Guide To Political Contributions in New Jersey 2003 Update

Title:
Guide To Political Contributions in New Jersey 2003 Update
Publication:
Riker Danzig Governmental Affairs Group
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The New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission's ("ELEC") most recent amendments concerning the campaign contribution limits and thresholds under the New Jersey Campaign Contributions and Expenditures Reporting Act, N.J.S.A. 19:44A-1 et seq., (the "Act") took effect on January 8, 2002 and were adopted by ELEC through regulation on July 15, 2002. 34 N.J.R. 2466(c).

Corporate political contributions are specifically authorized subject to certain limits in New Jersey under the Act. Further, ELEC regulations expressly provide for corporate contributions to political committees ("PCs"), continuing political committees ("CPCs") or political action committees (more commonly known as "PACs") and place certain limitations on the amount a corporation may contribute. However, certain regulated entities, e.g., utilities, telephone companies, banks, insurance companies and casinos and their affiliates are statutorily prohibited from making contributions under the New Jersey statutes and advisory opinions issued by the State Attorney General. The building industry, chemical and pharmaceutical industries, legal, medical and dental professions, and real estate business are examples of entities that are not "regulated" and are outside the scope of the political contributions ban. Regulated entities are also not permitted to use their funds to establish, administer or to solicit contributions for PCs or CPCs, unless immediately reimbursed by the PC or CPC. The ELEC regulations prevent entities which are commonly-owned or controlled from making contributions which, in the aggregate, exceed the contribution limits.

 

Important 2003 Dates to Remember for State Elections
April 7 Candidate nominating petition filing deadline for Primary Election Candidates
May 5 Last day to register to vote in the June Primary Election
May 13 Non-partisan Municipal Elections (some municipalities)
May 27 Last day to apply for an absentee ballot application by mail (for the Primary Election)
June 2 Last day to apply for an absentee ballot application in person (for the Primary Election)
June 3 Candidate nominating petition filing deadline for Independent Candidates
June 3 Primary Election Day - polls open 6 AM until 8 PM
October 6 Last day to register to vote in the November General Election
October 28 Last day to apply for an absentee ballot application by mail (for the General Election)
November 3 Last day to apply for an absentee ballot application in person (for the General Election)
November 4 General Election Day - polls open 6 AM until 8 PM

 

State Contribution Limits

 
Contributing Entities Candidate Committee Political Committee Continuing Political Committee Legislative Leadership Committee State Political Party Committee County Political Party Committee Municipal Political Party Committee
Individual to: $2,200 per election $7,200 per election $7,200 per year $25,000 per year $25,000 per year $37,000 per year $7,200 per year
Corporation or Union to: $2,200 per election $7,200 per election $7,200 per year $25,000 per year $25,000 per year $37,000 per year $7,200 per year
Association or Group to: $2,200 per election $7,200 per election $7,200 per year $25,000 per year $25,000 per year $37,000 per year $7,200 per year
Candidate Committee to: $7,200 per election $7,200 per election $7,200 per year $25,000 per year $25,000 per year $37,000 per year $7,200 per year
Political Committee to: $7,200 per election $7,200 per election $7,200 per year $25,000 per year $25,000 per year $37,000 per year $7,200 per year
Continuing Political Committee to: $7,200 per election $7,200 per election $7,200 per year $25,000 per year $25,000 per year $37,000 per year $7,200 per year
Legislative Leadership Committee to: - - - NO LIMITS - - -
State Political Party Committee to: - - - NO LIMITS - - -
County Political Party Committee to: - - - NO LIMITS, except those set forth in N.J.A.C. 19:25-11.7. - - -
Municipal Political Party Committee to: - - - NO LIMITS - - -
National Political Party Committee to: $7,200 per election $7,200 per election $7,200 per year $25,000 per year $72,000 per year $37,000 per year $7,200 per year

Source: New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety, Division of Elections

 

 

Federal Contribution Limits

 
Contributing Entities Federal Candidate or Candidate Committee Political Action Committee (SSF) State or Local Party Committee supporting federal candidates National Party Committee***
Individual* $2,000 per election $5,000 per election $10,000 per year $25,000 per year  
Corporation or Union Prohibited Prohibited Prohibited Prohibited
Political Action Committee $5,000 per election $5,000 per calendar year $5,000 per year $15,000 per year
National Party Committee** $5,000 per election $5,000 per year Unlimited  

Source: Federal Election Commission. These limits reflect those made by the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 signed by President Bush on March 27, 2002 which will take effect on November 6, 2002.
* Please see note with respect to the bi-annual aggregate contribution limit for individuals
** Please see note with respect to a national party committee's ability to contribute to Senate candidates in the year of their election
*** A Party's national committee, Senate campaign committee, and House campaign committee are each considered national party committees, and each have separate limits

 

For more information, please call Riker Danzig's Trenton office to speak with one of our attorneys or paraprofessionals. This document is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as a legal opinion. An attorney should be consulted to determine the implications of these laws in specific situations.