§ 8040 Certificates of election.
No certificate of election shall be granted to any candidate until the Superior Court has certified that such candidate has caused to be filed all reports required by § 8030 of this title to be filed prior to the election.
§ 8041 Duties and powers of Commissioner.
The Commissioner shall:
(1) Make and publish such rules and regulations not inconsistent with the provisions of this chapter as are necessary to implement and enforce this chapter. Upon their adoption under the provisions of the Administrative Procedures Act (Chapter 101 of Title 29), such rules and regulations shall have the force and effect of law. Without limitation of the foregoing, no later than December 31, 2012, the Commissioner shall promulgate all forms required in connection with the filing of reports under this chapter, as well as regulations:
a. Exempting, to the extent possible, persons from reporting duplicative information hereunder;
b. Promulgating standards with respect to the size, layout and timing of the statements required under § 8021 of this title;
c. Adopting any amendments or modifications to the statements required under § 8021 of this title, or exemptions from the requirements thereunder; and
d. Adopting procedures for the electronic filing of reports and the posting of said reports to the Commissioner of Elections’ web site.
(2) At the request of any person, make a ruling that applies this chapter to a set of facts specified by the person. The entire such ruling shall be made in writing, and a copy thereof shall be made available to any person, except that the identity of the person that requested the ruling shall not be disclosed without the person’s consent. Copies of the ruling shall be mailed immediately to the Governor, the Attorney General and the chair of each political party entitled to be listed on any general election ballot under § 3001 of this title. Within 7 days after any such ruling is made, a summary thereof shall be mailed to each candidate having a committee which has not completed its activities on file in the office of the Commissioner and shall be distributed to any person who has, within the previous 12 months, requested distribution of such summaries. Any candidate or treasurer who reasonably and in good faith acts in reliance upon any ruling requested by that candidate or treasurer pursuant to this section, shall not be liable nor subject to any penalty with respect to conduct conforming to the ruling, provided there was a full disclosure to the Commissioner of all material facts necessary for the ruling.
(3) Mail to the treasurer of every political committee, to every candidate for whom a political committee has been formed, and to every candidate who has notified the Commissioner of the candidate’s candidacy under § 3101 of this title, a copy of this chapter, the rules and regulations thereunder and a concise explanation of their terms, responsibilities and penalties, not later than 15 days after such political committee has been formed or such candidate has filed for office. In January of every election year, the Commissioner shall send similar documents to the chairs of all political parties’ legally recognized political party subdivisions, down to the local organizing district level.
(4) Retain and permit public inspection of all reports required to be filed under this chapter for 10 years after the end of the calendar year to which they pertain.
§ 8042 Civil remedies.
For purposes of any civil remedy on behalf of any injured person, the Court of Chancery shall have jurisdiction.
§ 8043 Violations; penalties; jurisdiction in Superior Court.
(a) Except as set forth in § 8044 of this title, any person who knowingly violates any provision of § 8003, § 8004 or § 8005 of this title shall be guilty of a class B misdemeanor.
(b) Any person who knowingly accepts or knowingly makes an unlawful contribution or expenditure in violation of any provision of subchapter II or III of this chapter shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor.
(c) Any reporting party who knowingly files any report required under this chapter that is false in any material respect, or fails to file any such report, shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor. For purposes of this subchapter, “reporting party” means any candidate, treasurer or other person required to file reports under this chapter.
(d) Any person who knowingly violates any provision of § 8006 of this title shall be guilty of a class G felony.
(e) A reporting party who reasonably relies upon information provided by another person which is inaccurate, false or misleading and who has no reason to know that such information was inaccurate, false or misleading, shall not be liable for any report filed by such reporting party which is inaccurate, false or misleading as a result of such information, if such reporting party, within 30 days after learning that such information was inaccurate, false or misleading, files an amended report with the Commissioner that corrects the inaccurate, false or misleading aspects of the report. Where a reporting party files an amended report later than 30 days after learning that such information was inaccurate, false or misleading, the reporting party shall not be liable if the reporting party shows good cause for filing the amended report beyond the 30-day period.
(f) The Superior Court shall have jurisdiction over all offenses under this chapter.
(g) A reporting party shall report immediately to the Commissioner and the Attorney General any attempt to make a prohibited contribution, or to demand a prohibited expenditure, where such attempt is made with intent to violate this chapter.
(h) A reporting party who receives a prohibited contribution or makes a prohibited expenditure without any intention to violate this chapter, but who returns the contribution or reimburses the political committee or other person making expenditure within 7 days after learning that the contribution or expenditure was prohibited, shall not be liable for any violation of this chapter. A reporting party may also donate a prohibited or suspected prohibited contribution to any charitable organization listed in subchapter IX, Chapter 11 of Title 30.
(i) A reporting party who violates § 8021 of this title shall be assessed a fine by the Commissioner of $500 or 25% of the cost of the campaign advertisement subject thereto, whichever is greater.
§ 8044 Tardy and incomplete reports.
(a) Any reporting party who fails to file or deliver to the Commissioner any report required under this chapter shall be assessed a fine by the Commissioner of $50 for each day that such report is tardy in delivery to the Commissioner. In the event any report required under this chapter shall be incomplete, such report shall be deemed tardy for purposes of this section. Notwithstanding the foregoing, a reporting party shall be entitled to an automatic, 1-time 24-hour extension hereunder, provided such party notifies the Commissioner in writing thereof no later than 11:59 p.m. on the date such report is due.
(b) In the event that the Commissioner determines a report is incomplete or otherwise tardy, the Commissioner shall immediately notify the reporting party thereof in writing. Such notice shall state that a fine is being assessed for each late day that the report is incomplete or otherwise tardy and, to the extent applicable, shall also specify why such report is incomplete or otherwise tardy.
(c) Upon receipt of the notice required under subsection (b) of this section, the reporting party shall have 30 days to appeal such fine in writing to the Reports Appeals Subcommittee established under § 220 of this title.
(d) When an appeal is timely filed under subsection (c) of this section, the Subcommittee shall do all of the following:
(1) Meet and conduct an appeal hearing within 15 days of the filing of the appeal. The Subcommittee Chair shall schedule the meeting and give notice of the meeting to the members and the reporting party that filed the appeal.
(2) Take testimony.
(3) Keep records of all evidence taken at hearings under this section, including a recording of the hearing by electronic or any other means standard to recording judicial or quasi-judicial hearings.
(4) Make and put into writing factual findings and conclusions regarding the appeal.
(5) Notify the reporting party of the Subcommittee’s factual findings and conclusions regarding the appeal, by mail to the reporting party’s last known address or electronic means, within 10 business days of the hearing on the appeal.
(e) The reporting party shall have the opportunity and burden of proof to show the Reports Appeals Subcommittee, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the reporting party’s tardiness in filing a report required under this chapter is due to reasonable cause and not wilful neglect.
(f) The payment of any fines due under this section is stayed pending a validly filed appeal. If the Reports Appeals Subcommittee determines that such tardiness is not due to reasonable cause, or the reporting party fails to timely file an appeal, such fine shall constitute a debt due and owing the State, assessable by the Commissioner and recoverable against the reporting party.
(g) The Reports Appeal Subcommittee shall notify the Office of the Attorney General that the reporting party has failed to file a report if a tardy report is not filed or corrected within 30 days of 1 of the following:
(1) A determination by the Reports Appeals Subcommittee that such tardiness is not due to reasonable cause.
(2) The expiration of the appeal period set forth in subsection (c) of this section.
§ 8045 Attorney General candidates.
Whenever it shall be alleged that an offense under this chapter has been committed by a candidate for the Office of Attorney General of Delaware, if the Chancellor of the State of Delaware finds probable cause, based on sworn information, to believe this chapter has been violated, a member of the Bar of the Supreme Court of the State of Delaware shall be appointed as independent counsel by the Chancellor. Such independent counsel shall have the authority to prosecute any violation of this chapter that has been committed by any candidate for the Office of Attorney General.
§ 8045A Use of prerecorded or automated voice message.
(a) Every individual, party, entity, person, including a corporation, organization, political or otherwise, candidate for public office, political party, company, or otherwise that makes an automated telephone call, which includes without limitation a pre-recorded or automated voice message and is commonly referred to as a “robo call,” in support of and/or against a candidate for public office and/or a political party shall fully disclose, at the start of such call and before any message is delivered:
(1) The full, legal name of the individual, party, entity, person, including a corporation, organization, political or otherwise, candidate for public office, political party, committee, company, or otherwise on whose behalf such individual, party, entity, person, including a corporation, organization, political or otherwise, candidate for public office, political party, committee, company, or otherwise is placing the automated call;
(2) The individual, party, entity, person, including a corporation, organization, political or otherwise, candidate for public office, political party, committee, company, or otherwise that has paid for the automated telephone call; and
(3) When paragraphs (a)(1) and/or (a)(2) of this section are other than an individual, disclosure of the name of the president (or other chief officer and treasurer) of the entity listed in paragraphs (a)(1) and/or (a)(2) of this section shall also be made.
(b) An automated call, as described in subsection (a) of this section, shall be received no earlier than 8 a.m. nor later then 9 p.m., as such time is determined in the State.
(c) Failure to make the disclosures mandated by subsection (a) of this section or to comply with the restrictions set forth in subsection (b) of this section shall result in a civil fine of $25 per incident, as determined by each household in the State that was called and the caller failed to make the necessary disclosures in subsection (a) of this section or a call was received in violation of the restrictions set forth in subsection (b) of this section.
§ 8046 Short title.
This chapter shall be known as the “Campaign Financing and Disclosure Act of 1990.”