Amended in Senate August 20, 2015

Amended in Senate July 15, 2015

Amended in Senate July 2, 2015

Amended in Assembly April 20, 2015

California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 990


Introduced by Assembly Member Bonilla

(Coauthor: Assembly Member Gordon)

February 26, 2015


An act to amend Sections 84506.5begin delete and 84507end deletebegin insert, 84507, and 84511end insert of the Government Code, relating to the Political Reform Act of 1974, and declaring the urgency thereof, to take effect immediately.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 990, as amended, Bonilla. Political Reform Act of 1974: advertisement disclosures.

Existing law, the Political Reform Act of 1974, provides for the comprehensive regulation of campaign financing, including requiring the reporting of campaign contributions and expenditures and imposing other reporting and recordkeeping requirements on campaign committees. The act additionally imposes various disclosure statement requirements with respect to advertisements supporting or opposing a candidate or ballot measure, including a requirement that the disclosure statements be printed clearly and legibly in no less than 10-point type and in a conspicuous manner, as specified. The act also requires that an advertisement supporting or opposing a candidate that is paid for by an independent expenditure include a statement that it was not authorized by a candidate or a committee controlled by a candidate.

This bill would require that disclosure statements be printed in no less thanbegin delete 18-point,end deletebegin insert 14-pointend insert bold, sans serif type font. The bill would require that an advertisement supporting or opposing a candidate that is paid for by an independent expenditure include a disclosure statement with specific content and, if the advertisement is mailed, would require that the disclosure statement be located within a quarter of an inch of the recipient’s name and address and be contained within a box that meets prescribed criteria.

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The act also requires certain ballot measure advertisements to include a specified disclosure statement if it is paid for by a committee that pays an individual for his or her appearance in the advertisement, as specified.

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This bill would repeal a requirement that the disclosure statement appear in roman font.

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The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.

This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.

The Political Reform Act of 1974, an initiative measure, provides that the Legislature may amend the act to further the act’s purposes upon a 23 vote of each house and compliance with specified procedural requirements.

This bill would declare that it furthers the purposes of the act.

This bill would declare that it is to take effect immediately as an urgency statute.

Vote: 23. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: yes.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P2    1

SECTION 1.  

Section 84506.5 of the Government Code is
2amended to read:

3

84506.5.  

(a) An advertisement supporting or opposing a
4candidate that is paid for by an independent expenditure must
5include the following statement: This advertisement was not
6authorized or paid for bybegin delete theend deletebegin insert aend insert candidatebegin insert for this officeend insert or a
7committee controlled bybegin delete theend deletebegin insert aend insert candidatebegin insert for this officeend insert.

P3    1(b) In addition to the requirements of Section 84507, a mailed
2advertisement subject to this section shall also comply with each
3of the following:

4(1) The disclosure statement in subdivision (a) shall be located
5within one quarter of an inch of the recipient’s name and address
6as printed on the advertisement.

7(2) The text of the disclosure statement shall be contained in a
8box with an outline that has a line weight of at leastbegin delete 5.25end deletebegin insert 3.25end insert pt.
9The background color of the box shall be in a contrasting color to
10the background of the advertisement. The outline of the box shall
11be in a contrasting color to both the background color of the
12advertisement and the background color of the box. The color of
13the text shall be in a contrasting color to the background color of
14the box.

15

SEC. 2.  

Section 84507 of the Government Code is amended
16to read:

17

84507.  

Any disclosure statement required by this article shall
18be printed clearly and legibly in no less thanbegin delete 18-point,end deletebegin insert 14-point,end insert
19 bold, sans serif type font and in a conspicuous manner as defined
20by the commission or, if the communication is broadcast, the
21information shall be spoken so as to be clearly audible and
22understood by the intended public and otherwise appropriately
23conveyed for the hearing impaired.

24begin insert

begin insertSEC. 3.end insert  

end insert

begin insertSection 84511 of the end insertbegin insertGovernment Codeend insertbegin insert is amended to
25read:end insert

26

84511.  

(a) This section applies to a committee that does either
27of the following:

28(1) Makes an expenditure of five thousand dollars ($5,000) or
29more to an individual for his or her appearance in an advertisement
30that supports or opposes the qualification, passage, or defeat of a
31ballot measure.

32(2) Makes an expenditure of any amount to an individual for
33his or her appearance in an advertisement that supports or opposes
34the qualification, passage, or defeat of a ballot measure and that
35states or suggests that the individual is a member of an occupation
36that requires licensure, certification, or other specialized,
37documented training as a prerequisite to engage in that occupation.

38(b) A committee described in subdivision (a) shall file, within
3910 days of the expenditure, a report that includes all of the
40following:

P4    1(1) An identification of the measure that is the subject of the
2advertisement.

3(2) The date of the expenditure.

4(3) The amount of the expenditure.

5(4) The name of the recipient of the expenditure.

6(5) For a committee described in paragraph (2) of subdivision
7(a), the occupation of the recipient of the expenditure.

8(c) An advertisement paid for by a committee described in
9paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) shall include a disclosure statement
10stating “(spokesperson’s name) is being paid by this campaign or
11its donors” in highly visiblebegin delete romanend delete font shown continuously if the
12advertisement consists of printed or televised material, or spoken
13in a clearly audible format if the advertisement is a radio broadcast
14or telephonic message.

15(d) (1) An advertisement paid for by a committee described in
16paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) shall include a disclosure statement
17stating “Persons portraying members of an occupation in this
18advertisement are compensated spokespersons not necessarily
19employed in those occupations” in highly visiblebegin delete romanend delete font shown
20continuously if the advertisement consists of printed or televised
21material, or spoken in a clearly audible format if the advertisement
22is a radio broadcast or telephonic message.

23(2) A committee may omit the disclosure statement required by
24this subdivision if all of the following are satisfied with respect to
25each individual identified in the report filed pursuant to subdivision
26(b) for that advertisement:

27(A) The occupation identified in the report is substantially
28similar to the occupation portrayed in the advertisement.

29(B) The committee maintains credible documentation of the
30appropriate license, certification, or other training as evidence that
31the individual may engage in the occupation identified in the report
32and portrayed in the advertisement and makes that documentation
33immediately available to the Commission upon request.

34

begin deleteSEC. 3.end delete
35begin insertSEC. 4.end insert  

No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to
36Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because
37the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school
38district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or
39infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty
40for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of
P5    1the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within
2the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California
3Constitution.

4

begin deleteSEC. 4.end delete
5begin insertSEC. 5.end insert  

The Legislature finds and declares that this bill furthers
6the purposes of the Political Reform Act of 1974 within the
7meaning of subdivision (a) of Section 81012 of the Government
8Code.

9

begin deleteSEC. 5.end delete
10begin insertSEC. 6.end insert  

This act is an urgency statute necessary for the
11immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety within
12the meaning of Article IV of the Constitution and shall go into
13immediate effect. The facts constituting the necessity are:

14In order to protect the interests of Californians who are
15empowered with the right to vote, it is appropriate that they be
16duly informed and that their constitutional right to instruct their
17representatives be protected. This purpose is best served by an
18informed electorate. The need for greater transparency of
19advertisement disclosures is vital to the interests of the State such
20that this act must take effect immediately.



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