FAQs

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527 political organizations
Candidates
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Caucuses
Complaints
Contributions
Definitions
Disclosure
Electioneering
Expenditures
Federal Political Action Committees (PACs)
Filing
Fundraising
Independent expenditures
Issue committees
Limited liability companies (LLCs)
Lobbyists
Major contributors
Political committees
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Registered agents
School district candidates
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Searching
Small donor committees
Voluntary spending limits



Contributions

Q1.  How do I report contributions?

A1.  To report contributions:

  1. Log in to your TRACER account.
  2. Click on the "Contribution" tab at the top of the page.
  3. Click on "Add".
  4. Enter your information into the form.

 

Q2. How do I associate a contributor to a contribution?

A2.  You can associate a contributor to a contribution one of two ways:

  1. Enter information into the contributor fields manually, or
  2. If the contributor has been entered into the system before, click on "Search".  You can search for the contributor and have their information automatically applied to the current contribution.

 

Q3. Can I enter contributions into the system at any time?

A3.  Yes, you can enter contributions throughout the reporting period.  This information will be stored in the system, but it will not be viewable by the public until you file a report.

 

Q4. How do I modify a contribution that has already been entered?

A4.  If you need to modify a previously entered (but not yet reported) contribution, go to your Contribution Administration page.

If the contribution was entered recently, click on "Update".

If the contribution can't be found through the "Update" link, click on "Find" to locate the contribution.

 

Q5. How do I file a report?

A5.  To file a report:

  1. Log in to your TRACER account.
  2. On the Candidate/Committee Overview page, there is a section called "Reports Due". This section lists required reports, their due dates, and the status of each report.
  3. Next to the report that you want to file, click on "View/File".
  4. Follow the instructions on the page.
  5. When you are finished, click on "File".
  6. You will be asked to confirm that you want to file the report.  Click on "Ok" to file the report.
  7. Click on "Finished".

Your report is filed once you have clicked on "Finished"; note that if you leave this page before clicking on "Finished", the report will be saved, but not filed.

See the filing FAQs for more information about the filing system.

 

Q6. How do I file a major contributor report?

A6.  See the major contributor FAQs.

 

Q7. I'm a candidate, but I'm not accepting contributions.  Do I have to file contribution reports?

A7.  Standalone candidates (candidates without a candidate committee) do not have to file contribution reports, but you do need to file expenditure reports.

 

Q8. What do we do with unexpended contributions?

A8.  Unexpended campaign funds may be:

  • Contributed to a political party (subject to contribution limits).
  • Contributed to a new committee established by the same candidate for a new office (subject to contribution limits).
  • Donated to an IRS-recognized charitable organization.
  • Returned to contributors.
  • Retained for use in a later campaign by the same candidate.
  • If you were elected, you may also use your unexpended campaign funds for voter registration, political issue education (e.g. educating your constituents or yourself about relevant political matters; contributions to issue
    committees are not permitted), postsecondary educational scholarships, or to defray reasonable and necessary expenses related to your official duties as an elected official (including communicating with your constituents).

 

Q9. Can I use unexpended funds from my candidate committee to run for a different office?

A9.  If you wish to run for a different office, you can use some or all of your old committee funds, subject to the following restrictions:

  • No more than 20% of the voluntary campaign spending limit for the new office can be transferred to the new committee if the new committee is for a state office (excluding RTD).  This limit applies also to committees remaining open
    and carrying over for the same office in a new election cycle.
  • The committee funds rolled over to the new committee are counted as a contribution from a political party.
  • The old candidate committee must be closed within 10 days of opening a new committee for a new office. You must open a new candidate committee if you run for a different office.

Unexpended funds cannot be carried over to a new race in some circumstances, such as those in which the previous race was not subject to contribution limits but the new race is.

 

Q10. What statutes and rules apply to contributions?

A10.  The following provisions apply to contributions:

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