Print Friendly HOUSE BILL NO. 196 – Public money, support candidate
HOUSE BILL NO. 196
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H0196......................................................by LOCAL GOVERNMENT
PUBLIC MONEY - SUPPORT CANDIDATE/MEASURE - Amends and adds to existing law to
prohibit the expenditure of public moneys by political subdivisions of the
state of Idaho to support or oppose ballot measures or candidates; and to
02/07 House intro - 1st rdg - to printing
02/10 Rpt prt - to W/M
|||| LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF IDAHO ||||
Fifty-seventh Legislature First Regular Session - 2003
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
HOUSE BILL NO. 196
BY LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE
1 AN ACT
2 RELATING TO EXPENDITURES OF PUBLIC MONEYS TO SUPPORT OR OPPOSE BALLOT MEASURES
3 OR CANDIDATES; AMENDING CHAPTER 66, TITLE 67, IDAHO CODE, BY THE ADDITION
4 OF A NEW SECTION 67-6630, IDAHO CODE, TO PROHIBIT THE EXPENDITURE BY A
5 POLITICAL SUBDIVISION OF THE STATE OF IDAHO OF PUBLIC MONEYS TO SUPPORT OR
6 OPPOSE BALLOT MEASURES OR CANDIDATES AND TO PROVIDE PENALTIES; AMENDING
7 SECTION 67-6625, IDAHO CODE, TO PROVIDE CIVIL AND CRIMINAL PENALTIES FOR
8 THE EXPENDITURE OF PUBLIC MONEYS TO SUPPORT OR OPPOSE BALLOT MEASURES OR
9 CANDIDATES; AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY.
10 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Idaho:
11 SECTION 1. That Chapter 66, Title 67, Idaho Code, be, and the same is
12 hereby amended by the addition thereto of a NEW SECTION, to be known and des-
13 ignated as Section 67-6630, Idaho Code, and to read as follows:
14 67-6630. PROHIBITING EXPENDITURES OF PUBLIC MONEYS TO SUPPORT OR OPPOSE
15 BALLOT MEASURES OR CANDIDATES. No political subdivision of the state of Idaho
16 shall expend public moneys, as defined in sections 57-105 and 18-5703, Idaho
17 Code, to support or oppose political candidates or ballot measures. Provided
18 however, a political subdivision, when authorized by law, may expend public
19 moneys to inform voters of the pros and cons of a ballot measure in accordance
20 with the provisions of sections 34-1812A, 34-1812B and 34-1812C, Idaho Code.
21 Any person who authorizes the expenditures of public moneys in violation of
22 this section shall be subject to the penalties provided in section 67-6625,
23 Idaho Code.
24 SECTION 2. That Section 67-6625, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby
25 amended to read as follows:
26 67-6625. VIOLATIONS -- CIVIL FINE -- MISDEMEANOR PENALTY -- PROSECUTION
27 -- LIMITATION -- VENUE. (a) Any person who violates the provisions of section
28 67-6603 through 67-6614A, 67-6617, 67-6619, 67-6620, 67-6621(a), 67-6624, or
29 67-6629 or 67-6630, Idaho Code, shall be liable for a civil fine not to exceed
30 two hundred fifty dollars ($250) if an individual, and not more than two thou-
31 sand five hundred dollars ($2,500) if a person other than an individual. The
32 burden of proof for such civil liability shall be met by showing a preponder-
33 ance of the evidence.
34 (b) Any person who violates section 67-6605 or 67-6621(b), Idaho Code,
35 and any person who knowingly and willfully violates section 67-6603 through
36 67-6614A, 67-6617, 67-6619, 67-6620, 67-6621(a), 67-6624, or 67-6629 or
37 67-6630, Idaho Code, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, in addi-
38 tion to the fines set forth in subsection (a) of this section, may be impris-
39 oned for not more than six (6) months or be both fined and imprisoned.
40 (c) The attorney general or the appropriate prosecuting attorney may
41 prosecute any violations of this act.
1 (d) Prosecution for violation of this act must be commenced within two
2 (2) years after the date on which the violation occurred.
3 (e) Venue for prosecution under the provisions of this chapter shall be
4 in the county of residence of the defendant if the defendant is a resident of
5 the state of Idaho, otherwise venue shall be in Ada county.
6 SECTION 3. An emergency existing therefor, which emergency is hereby
7 declared to exist, this act shall be in full force and effect on and after its
8 passage and approval.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
This legislation will make it clear that expenditures of public
funds cannot be used to support or oppose political candidates or
ballot measures. The legislation would allow a governmental
agency, when authorized by its enabling statute, to publicize an
election with public money so long as both the pro and con sides
of the measure were provided to the voters. This is the same
type of procedure that the Secretary of State employs in
advertising initiatives and constitutional amendments.
There would be no fiscal impact on the state. The legislation
would likely result in a saving of funds for some local
Name: Rep. Jim Clark
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE/FISCAL NOTE H 196