The latest on California politics and government
September 7, 2012
The Fair Political Practices Commission is asking Gov. Jerry Brown to tighten disclosure rules for independent expenditure committees through a bill that cleared the Legislature with bipartisan support.
The measure, Assembly Bill 481, targets a segment of politics that has grown significantly the past decade – independent political campaigns that support or oppose candidates or ballot measures but are not coordinated by them.
FPPC Chairwoman Ann Ravel touts the bill “a major step to ensure accountability and public disclosure of independent expenditures.”
Corporations, unions and other groups can spend unlimited sums on independent expenditure campaigns. An FPPC report in June 2010 found that $127 million had been spent the past decade on such efforts.
AB 481, sponsored by the FPPC, takes aim at independent expenditure committees by requiring them to:
• Assume liability through their principal officers for election law violations, so that the FPPC can hold someone accountable even if the committee disbands before wrongdoing is discovered or investigated.
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