Pacific Grove, CA Campaign Finance Regulations

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Pacific Grove, CA, US

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Type: Ordinance

Status: Adopted on 9/6/06

Vote: In Favor - 5 Opposed - 2

Source File: http://www.1hope.org/PG-CFR.RTF

Text:

AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF PACIFIC GROVE GOVERNING CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM AND CONFLICT OF INTEREST BY ADDING CHAPTER 2.30, ENTITLED "CAMPAIGN FINANCE REGULATIONS," TO THE PACIFIC GROVE MUNICIPAL CODE

WHEREAS, the City Council of the City of Pacific Grove desires that elected officials be held to a standard of conduct to which citizens can expect that the receipt of funds, campaign contributions and other monetary and non-monetary gifts do not influence the process of public decision-making or the disposition of public assets; and

WHEREAS, the City Council declares that there is a compelling interest to prevent potential and perceived corruptive influences of any campaign contributions on the decisions of public officials in the management of public assets and franchises, in the disposition of public funds, and in decisions that provide a material financial benefit to any individual or entity; and

WHEREAS, this Ordinance provides practical means and options to further promote campaign finance reform, provide for conflicts of interest, and enable compensation to the City of Pacific Grove for its costs of enforcement;

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF PACIFIC GROVE DOES ORDAIN AS FOLLOWS:

SECTION 1. Title 2, entitled "Administration and City Government," shall be expanded to include a new Chapter 2.30, entitled "Campaign Finance Regulations."

2.30 Campaign Finance Regulations

SECTION 2. The text set forth in this section shall be added as a new section 2.30.010 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Purpose," as follows:

Section 2.30.010 - Purpose
The Political Reform Act of 1974 (set forth at Government Code 81000 et seq, as amended), establishes the principle that public officials, whether elected or appointed, should perform their duties in an impartial manner, free from bias caused by their own financial interests or the financial interests of persons who have supported them. By Article 5 of the City Charter, the provisions contained in the Political Reform Act of 1974 fully apply to elected officials in the City of Pacific Grove. The purpose of this Chapter is to expand some provisions of the Political Reform Act of 1974 as they apply to the City of Pacific Grove, as well as add provisions that are not presently required. In no case is there any direct or implied intent that the provisions of this Chapter do anything to limit the applicability of the provisions of the Political Reform Act of 1974.

SECTION 3. The text set forth in this section shall be added as a new Section 2.30.020 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Definitions," as follows:

2.30.020 Definitions

(a) Unless otherwise defined in this Chapter, the definitions of the California Elections Code §§ 300 - 363, as amended, and of the Political Reform Act of 1974, set forth at Government Code §§ 81000 et seq., as amended, shall govern the interpretation of this Chapter.

(b) "Candidate Committee" means a candidate and/or his or her controlled committees.

(c) "Non-individual" shall mean a non-natural person.

(d) "Recuse" means to not participate in making or otherwise influencing a governmental decision. A recused official may still exercise his or her First Amendment right of free speech as an individual.

SECTION 4. The text set forth in this section shall be added as new Section 2.30.030 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Campaign Contribution Limits," as follows:

2.30.030 Campaign Contribution Limits

(a) Prohibition on Contributions from Non-Individuals:
A Candidate Committee shall not accept any contributions from non-individuals. For the purposes of campaign contributions, a deposit from a business or organization, regardless of form, shall be attributed to an individual if a filed disclosure form clearly and unambiguously attributes that contribution to a single named natural person.

(b) Individual Contributions Limit per Election:
A Candidate Committee shall not accept any contribution exceeding $500 from an individual in any single election campaign.

(c) Contribution Limit Adjustment for Inflation:
The contribution limit set by this section shall be increased in proportion to the cumulative change in the Consumer Price Index (CPI), for all urban consumers for the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose area, published by the United States Department of Labor using the CPI most recently available prior to April 1st of each year, provided however that an adjustment shall be based upon the cumulative change in the CPI since enactment of this measure, but each adjustment shall be rounded down to the nearest increment of $50.

SECTION 5. The text set forth in this section shall be added as new Section 2.30.040 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Disclosure," as follows:

2.30.040 Disclosure

(a) Disclosure prior to deposit. Until the name, address, occupation, and employer of the contributor is on file in the records of the Candidate Committee, the Candidate Committee shall not deposit a contribution of $100 or more.

(b) Additional filing requirement. In addition to the campaign statement filing requirements in state law each Candidate Committee shall file a current campaign finance statement with the City Clerk on the Friday before the date of the election to which this campaign applies.

SECTION 6. The text set forth in this section shall be added as new Section 2.30.050 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Limitation Upon Exchange of Financial Advantages," as follows:

2.30.050 Limitation Upon Exchange of Financial Advantages

(a) Contribution Before a Governmental Decision:
Each elected official shall recuse him or herself from a governmental decision which provides a Material Financial Effect to a contributor whose campaign contributions to the official's Candidate Committee relating to the official's current term of office accumulate to $250 or more however; recusal shall not be required if the Material Financial Effect is similarly provided to the general public or a large class of persons.

(b) Contributions After a Governmental Decision:
No person shall contribute and no person shall deposit a contribution to the official's Candidate Committee which accumulates to $250 or more following his or her participation in making or otherwise influencing a governmental decision which provides a Material Financial Effect to the contributor not similarly provided to the general public or a large class of persons.

(c) Contribution Adjustment for Inflation:

The limits set by this section shall be increased in proportion to the cumulative change in the Consumer Price Index (CPI), for all urban consumers for the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose area, published by the United States Department of Labor using the CPI most recently available prior to April 1st of each year, provided however that an adjustment shall be based upon the cumulative change in the CPI since enactment of this measure, but each adjustment shall be rounded down to the nearest increment of $50.

SECTION 7. The text set forth in this section shall be added as a new Section 2.30.080 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Complaints," as follows:

2.30.080 Complaints
Any member of the public may make a complaint under this section and file it with the City Clerk of Pacific Grove. The City Attorney shall request of the involved parties a statement of facts and seek to ascertain whether the complaint is addressed by this Chapter. Such determination shall be made within ten (10) days of filing said complaint. If, in the opinion of the City Attorney, the complaint can be addressed by this Chapter, the City Attorney will take the steps necessary to enforce this Chapter.

SECTION 8. The text set forth in this section shall be added as a new Section 2.30.090 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Violations - Enforcement," as follows:

2.30.090 Violations - Enforcement
The City Attorney is authorized to enforce any provisions of this Chapter as set forth in Title I, Chapter 1.16, "Violations," of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code.

SECTION 9. The text set forth in this section shall be added as a new Section 2.30.100 of the Pacific Grove Municipal Code, entitled "Violations - Private Enforcement," as follows:

2.30.100 Violations - Private Enforcement
In addition to other enforcement provisions set forth in this Chapter, an individual shall have the right to bring a civil action to enforce these provisions. The power of private enforcement shall be effective only after Notice of Intent to enforce has been provided to the City Attorney but no City enforcement has commenced within thirty (30) days.

SECTION 10. If any provision, section, paragraph, sentence, clause or phrase of this ordinance, or any part thereof, or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is for any reason held to be invalid or unconstitutional by a court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this Ordinance, or any part thereof, or its application to other persons or circumstances. The City Council hereby declares that it would have passed and adopted each provision, section, paragraph, subparagraph, sentence, clause or phrase thereof, irrespective of the fact that any one or more sections, paragraphs, subparagraphs, sentences, clauses or phrases, or the application thereof to any person or circumstance, be declared invalid or unconstitutional.

SECTION 11. This ordinance shall become effective on the thirtieth day following passage and adoption hereof.

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