Information pertaining to the funding of committees supporting or opposing the upcoming minimum wage referendum
can be found on the Commission's Election Campaign Data page.
Notes Regarding 2016 Citywide and Council District Elections
The Ethics Commission will be conducting a training for candidates and treasurers participating in the City's 2016 election cycle. The training will be held on Friday, July 17, 2015, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in the Council Committee Room on the 12th floor of the City Administration Building at 202 C Street in downtown San Diego.
Candidates may not solicit or accept contributions until June 7, 2015, one year before the 2016 primary election. This prohibition does not preclude a candidate from using his or her personal funds to pay for campaign related expenses. Refer to this fact sheet for additional information.
Contribution limits for the 2016 election cycle are as follows:
- Council District Candidates: $550 per person per election
- Citywide Candidates: $1,050 per person per election
- Political Party Contributions to City Council Candidates: $10,300 per election
- Political Party Contributions to Citywide Candidates: $20,650 per election
The Ethics Commission has prepared campaign manuals for candidates and committees that will be participating in San Diego's 2016 primary and general elections. The candidate manual is designed for candidates and their controlled committees, while the committee manual is designed for primarily formed recipient committees, general purpose recipient committees, and independent expenditure committees interested in supporting or opposing City candidates and/or City ballot measures.
- The Ethics Commission has also prepared a webinar for City candidates and treasurers. It is designed to provide basic information regarding local campaign rules, and is intended to supplement the FPPC's webinar. Both webinars can be view on the Ethics Commission's Campaign Webinars page.
Notes Regarding 2014 Council District Elections
Candidates who ran for elective City office in 2014 may no longer solicit or accept contributions. A candidate may, however, deposit his or her own personal funds into the campaign checking account to pay any outstanding expenses.
- Information regarding the obligations of candidates and committees that participated in the 2014 election cycle can be found in the Ethics Commission's 2014 candidate manual and committee manual.
Notes Regarding All City Elections
Candidates who raise or spend $1,000 or more in connection with their candidacy must create a campaign committee by filing a Form 410 Statement of Organization with the California Secretary of State (and a copy with the City Clerk).
Candidates may not accept contributions in any amount from non-individuals (other than a political party committee).
Candidates and committees that have raised at least $10,000 in contributions must file their campaign statements (e.g., Forms 460, 465, 496, 497) using the City Clerk's electronic filing system. Candidates and committees below the $10,000 threshold have a choice of filing their campaign statements in paper format or electronically.
All candidate committees must have a treasurer. A candidate may serve as his/her own treasurer, or ask a friend or relative to volunteer as the treasurer. Candidates who plan to spend more than $10,000 are strongly encouraged to retain a professional treasurer to ensure compliance with the City's laws. The majority of candidates who spend more than $10,000 will have their campaigns audited, and may be required to pay fines if the audits reveal material violations of campaign laws. Information regarding professional campaign treasurers doing business in California can be obtained from the California Political Treasurers Association.
Candidates should familiarize themselves with the Ethics Commission's Top Ten Rules for City Candidates.
Visit the Ethics Commission's Candidates and Committees page for additional information regarding campaign finance rules.