2010-078
Created By: Elizabeth Sanders on 03/31/2010 at 12:43 PM
Category: Campaign Finance Advisory Opinions
Caption: An advisory opinion that a State Representative, as an owner of a public relations firm, may provide compensated fund-raising services to candidates during a regular legislative session.
Dismissed Document:

March 31, 2010


The Honorable Nancy Landry
State Representative, District 31
P.O. Box 53529
Lafayette, LA 70505

Re: Ethics Board Docket No. 2010-078

Dear Representative Landry:

The Louisiana Board of Ethics, acting in its capacity as the Supervisory Committee on Campaign Finance Disclosure, at its March 19, 2010 meeting, considered your request for an advisory opinion concerning fund-raising activities during session in connection with your public relations firm. You state that you own a public relations firm that manages the fund-raising activities of candidates and other political entities.

Section 1505.2Q(1) of the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act (LSA-R.S. 18:1505.2Q) (CFDA) prohibits a legislator from accepting or depositing a contribution, loan, or transfer of funds or accepting and using any in-kind contribution for his own campaign during a regular legislative session.

In reference to the specific questions asked of the Board, the Board concluded and instructed me to inform you of the following with respect to your receipt of compensation as an owner of a public relations firm:

1. Whether you are prohibited from raising funds for a judicial candidate?

The CFDA does not prohibit you from receiving compensation for raising funds for a judicial candidate. You are not raising funds or accepting contributions for your own campaign, therefore, the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act does not prohibit you from raising funds for a judicial candidate.

2. Whether you are prohibited from raising funds for a judicial candidate during a regular legislative session?

The CFDA does not prohibit you from receiving compensation for raising funds for a judicial candidate. You are not raising funds or accepting contributions for your own campaign, therefore, the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act does not prohibit you from raising funds for a judicial candidate at any time including during a regular legislative session.

3. Whether you are prohibited from raising funds for a political action committee, the funds of which may eventually be used to contribute to legislative races?

The CFDA does not prohibit you from receiving compensation for fundraising for a political committee. You are not raising funds or accepting contributions for your own campaign, therefore, the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act does not prohibit you from raising funds for a political action committee, the funds of which may eventually be used to contribute to legislative races.

4. Whether you are prohibited from raising funds for a political action committee, the funds of which may eventually be used to contribute to legislative races during a regular legislative session?

The CFDA does not prohibit you from receiving compensation for fundraising for a political action committee, the funds of which may eventually be used to contribute to legislative races during a regular legislative session. You are not raising funds or accepting contributions for your own campaign, therefore, the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act does not prohibit you from raising funds for a political action committee, the funds of which may eventually be used to contribute to legislative races at any time, including during a regular legislative session.

5. Whether you are prohibited from raising funds for a legislative candidate, other than yourself?

The prohibition in Section 1505.2Q(1) applies to contributions accepted or deposited during a regular legislative session for the candidate's own campaign. Since you are not raising funds for your own campaign, the CFDA does not prohibit you from receiving compensation for raising funds for a legislative candidate. However, if the candidate is a legislator, he is prohibited from accepting or depositing the contribution during a regular legislative session, unless the contribution is for an office other than that of state legislator or if the election occurs during the regular legislative session or within sixty days after such legislative session adjourns.

6. Whether you are prohibited from raising funds for any other office holder or potential office holder during a regular legislative session?

The prohibition in Section 1505.2Q(1) applies to contributions received for the candidate's own campaign. You are not raising funds for your own campaign, therefore, the CFDA does not prohibit you from receiving compensation for raising funds for any other office holder or potential office holder during a regular legislative session.

This advisory opinion is based solely on the facts as set forth herein. Changes to the facts as presented may result in a different application of the provisions of the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act. The Board issues no opinion as to past conduct or laws other than the Code of Governmental Ethics and the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act. If you have any questions, please contact me at (225) 219-5600 or (800) 842-6630.

Sincerely,

LOUISIANA BOARD OF ETHICS



Alesia M. Ardoin
For the Board

...........................