 1  a person who knowingly violates this section is guilty of a felony

 

 2  punishable, if the person is an individual, by a fine of not more

 

 3  than $5,000.00 or imprisonment for not more than 3 years, or both,

 

 4  or, if the person is not an individual, by a fine of not more than

 

 5  $10,000.00.

 

 6        (10) (9) If a connected organization that obtains

 

 7  contributions for a separate segregated fund from individuals

 

 8  described in subsection (2), (3), (4), or (5) pays to 1 or more of

 

 9  those individuals a bonus or other remuneration for the purpose of

 

10  reimbursing those contributions, then that connected organization

 

11  is subject to a civil fine of not more than 2 times the total

 

12  contributions obtained from all individuals for the separate

 

13  segregated fund during that calendar year.

 

14        (11) (10) If a violation of this section results solely from

 

15  the failure of a connected organization to transfer 1 or more

 

16  contributions, that connected organization is not guilty of a

 

17  felony as described in subsection (8), (9), but shall notify the

 

18  contributor of the failure to transfer the contribution and refund

 

19  the full amount of the contribution to the contributor if

 

20  requested. The penalties described in subsection (8) (9) apply to

 

21  any other violation of this section, including use or diversion of

 

22  any contributions by a connected organization before those

 

23  contributions are transferred to the separate segregated fund under

 

24  subsection (7).

 

25        (12) (11) As used in this section:

 

26        (a) "Connected organization" means either of the following:

 

27        (i) A corporation organized on a for-profit or nonprofit


 1  basis, a joint stock company, a domestic dependent sovereign, or a

 

 2  labor organization formed under the laws of this or another state

 

 3  or foreign country.

 

 4        (ii) A member of any entity under subparagraph (i) that is not

 

 5  an individual and that does not maintain its own separate

 

 6  segregated fund, unless its separate segregated fund and the

 

 7  separate segregated fund of the entity of which it is a member are

 

 8  treated as a single independent committee as provided in section

 

 9  52(10).

 

10        (b) "Record" and "electronic record" mean those terms as

 

11  defined in section 2 of the uniform electronic transactions act,

 

12  2000 PA 305, MCL 450.832.

 

13        (c) "Written instrument" means a money order, or a check,

 

14  cashier's check, or other negotiable instrument, as those terms are

 

15  defined in section 3104 of the uniform commercial code, 1962 PA

 

16  174, MCL 440.3104, in the name of the connected organization and

 

17  payable to the separate segregated fund.