Elections and Reapportionment


Political Reform



Political Reform

SB 244* (Sher-D) Political Reform Act of 1974: preelection statements

Requires state and county general purpose committees to file preelection statements when they receive contributions of $1,000 or more during the time period for the preelection statement. Expands the information that is required in a late expenditure report to include the name, street address, occupation, and name of employer (or business, if self-employed), of persons contributing $100 or more during the specified period, as well as the date and amount of each contribution during the period covered by that statement.

(Died on Senate Inactive File)

SB 304* (Karnette-D) Political Reform: political advertisement

Repeals the provisions of Proposition 208 and reenacts similar provisions relating to campaign advertisements on candidates and ballot measures. Permis the printing of candidate statements in the local voters pamphlet.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

SB 1357 (Burton-D) Political Reform Act: expenditures

Excludes from the definition of "expenditure," for the purpose of the voluntary expenditure ceiling, taxes paid on funds deposited within a candidate's campaign bank account.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 1736* (Johnston-D) Campaign reporting: issue advocacy communications

Requires persons who receive contributions or make payments totaling $10,000 or more for issue advocacy communications to file reports as a committee.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

SB 1737 (McPherson-R) Political Reform Act: commission

Creates a bipartisan commission to report on the effect of the Political Reform Act of 1974 upon political speech protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, candidates, campaign committees, the voters, state and local officials, and public employees.

Chapter 1080, Statutes of 1998

SB 1828 (Johnson-R) Political Reform: gifts

Requires the Fair Political Practices Commission to adjust the gift limit annually rather than biennially.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 1918 (Sher-D) Political Reform: late Independent Expenditure Reports

Includes independent committees to the group of candidates/committees required to file later independent expenditures.

(Died in Senate Appropriations Committee)

SB 1921 (Hayden-D) Political consultants: lobbying

Prohibits political candidates from lobbying a client while the client holds a public office and from lobbying a former client for a period of one year after their contractual relationship has terminated, as specified.

(Failed passage in Senate Judiciary Committee)

SB 2090 (Maddy-R) Political Reform Act: campaign statements

Revises the 1974 Political Reform Act's definition of "contribution" to additionally include payments made without full and adequate consideration to a person or persons who, within 12 months following the payment, qualify as a committee by making contributions totaling $10,000 or more in a calendar year to, or at the behest of, candidates or other committees. Specifies these payments are deemed contributions made on the date the recipient qualifies as a committee.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

SB 2106 (Watson-D) Campaign Finance

Repeals the provisions of the Political Reform Act of 1974 prohibiting public officers from expending and candidates from accepting public monies to seek election office and adds the Campaign Financing Reform Act of 2000, in which legislative candidates would be allowed to obtain public funds from the Legislative Election Fund to run their campaigns, as specified.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 2110 (Mountjoy-R) Political Reform Act: employment restrictions

Precludes a state or local agency administrative official for two years after leaving office or employment with a state or local agency from being employed by, or working for, or representing any individual or organization that is regulated by, or subject to, policy established by the state agency or local agency.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

AB 1336 (Vincent-D) Ballot measure committees: campaign statements

Requires a general purpose committee that receives $1,000 or more in a calendar year to support or oppose a ballot measure to either form a separate primarily formed committee for each measure it supports or opposes during the qualification period, or designate itself as a primarily formed committee. Requires a primarily formed committee that expends $100 or more to qualify, support or oppose two or more measures to file a campaign statements. Changes the location where a superior court judge files his or her campaign statement.

(Died on Senate Inactive File)

AB 1864 (Papan-D) Political Reform Act: revisions

Amends the Political Reform Act of 1974 by revising certain dollar threshold amounts applicable to trigger the filing of campaign reports, the application of conflict of interest provisions, and late filing penalties. Changes the compensation of the members of the Fair Political Practices Commission. Repeals a provision of Proposition 208 imposing liability for "aiding and abetting" violations, and enacts a revised version. States legislative findings and declarations on the need therefore. Makes other procedural and technical changes.

Vetoed by the Governor

AB 1923 (Firestone-R) Campaign expenditure reports

Requires additional information on late independent expenditure reports, and reenacts similar provisions of Proposition 208 relevant to committees and specifying when expendiures are not independent.


(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 2012* (Keeley-D) Political Reform Act Reports

Requires that information produced from Political Reform Act reports and statements be a public record.

(Died in Assembly Governmental Organization Committee)

AB 2159 (Keeley-D) Campaign contributions

Prohibits candiates for the Legislature and for statewide elective office from accepting contributions during certain periods before an election similar to the fundraising prohibitions imposed by Proposition 208 of the November 11, 1996 general election.

(Failed passage in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 2174 (Martinez-D) Postgovernment employment restrictions

Prohibits certain designated legislative employees from lobbying before the Legislature for pay, for a specified time period after leaving legislative employment.

(Failed passage in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 2232 (Bowen-D) Elections: contributions

Allows a candidate seeking elective office to set up a "compliance account" to pay the costs of complying with campaign and reporting require,emts of the Political Reform Act of 1974.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 2327 (Frusetta-R) Campaign statements: contributions

Lowers the threshold for itemizing contributions and expenditures in campaign disclosure statements from $100 to $50. Lowers the limit for acceptance of cash or anonymous contributions from $100 to $50.

(Failed passage in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

AB 2814 (Papan-D) Political Reform: conflict of interest

Extends to public officials appointed by the Governor the prohibitions against the making or participating in the making of, or the use of an official position to influence, governmental decisions, as specified, where the public official knows or has reason to know that he or she has a financial interest, as defined.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)


SB 7 (Kopp-I) Elections: voting

Permits, for purposes of a voter to vote absentee, the office of an election official to include satellite locations. Extends the prohibition on electioneering within 100 feet of a polling place on election day to include any time a voter may be casting his or her ballot in an election officials' office. Revises provisions of law concerning the delivery of ballots to persons ill, disabled, or physically handicapped.

Chapter 554, Statutes of 1998

SB 22 (Johnson-R) County offices: term limits

Permits the voters to impose prospective term limits upon any elective nonjudicial county office, including, but not limited to, district attorneys, assessors, clerk recorders, and sheriffs. Permits these term limit proposals to be placed on the ballot by the county board of supervisors or by the voters through the initiative process, and provides that, in either case, the proposals cannot become operative until approved at a regular election. Permits the repeal of the term limits upon voter approval.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment)

SB 241 (Knight-R) Absentee ballots: challenges

Prohibits the inclusion of any information regarding political party affiliation on an absentee voter's identification envelope, or on the list of absent voters required to be produced for purposes of challenging ballots. Applies these provisions to general elections. Prohibits the absentee voter's partisan affiliation from being made visible to non-elections officials while signatures are compared.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

SB 242 (Knight-R) Elections: absentee voters

Requires election officials to mail, within 90 days after the election, a notice to each absentee voter whose ballot was rejected stating the reasons for rejection.

(Died Senate Appropriations Committee)

SB 444 (Knight-R) Voter registration

Redesigns the voter registration card, particularly the affidavit portion that is completed by the voter. Requires the voter to individually initial specified declarations on the card, as well as signing the card. Requires naturalized citizens to include on the affidavit their naturalization certificate number and date of naturalization. Removes the requirement that political parties appear in the affidavit portion of the card. Requires that any affidavit that lacks the voter's signature, or any of the four sets of required initials be rejected and returned to the voter. Requires elections officials, when returning the affidavit, to notify the affiant why the card was rejected, and to include a new voter registration form.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 489 (Alpert-D) Vote records: domestic violence

Creates an address confidentiality program for victims of domestic violence or those who fear domestic violence, operated by the Secretary of State. Includes a substitute address, mail forwarding service, and name and address confidentiality in marriage and voter records.

Chapter 1005, Statutes of 1998

SB 490 (Lewis-R) Absentee ballots: counting

Includes, on the absent voter identification envelope, a warning that the ballot should not be counted if the envelope is not signed with a signature that appears to be the same as the one on the affidavit of registration.

Chapter 372, Statutes of 1998

SB 520 (Rainey-R) Elections

Places ACA 10 (Runner-R), relating to local sales tax revenue sharing, on the November 3, 1998 statewide general election after the submission deadline.

Chapter 408, Statutes of 1998

SB 627 (Karnette-D) Elections: registration

Specifically applies the rights and procedures of a superior court to compel qualified electors who claim to have registered to vote through the State Department of Motor Vehicles or any other specified public agency, but whose registration has not been acknowledged by the county elections officials. Makes various changes to existing law related to election day procedures, including closing of polls, ballot counting procedures, recounts, and write-in and absentee balloting processing.

Chapter 1073, Statutes of 1998

SB 918 (Hughes-D) Voter registration: confidentiality

Permits, until January 1, 2001, specified peace officers to request the county elections officials to declare as confidential certain items of voter registration information, or of immediate family members, that appear on the affidavit and any list or index of voters.

(Died on Assembly Third Reading File)

SB 1097 (Kopp-I) Insurance Commissioner: campaign contributions

Prohibits any person regulated by the Insurance Commissioner, and persons or committees which are acting on behalf of regulated persons, from making campaign contributions to a candidate for the office of Insurance Commissioner, as specified.

(Failed passage on Senate Floor)

SB 1223 (Monteith-R) Mail ballot elections

Requires elections officials, upon the receipt of a mailed ballot, to compare the signature and residence address on the envelope containing the ballot with the signature and residence address on the voter's affidavit of registration, as specified, and to verify that they are the same before depositing the ballot into the ballot container. Provides that a variation between the compared signatures by the substitution of initials for the first or middle name does not invalidate the ballot.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 1274 (Hurtt-R) Payment for voting

Conforms state law to be federal law, prohibiting any person from receiving any valuable consideration (money, gifts, loan, office, place, or employment) in exchange for voting or refraining from voting. Exempts transportation to a polling place, which could be construed as a valuable consideration from the prohibition.

(Failed passage in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 1449 (Thompson-D) Statewide initiatives

Requires the Legislative Counsel to prepare a review of a proposed measure, including its form, the clarity of language, and potential legal problems, as specified.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

SB 1505* (Lewis-R) Presidential primary elections: open primary

Enacts the Save the Presidential Primary Act of 1998 by amending the Open Primary Act to revise balloting for direct presidential primary elections. Brings California into conformity with Democratic and Republican National Committees rules and regulations governing delegations.

Chapter 147, Statutes of 1998

This bill calls for the issue to be on the November 1998 election making it an urgency clause.

SB 1510 (Polanco-D) Elections: proposed charters

Establishes a time period applicable to the calling and holding of a special election at which a city charter proposal by a charter commission may be submitted to the voters for their approval.

Chapter 564, Statutes of 1998

Similar bill was AB 2276 (Murray-D), which died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee.

SB 1533 (Senate Elections And Reapportionment Committee) Omnibus Elections Bill

Makes various changes to the Elections Code by repealing obsolete provisions and corrects some prior recodification errors.

Chapter 199, Statutes of 1998

SB 1589* (Senate Budget And Fiscal Review Committee) Budget trailer bill: Secretary of State item

Extends the time period for the repayment of the $3.5 million loan to the Secretary of State, which was for implementing and administering the statewide system to facilitate removal of duplicate or prior vote registration and reporting the election results, to December 31, 2000.

Chapter 328, Statutes of 1998

SB 1652 (Kopp-I) Santa Paula Union High School Public Library District

Requires persons elected to the Santa Paula High School District Board of Trustees in 1997 to hold office for five years.

Chapter 829, Statutes of 1998

SB 1693 (Dills-D) Elections: canvass of municipal returns

Requires city governing bodies to canvass election returns and install newly elected officers on the record Tuesday following the election instead of the first Tuesday following a municipal election, unless an earlier date is provided by resolution.

Chapter 105, Statutes of 1998

SB 1713 (Johnson-R) Campaign finance reform

Declares legislative instent to enact a campaign finance reform measure that will not conflict with the U.S. Constitution.

(Died on Senate Inactive File)

SB 1748 (Kopp-I) Political campaign dues

Prohibits local agencies from paying membership dues to any organization that spent money on political campaigns.

(Died in Senate Local Government Committee)

SB 1764 (Karnette-D) Ballot pamphlets

Requires the Secretary of State to disseminate the complete state ballot pamphlet over the Internet.

Chapter 491, Statutes of 1998

SB 1840 (Costa-D) Registrar of voters: Kings County

Allows the Kings County Board of Supervisors to appoint a registrar in the same manner as other county offices are appointed.

Chapter 106, Statutes of 1998

SB 1877 (Dills-D) Political advertising: sign placements

Allows the placement of temporary political signs within 120 days rather than 90 days of a scheduled election.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 1953 (Vasconcellos-D) Elections and public financing

Moves the statewide direct primary from June to September and deletes the requirement that the presidential primary be consolidated with the statewide direct primary. Establishes a State Candidate Election Fund in which individuals could voluntarily direct up to $5 of their California income tax each year.

(Failed passage in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 1979 (Schiff-D) Initiative petition

Requires that any petition circulated for signatures contain a notice stating whether the individual circulating the petition for signatures is a volunteer or paid to collect signatures. Prohibits a committee from sponsoring the circulation of any petition for signature unless the committee is identified by name and address on the petition.

Vetoed by the Governor

SB 1999 (Costa-D) Presidential primary

Requires the presidential primary to be held in the first Tuesday in March in any year which is evenly divisable by the number four, and requires that the statewide direct primary in presidential election years be consolidated with the presidential primary. Also moves the statewide primary in off year presidential elections to the first Tuesday in March.

Chapter 913, Statutes of 1998

SB 2120 (Hurtt-R) Elections: voter registration and file maintenance

Provides for a state-wide procedure for voter-roll maintenance.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

SB 2146 (Karnette-D) Precincts

Requires precinct boundaries to be defined by references to geographic, physical, or other visual extension attributes. Prohibits precinct boundaries in place for the 1998 general election from being changed until January 1, 2001, and prohibits any new precincts from being created from November 30, 1998 to January 1, 2001.

(Died in Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee)

SB 2203 (McPherson-R) Elections: all mail ballot

Allows an all mail ballot election to be consolidated by any city or district within Monterey County.

Vetoed by the Governor

SCA 5 (Karnette-D) Initiative measures

Provides that an initiative measure embraces one subject when each provision of the measure is reasonably germane to the general objective or purpose of the measure, and each provision of the measure is reasonably interdependent with all the other provisions therein.

(Failed passage on Senate Floor)

SCA 15 (Lewis-R) Elections: Governor and Lieutenant Governor

Provides for joint election of the Governor and the Lieutenant Governor in the general election.

(Failed passage on Senate Floor)

Similar legislation was ACA 31 (Firestone-R), which failed passage in the Assembly Governmental Organization Committee.

SCA 33 (Burton-D) Elections: party nominees and delegates

Allows only registered political party members to vote for nominees or nominating convention delegates of their party.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

SCA 35 (Maddy-R) Legislative term limits

Changes the terms of senator from four to six years. Specifies that no senator may serve more than two consecutive terms and no member of the Assembly may serve more than four consecutive terms in the Assembly beginning January 1, 2000.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

Other term limit legislation included the following, all of which died in the Assembly:

ACA 17 (Kaloogian-R)

ACA 18 (Oller-R)

ACA 19 (Frusetta-R)

ACA 20 (Kuehl-D)

ACA 21 (Papan-D), which failed passage on the Assembly Floor

ACA 46 (Thomson-R)

AB 73 (Bordonaro-R) Petition circulation: licensing

Requires every person who receives payment, or anything of value, for circulating for signature, or obtaining signatures to, a petition being circulated under the Elections Code, to first obtain a permit as a "Paid Political Circulator" from the Secretary of State, as specified.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment, and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 188 (Murray-D) Elections: ballot measures

Prohibits campaign funds from being used to support or oppose a petition or qualified ballot measure other than the petition or qualified ballot measure for which the funds were solicited.

Vetoed by the Governor

AB 238 (Kuykendall-R) Absent voters

Requires the election official, after canvassing the returns for an election, to compare the absent voters list with the records of voters who cast provisional ballots in each precinct to determine if any voter cast more than one ballot. Requires that an identification envelope for an absentee ballot that is returned by a person authorized by the voter contain specified information.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

AB 674 (Leonard-R) Campaign contributions and expenditures

Places an alternative package of campaign finance reforms on the ballot for voter approval in order to make corrections to Proposition 208 of 1996.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 677* (Aguiar-R) Initiative measures: constitutional review

Requires a nonbiding advisory opinion, by an independent panel of three appellate judges, regarding the constitutionality of a proposed statewide initiative measure, to appear with the measure in the ballot pamphlet.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

AB 679 (Caldera-D) Ballot measures

Requires that legislative measures submitted to the voters and statewide initiative measures be grouped together in the order in which they qualify for the ballot. Adds to the existing heading on the ballot, "Measures Submitted to the Voters," the captions "These Measures Were Placed On The Ballot By The Legislature" or "These Measures Were Placed On The Ballot By The Circulation Of Petitions."

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 834* (Bowen-D) Special election: Ninth Senate District

Allows for the special general election to fill the vacancy in the Ninth Senate District to be consolidated with the November 3, 1998 statewide general election.

Chapter 27, Statutes of 1998

AB 1094 (Assembly Judiciary Committee) Judicial candidates

Provides that no candidate for a judicial office shall be rquired to state his or her residential address on the declaration of intention, so long as an elections official verifies that their address is within the appropriate political subdivision and adds the notation "verified" to the residential address line of the form.

Chapter 932, Statutes of 1998

AB 1233 (Leach-R) Campaign material

Prohibits the use of altered photographs in campaign material, as specified, unless the photograph is accompanied by a specified disclosure statement.

Chapter 718, Statutes of 1998

A similar bill was AB 2281 (Leach-R), which died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendment Committee.

AB 1359 (Bowen-D) Initiative measures

Permits poponents of a qualified statewide initiative measure to propose amendments that furthers the intent and purpose of the measure.

(Died on Assembly Inactive File)

A companion measure, ACA 11 (Bowen-D), which died on the Assembly Inactive File.

AB 1685 (Hertzberg-D) Local elections: districts

Requires that county boards of supervisors, city councils and members of the governing body of a charter city conform to the existing boundaries of communities of interest when establishing boundaries of supervisorial, city council or charter city districts. Requires that at least one public hearing be held on any proposal to adjust the boundaries of a city council or charter city district prior to a vote on the same redistricting proposal.

Vetoed by the Governor

AB 1786 (Vincent-D) Voter registration

Provides for the distribution or notice of the availability of voter registration cards through the school districts, community colleges, state colleges and universities, and marriage license bureaus. Requires counties to design and implement voter registration outreach plans. Establishes a Voter Outreach Unit within the Office of the Secretary of State.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 1787 (Bowler-R) Initiative petitions: cost of verifying signatures

Specifies that the state shall pay the costs of verifying signatures for statewide initiatives.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 1808 (Vincent-D) Elections: ballots

Requires every constitutional amendment, bond measure, or other legislative measure submitted to the peopole by the Legislature to appear on the ballot of the first statewide election held at least 120 days, rather than 131 days, from adoption of the proposal by the Legislature.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 1863 (Papan-D) Candidate statements

Permits a candidate for State Assembly or State Senate to submit a candidate statement of up to 100 words for the primary election, and up to 200 words for the general election to the elections officials. Allows printing a photograph of the candidate.

(Died in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

AB 2323 (House-R) Voting procedures: voter identification

Requires local elections to verify a voter's identification and provides provisional ballots to persons who are unable/unwilling to provide proof of identification.

(Failed passage in Assembly Appropriations Committee)

AB 2435 (Oller-R) Initiatives and referenda

Prohibits public officials at both the state and local level from expending public monies to bring legal action to enjoin, invalidate, or otherwise prevent initiative or referendum measures either from being placed on the ballot for consideration by the voters or from being implemented after they have been approved by the voters.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

AB 2722 (Wildman-D) Elections: initiatives: irrigation districts

Extends the initiative process to irrigation districts currently excluded from that process, except for irrigation districts that are landowner districts.

(Failed passage in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

ACA 31 (Firestone-R) Elections: Lieutenant Governor

Eliminates the primary election for the office of lieutenant governor and allows each candidate for the office of the governor in the general election to select a running mate.

(Failed passage in Assembly Governmental Organization Committee)

ACA 41 (Goldsmith-R) Campaign contributions: prohibitions

Prohibits a business enterprise, corporation, organization, or association of individuals from making a contribution to any candidate or committee in any state or local election. States that a contribution may be made to a candidate or committee in a state or local election only by an individual.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)

ACA 48 (Lempert-D) Campaign expenditures: limitations

Allows the imposition, by legislative statute or by initiative measure, of limits on campaign expenditures, including independent expenditures, made to support or oppose candidates for elective office.

(Died in Assembly Elections, Reapportionment and Constitutional Amendments Committee)