SB 882 - This act modifies the law relating to the Missouri Ethics Commission and gubernatorial appointments.
LOBBYIST RECORDS (105.473)
Lobbyists and lobbyist principals are required to maintain accurate records of expenditures. Those acting as agents for lobbyists or lobbyist principals shall deliver detailed accounts of their actions to the lobbyist or lobbyist principal within 24 hours of a request by the lobbyist or lobbyist principal.
FILING DATES (105.487, 130.046)
The act ensures that the financial interest statement filed by appointed public officials and certain employees covers the same time period as those filed by elected officials.
Currently, campaign finance disclosure reports must be postmarked no later than midnight of the day previous to the day of the filing deadline. This act moves that deadline to midnight of the day of the filing deadline.
ETHICS COMMISSION DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES (105.955, 105.957, 105.959, 105.961, 105.966)
Term extensions for commission members vacating their seats shall not exceed 120 days.
The commission may make investigations rather than audits and during such investigations, the commission may delegate the power to issue subpoenas to the executive director of the ethics commission.
Complaints to the ethics commission shall be properly signed and notarized.
Under supervision of the commission, the executive director may conduct an independent investigation of an ethics violation without a complaint if there are reasonable grounds to believe that a violation has occurred. The commission shall notify the person under investigation and assign a special investigator. The investigations of the executive director are confidential and the revealing of such information shall be cause for removal or dismissal. Investigations failing to establish reasonable grounds to believe a violation has occurred shall be terminated.
The Ethics Commission is authorized to refer a report establishing a reasonable belief that a criminal law has occurred, directly to a prosecuting attorney instead of a special prosecutor appointed from a panel of attorneys.
Determinations that violations have occurred, other than referrals for criminal prosecution, may be appealed to the Circuit Court of Cole County.
The act removes a provision allowing extra time for investigations when they are assigned to a retired judge and a provision allowing the commission to file a petition to seek extra time.
LATE FEE ASSESSMENTS (105.963)
The late filing fee for filing campaign disclosure reports and statements of limited activity are increased from $10 to $50 per day not to exceed $3,000. The executive director is allowed to send notice by other means than registered mail within 7 days of failure to file. Unpaid late filing fees may be collected through garnishment and execution against a committee’s official depository account after a 30 day delinquency.
Lobbyists required to file expenditure reports, individuals required to file financial disclosure reports, and candidates and committees required to file disclosure statements may appeal late fee assessments in the same manner with the commission.
COMMITTEE ORGANIZATION AND TERMINATION (130.011, 130.021)
Committee treasurers and deputy treasurers are no longer required to reside in the district or county in which the committee sits.
Continuing committees are required to file a statements of organization no later than 60 days prior to the election for which the committee receives contributions or makes expenditures and no later than 30 days for all other committees. This change will require continuing committees to report the name of the candidate or ballot issue supported or opposed at the time they file the statement of organization.
Persons may not form a new committee or act as treasurer or deputy treasurer of a committee until all previous campaign disclosure reports and statements of limited activity are current and outstanding fees are paid.
TECHNICAL CORRECTION (130.036)
An incorrect reference to the campaign finance review board is replaced with Missouri Ethics Commission.
ELECTRONIC FILING (130.057)
All committees are required to file reports in electronic form.
GUBERNATORIAL APPOINTMENTS (138.190, 138.200, 215.020, 286.010, 386.050, 621.015)
This act requires the governor to fill vacancies and appoint new commissioners within thirty days of the vacancy or expiration of the term for the following commissioners: the Public Service Commission, the State Tax Commission, the Missouri Housing Development Commission, the Administrative Hearing Commission and the Labor and Industrial Relations Commission.
This act is similar to SB 434 (2009).