San Bernardino County Candidates
- San Bernardino County Campaign Finance Ordinance
- San Bernardino County Candidate Checklist
- San Bernardino County Incumbent Candidate FAQs
- San Bernardino County Candidate and Treasurer Power Point Presentation
- San Bernardino County Guide for What to Keep for FPPC Audit
- San Bernardino County Recordkeeping Requirements
- San Bernardino County Enforcement Actions from Last Election Cycle
Candidate and Officeholder Campaign Contribution Limits
Candidates seeking any San Bernardino County elective office are subject to contribution limits from a single source per election.
|Effective Date||All Contributors|
|January 1, 2019 - December 31, 2020||$4,700|
|January 1, 2017 - December 31, 2018||$4,400|
|January 1, 2015 - December 31, 2016||$4,200|
|January 1, 2013 - December 31, 2014||$4,100|
If a special election is called, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a filing schedule.
- Contributions of $100 or more made by a money order, cashier's check, or travelers cheque are prohibited.
- For each office you seek, including re-election to the same office, you must establish a new committee and campaign bank account.
- Any candidate or controlled committee that raises or spends at least $10,000 in any election, to support or oppose a candidate, must file all campaign statements electronically.
- Candidates and committees must file 24 hours reports electronically.
Section 12.4310 of the San Bernardino Ordinance permits a candidate for an elected San Bernardino office to “transfer campaign funds from one controlled committee to a controlled committee for County office of the same candidate.” Paralleling Section 85306 of the Political Reform Act, “contributions transferred shall be attributed to specific contributors using a ‘last in, first out’ or ‘first in, first out’ accounting method, and these attributed contributions when aggregated with all other contributions from the same contributor may not exceed the limits” set forth in the ordinance.
In interpreting the San Bernardino Ordinance, Section 12.4303(b) states, “Unless a word or term is specifically defined in this ordinance or the contrary is stated or clearly appears from the context, words and terms shall have the same meaning as when they are used in Political Reform Act, as amended and codified, and in the related regulations of the Fair Political Practices Commission.”
Accordingly, any transfer of campaign funds from one controlled committee to a controlled committee for San Bernardino office of the same candidate shall be made pursuant to the Commission’s attribution rules found in Commission Regulation 18536.
Under the Act, a “controlled committee” is one that is controlled by a “candidate,” which is defined to exclude federal candidates. (Sections 82007 and 82016.) Because a federal candidate committee is not considered a “controlled committee,” the Act does not specifically address the question of transfers from a federal committee to a state committee of the same candidate. However, as analyzed in the Morrell Advice Letter, FPPC No. A-03-089, we have previously determined that transfers from a federal campaign committee to a state committee of the same candidate shall also be made pursuant to the attribution rules found in Section 85306 and Commission Regulation 18536.
Because the San Bernardino Ordinance expressly states that words and terms shall be given the same meaning as when they are used in Act, any transfer of campaign funds from a federal candidate committee to a controlled committee for San Bernardino office of the same candidate shall be made pursuant to the Commission’s attribution rules found in Commission Regulation 18536.
Section 12.4305(b) of the San Bernardino Ordinance allows a contribution “after the date of the election only to the extent that the contribution does not exceed net debts outstanding from the election, and the contribution does not otherwise exceed the applicable contribution limit for the election. ”When an election is determined by an appointment in lieu of election, the determinative question is whether the date of the election is the date on which it is determined that the lone candidate will be appointed by operation of law or the date on which the election would have been held had it not been for the appointment.
In a related provision, Section 12.4305(c) permits a candidate to raise contributions for a general election during a primary election if the contributions are set aside for the general election and refunded to contributors, less any expenses associated with the raising and administration of the funds, upon the candidate’s election to office in a primary election, defeat in the primary election, or withdrawal from the general election.
It is telling that Section 12.4305(c) triggers a refund of general election contributions upon the candidate’s actual election to office as opposed to the date of the scheduled primary election. For purposes of both Section 12.4305(b) and (c), there is simply no functional distinction between the appointment to office and the candidate’s actual election to office.
Accordingly, the San Bernardino Ordinance permits contributions after the date on which it is determined that the candidate will be appointed to office by operation of law only to the extent permitted under Section 12.4305(b) for net debt outstanding. Any contribution, in excess of net debt outstanding, received after this date must be deposited in a separate campaign account for election to a future term of the same or different office. (See Section 12.4305(d).) Moreover, general contributions received prior to this date must be refunded as required by Section 12.4305(c).