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Brown Signs Political Reform Bill

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Sacramento, CA – Governor Jerry Brown signs a bill that gives more teeth to the Political Reform Act (PRA) of 1974.

Today, Brown signed AB800 into law.  It gives the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) greater enforcement authority and the ability to audit campaign funds before elections.

Assemblyman Rich Gordon (Menlo Park) authored the bill.  Gordon says the legislation stems from an incident in the 2012 November elections, when $11 million was secretly funnelled from unidentified out-of-state non-profits to influence California voters on pending ballot measures.  That influence was done by media ads.  Also, one of those measures was the Governor’s tax initiative, Proposition 30.  AB800 enables the FPPC to conduct immediate audits and reviews of political campaigns that are suspected of illegal activities.  In addition, allows the commission to get the word out to the public about who is paying for the media ads.

“It is important for the public to know who is behind campaigns, and to get the information before the election, when it matters,” said FPPC Executive Director Erin Peth. “This bill gives the FPPC strong tools to compel disclosure of those who are funding campaigns.”

The new law will be in effect in time for the November elections.

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