TITLE 1. ADMINISTRATION

PART 2. TEXAS ETHICS COMMISSION

CHAPTER 18. GENERAL RULES CONCERNING REPORTS

1 TAC §18.21

The Texas Ethics Commission (the Commission) adopts an amendment to Texas Ethics Commission Rules §18.21, regarding consideration of a waiver request of a late fine, of Chapter 18, of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code. The amendment is adopted without changes to the proposed text as published in the August 30, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 4579) and will not be republished.

Section 571.1731, Gov't Code, provides the Commission's authority to waive or reduce a fine for a late report in response to a filer's request submitted as an affidavit that states the filer's reasons for requesting a waiver or reduction. Current Commission rule §18.21 requires a filer to have filed the report at issue before the Commission will consider a request to waive or reduce a late fine for the report. The amendment would also prohibit the Commission from considering a waiver request if a court action has been filed to collect a late fine assessed regarding the report, which is also consistent with the Commission's historical practice.

When a late fine is assessed against a filer, the Commission provides at least three separate notices to the filer and informs the filer that the consequences for not addressing the fine include referral to the Office of the Attorney General ("OAG") for collection. The filing of a lawsuit can be expensive and the OAG incurs court costs and must pay its staff for the time necessary to handle the lawsuit. The rule, as amended, encourages filers to timely address late fines before costly litigation ensues.

No public comments were received on this new rule.

The amended rule is adopted under Texas Government Code, Section 571.062, which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code.

The amendment affects Section 571.1731 of the Government Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904581

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: December 26, 2019

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


1 TAC §18.31

The Texas Ethics Commission (the Commission) adopts an amendment to Texas Ethics Commission Rules §18.31, regarding Adjustments to Reporting Thresholds, of Chapter 18 of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code. The amendment is adopted without changes to the proposed text as published in the August 30, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 4580) and will not be republished.

Section 571.064(b) of the Government Code requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds upward to the nearest multiple of $10 in accordance with the percentage increase for the previous year in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the United States Department of Labor. The laws under the Commission's authority that include reporting thresholds are Title 15 of the Election Code (campaign finance law), Chapter 305 of the Government Code (lobby law), Chapter 572 of the Government Code (personal financial statements), Chapters 302 and 303 of the Government Code (speaker election, governor for a day, and speaker's reunion day ceremony reports), and Section 2155.003 of the Government Code (reporting requirements applicable to the comptroller).

The Commission adopted Texas Ethics Commission Rule §18.31 in March 2019 to adjust numerous reporting thresholds in these statutes. The thresholds contained in these statutes are also duplicated in numerous Commission rules and therefore those rules must be similarly adjusted so they are consistent with the adjustments adopted in March 2019. The changes are therefore not substantive changes to the thresholds but are intended as "clean-up" amendments. These amended rules are intended to be effective on January 1, 2020, to apply to contributions and expenditures that occur on or after that date.

No public comments were received on this new rule.

The amendment is adopted under Texas Government Code Section 571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, and Texas Government Code Section 571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rule affects Title 15 of the Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904582

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


CHAPTER 20. REPORTING POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES

The Texas Ethics Commission (the Commission) adopts amendments to Texas Ethics Commission Rules §20.62, regarding Reporting Staff Reimbursement, and §20.65, regarding Reporting No Activity, of Chapter 20, Subchapter B, of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code; §20.217, regarding Modified Reporting, §20.219, regarding Content of Candidate's Sworn Report of Contributions and Expenditures, §20.220, regarding Additional Disclosure for the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, and §20.221, regarding Special Pre-Election Report by Certain Candidates, of Chapter 20, Subchapter C, of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code; §20.275, regarding Exception from Filing Requirement for Certain Local Officeholders of Chapter 20, Subchapter D, of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code; §20.301, regarding Thresholds for Campaign Treasurer Appointment, §20.303, regarding Appointment of Campaign Treasurer, §20.313, regarding Converting to a General-Purpose Committee, §20.329, regarding Modified Reporting, §20.331, regarding Contents of Specific-Purpose Committee Sworn Report of Contributions and Expenditures, §20.333, regarding Special Pre-Election Report by Certain Specific-Purpose Committees, of Chapter 20, Subchapter E of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code; §20.401, regarding Thresholds for Appointment of Campaign Treasurer by a General-Purpose Committee, §20.405, regarding Campaign Treasurer Appointment for a General-Purpose Political Committee, §20.431, regarding Monthly Reporting, §20.433, regarding Contents of General-Purpose Committee Sworn Report of Contributions and Expenditures, §20.434, regarding Alternate Reporting Requirements for General-Purpose Committees, and §20.435, regarding Special Pre-Election Reports by Certain General-Purpose Committees, of Chapter 20, Subchapter F of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code; §20.553, regarding County Executive Committee Accepting Contributions or Making Expenditures Totaling $25,000 or Less, and §20.555, regarding County Executive Committee Accepting Contributions or Making Expenditures That Exceed $25,000, of Chapter 20, Subchapter I of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code. The amendments are adopted without changes to the proposed text as published in the August 30, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 4580) and will not be republished.

Section 571.064(b) of the Government Code requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds upward to the nearest multiple of $10 in accordance with the percentage increase for the previous year in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the United States Department of Labor. The laws under the Commission's authority that include reporting thresholds are Title 15 of the Election Code (campaign finance law), Chapter 305 of the Government Code (lobby law), Chapter 572 of the Government Code (personal financial statements), Chapters 302 and 303 of the Government Code (speaker election, governor for a day, and speaker's reunion day ceremony reports), and section 2155.003 of the Government Code (reporting requirements applicable to the comptroller).

The Commission adopted Texas Ethics Commission §18.31 in March 2019 to adjust numerous reporting thresholds in these statutes. The thresholds contained in these statutes are also duplicated in numerous Commission rules and therefore those rules must be similarly adjusted so they are consistent with the adjustments adopted in March 2019. The changes are therefore not substantive changes to the thresholds, but are intended as "clean-up" amendments. These amended rules are intended to be effective on January 1, 2020, to apply to contributions and expenditures that occur on or after that date.

The only change from the published rules is to correct a typographical error in §20.279(21)(D), which amended from $100 to $130 the threshold up to which political expenditures are not required to be itemized in a campaign finance report filed by an officeholder. The amended amount should have been $180, which matches the amended threshold that applies to reports filed by a candidate under §20.219(24)(D). The statute that requires this information to be disclosed for both candidates and officeholders is Section 254.031 of the Election Code, and thus the amount for both candidates and officeholders must be identical. The threshold was already changed in the amendments to §18.31, which goes into effect on 1-1-20. The amendment to §20.279 is adopted with changes to the proposed text as published in the August 30, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 4580), as noted above. The rule will be republished.

No public comments were received on these amendments.

SUBCHAPTER B. GENERAL REPORTING RULES

1 TAC §20.62, §20.65

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code Section 571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, and Texas Government Code Section 571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rules affect Title 15 of the Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904583

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


SUBCHAPTER C. REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR A CANDIDATE

1 TAC §§20.217, 20.219 - 20.221

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code §571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, Texas Government Code §571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute; and Texas Government Code §2155.003, which requires the Commission to adopt rules to implement that section.

The amended rules affect Title 15 of the Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904584

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


SUBCHAPTER D. REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR AN OFFICEHOLDER WHO DOES NOT HAVE A CAMPAIGN TREASURER APPOINTMENT ON FILE

1 TAC §20.275, §20.279

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code §571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, and Texas Government Code §571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rules affect Title 15 of the Election Code.

§20.279.Contents of Officeholder's Sworn Report of Contributions and Expenditures.

An officeholder's semiannual report of contributions and expenditures required by this subchapter must cover reportable activity during the reporting period and must include the following information:

(1) the officeholder's full name;

(2) the officeholder's address;

(3) the office held by the officeholder;

(4) for each political committee from which the officeholder received notice under §20.319 of this title (relating to Notice to Candidate or Officeholder) or §20.421 of this title (relating to Notice to Candidate or Officeholder):

(A) the committee's full name;

(B) the committee's address;

(C) identification of the political committee as a general-purpose or a specific-purpose committee;

(D) the full name of the committee's campaign treasurer; and

(E) the address of the committee's campaign treasurer;

(5) on a separate page, the following information for each expenditure from political contributions made to a business in which the officeholder has a participating interest of more than 10%, holds a position on the governing body of the business, or serves as an officer of the business:

(A) the full name of the business to which the expenditure was made;

(B) the address of the business to which the expenditure was made;

(C) the date of the expenditure;

(D) the purpose of the expenditure; and

(E) the amount of the expenditure;

(6) for each person from whom the officeholder accepted a political contribution (other than a pledge, loan, or a guarantee of a loan) of more than $90 in value or political contributions (other than pledges, loans, or guarantees of loans) that total more than $90 in value:

(A) the full name of the person making the contribution;

(B) the address of the person making the contribution;

(C) the total amount of contributions;

(D) the date each contribution was accepted; and

(E) a description of any in-kind contribution;

(7) for each person from whom the officeholder accepted a pledge or pledges to provide more than $90 in money or goods or services worth more than $90:

(A) the full name of the person making the pledge;

(B) the address of the person making the pledge;

(C) the amount of each pledge;

(D) the date each pledge was accepted; and

(E) a description of any goods or services pledged;

(8) the total of all pledges accepted during the period for $90 and less from a person, except those reported under paragraph (7) of this section;

(9) for each person making a loan or loans to the officeholder for officeholder purposes, if the total amount loaned by the person during the period is more than $90:

(A) the full name of the person or financial institution making the loan;

(B) the address of the person or financial institution making the loan;

(C) the amount of the loan;

(D) the date of the loan;

(E) the interest rate;

(F) the maturity date;

(G) the collateral for the loan, if any; and

(H) if the loan has guarantors:

(i) the full name of each guarantor;

(ii) the address of each guarantor;

(iii) the principal occupation of each guarantor;

(iv) the name of the employer of each guarantor; and

(v) the amount guaranteed by each guarantor;

(10) the total amount of loans accepted during the period for $90 and less from persons other than financial institutions engaged in the business of making loans for more than one year, except those reported under paragraph (9) of this section;

(11) for political expenditures made during the reporting period that total more than $180 to a single payee, other than expenditures reported under paragraph (5) of this section:

(A) the full name of the person to whom each expenditure was made;

(B) the address of the person to whom the expenditure was made;

(C) the date of the expenditure;

(D) the purpose of the expenditure; and

(E) the amount of the expenditure;

(12) for each political expenditure of any amount made out of personal funds for which reimbursement from political contributions is intended:

(A) the full name of the person to whom each expenditure was made;

(B) the address of the person to whom the expenditure was made;

(C) the date of each expenditure;

(D) the purpose of the expenditure;

(E) a declaration that the expenditure was made from personal funds;

(F) a declaration that reimbursement from political contributions is intended; and

(G) the amount of the expenditure;

(13) for each non-political expenditure made from political contributions, other than expenditures reported under paragraph (5) of this section:

(A) the date of each expenditure;

(B) the full name of the person to whom the expenditure was made;

(C) the address of the person to whom the expenditure was made;

(D) the purpose of the expenditure; and

(E) the amount of the expenditure;

(14) for each candidate or other officeholder who benefits from a direct campaign expenditure made by the officeholder during the reporting period:

(A) the name of the candidate or officeholder; and

(B) the office sought or held by the candidate or officeholder;

(15) for each political contribution from an out-of-state political committee, the information required by §22.7 of this title (relating to Contribution from Out-of-State Committee);

(16) any credit, interest, rebate, refund, reimbursement, or return of a deposit fee resulting from the use of a political contribution or an asset purchased with a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $130;

(17) any proceeds of the sale of an asset purchased with a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $130;

(18) any other gain from a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $130;

(19) any investment purchased with a political contribution that is received during the reporting period and the amount of which exceeds $130;

(20) the full name and address of each person from whom an amount described by paragraph (16), (17), (18), or (19) of this section is received, the date the amount is received, and the purpose for which the amount is received;

(21) the following total amounts:

(A) the total principal amount of all outstanding loans as of the last day of the reporting period;

(B) the total amount or an itemized listing of political contributions (other than pledges, loans, or guarantees of loans) of $90 and less;

(C) the total amount of all political contributions (other than pledges, loans, or guarantees of loans);

(D) the total amount or an itemized listing of the political expenditures of $180 and less; and

(E) the total amount of all political expenditures; and

(22) an affidavit, executed by the officeholder, stating: "I swear, or affirm, that the accompanying report is true and correct and includes all information required to be reported by me under Title 15, Election Code."

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904585

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


SUBCHAPTER E. REPORTS BY A SPECIFIC-PURPOSE COMMITTEE

1 TAC §§20.301, 20.303, 20.313, 20.329, 20.331, 20.333

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code §571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, and Texas Government Code §571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rules affect Title 15 of the Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904587

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


SUBCHAPTER F. REPORTING REQUIREMENT FOR A GENERAL PURPOSE COMMITTEE

1 TAC §§20.401, 20.405, 20.431, 20.433 - 20.435

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code §571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, and Texas Government Code §571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rules affect Title 15 of the Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904588

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


SUBCHAPTER I. RULES APPLICABLE TO A POLITICAL PARTY'S COUNTY EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

1 TAC §20.553, §20.555

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code §571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, and Texas Government Code §571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rules affect Title 15 of the Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904589

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


CHAPTER 22. RESTRICTIONS ON CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES

1 TAC §§22.1, 22.6, 22.7

The Texas Ethics Commission (the Commission) adopts amendments to Texas Ethics Commission Rules §22.1, regarding Certain Campaign Treasurer Appointments Required before Political Activity Begins, §22.6, regarding Reporting Direct Campaign Expenditures, and §22.7, regarding Contribution from Out-of-State Committee, of Chapter 22 of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code. The amendments are adopted without changes to the proposed text as published in the August 30, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 4593) and will not be republished.

Section 571.064(b) of the Government Code requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds upward to the nearest multiple of $10 in accordance with the percentage increase for the previous year in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the United States Department of Labor. The laws under the Commission's authority that include reporting thresholds are Title 15 of the Election Code (campaign finance law), Chapter 305 of the Government Code (lobby law), Chapter 572 of the Government Code (personal financial statements), Chapters 302 and 303 of the Government Code (speaker election, governor for a day, and speaker's reunion day ceremony reports), and Section 2155.003 of the Government Code (reporting requirements applicable to the comptroller).

The Commission adopted Texas Ethics Commission Rule §18.31 in March 2019 to adjust numerous reporting thresholds in these statutes. The thresholds contained in these statutes are also duplicated in numerous Commission rules and therefore those rules must be similarly adjusted so they are consistent with the adjustments adopted in March 2019. The changes are therefore not substantive changes to the thresholds but are intended as "clean-up" amendments. These amended rules are intended to be effective on January 1, 2020, to apply to contributions and expenditures that occur on or after that date.

No public comments were received on these new rules.

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code Section 571.062, which authorizes the Commission to adopt rules to administer Title 15 of the Election Code, and Texas Government Code Section 571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rules affect Title 15 of the Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904590

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


CHAPTER 34. REGULATION OF LOBBYISTS

SUBCHAPTER B. REGISTRATION REQUIRED

1 TAC §34.41, §34.43

The Texas Ethics Commission (the Commission) adopts amendments to Texas Ethics Commission Rules §34.41, regarding Expenditure Threshold, and §34.43, regarding Compensation and Reimbursement Threshold, of Chapter 34, Subchapter B, of Title 1, Part 2, of the Texas Administrative Code. The amendments are adopted without changes to the proposed text as published in the August 30, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 4595) and will not be republished.

Section 571.064(b) of the Government Code requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds upward to the nearest multiple of $10 in accordance with the percentage increase for the previous year in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the United States Department of Labor. The laws under the Commission's authority that include reporting thresholds are Title 15 of the Election Code (campaign finance law), Chapter 305 of the Government Code (lobby law), Chapter 572 of the Government Code (personal financial statements), Chapters 302 and 303 of the Government Code (speaker election, governor for a day, and speaker's reunion day ceremony reports), and Section 2155.003 of the Government Code (reporting requirements applicable to the comptroller).

The Commission adopted Texas Ethics Commission Rule §18.31 in March 2019 to adjust numerous reporting thresholds in these statutes. The thresholds contained in these statutes are also duplicated in numerous Commission rules, as referenced above, and therefore those rules must be similarly adjusted so they are consistent with the adjustments adopted in March 2019. The changes are therefore not substantive changes to the thresholds, but are intended as "clean-up" amendments. These amended rules are intended to be effective on January 1, 2020, to apply to lobby activity that occurs on or after that date.

No public comments were received on these amended rules.

The amendments are adopted under Texas Government Code Section 571.062, which authorizes the commission to adopt rules to administer Chapter 305 of the Election Code; Texas Government Code Section 305.003, which authorizes the Commission to determine by rule the amount of expenditures made or compensation received over which a person is required to register as a lobbyist; and Texas Government Code Section 571.064, which requires the Commission to annually adjust reporting thresholds in accordance with that statute.

The amended rules affect Chapter 305 of the Government Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 6, 2019.

TRD-201904591

Ian Steusloff

General Counsel

Texas Ethics Commission

Effective date: January 1, 2020

Proposal publication date: August 30, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5800


PART 4. OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE

CHAPTER 81. ELECTIONS

SUBCHAPTER F. PRIMARY ELECTIONS

1 TAC §§81.101, 81.104, 81.107, 81.112, 81.120, 81.123, 81.130

The Office of the Secretary of State (SOS) adopts amendments to Chapter 81, Subchapter F, §§81.101, 81.104, 81.107, 81.112, 81.120, 81.123, and 81.130, concerning the financing of the 2020 primary and joint primary elections. The SOS adopts the amendments to §§81.104, 81.107, 81.120, 81.123, and 81.130 without changes to the proposed text as published in the November 8, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 6639). The rules will not be republished.

The SOS adopts the amendment to §81.112 with one change in response to a public comment received on November 8, 2019. The commenter noted that in the proposed text published in the November 8, 2019, issue of the Texas Register, there was a typographical error on page 6642, first column, eighth line from the bottom, where the proposed text referred to "he county's website." The adopted rule revises this provision to reference "the county's website" in accordance with the SOS's intent. The SOS also adopts the amendment to §81.101 with change due to a typographical error in subsection (e)(2). The rules will be republished.

The SOS did not receive any other comments on the proposed rules.

Statutory Authority: These amendments are adopted under Texas Election Code §31.003, which provides the SOS with the authority to obtain and maintain uniformity in the application, operation, and interpretation of provisions in the Texas Election Code and other election laws. Texas Election Code §31.003 also allows the SOS, in performing such duties, to prepare detailed and comprehensive written directives and instructions relating to and based on such laws. The rule changes are also adopted under Texas Election Code §173.006, which authorizes the SOS to adopt rules consistent with the Texas Election Code that facilitate the holding of primary elections within the amount appropriated by the legislature for that purpose. In addition, other sections within Chapters 172 and 173 of the Texas Election Code, including §§172.029, 172.117, and 172.122, provide the SOS with rulemaking authority by their terms.

Cross-Reference to Statute: No other sections are affected by these amendments.

§81.101.Primary and Runoff Election Cost Reporting; Receipt of State Funds.

(a) Definitions. The following words and terms, when used in this section, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

(1) SOS--Office of the Secretary of State.

(2) Primary--An election held by a political party under Chapter 172 of the Texas Election Code to select its nominees for public office, and, unless the context indicates otherwise, the term includes a presidential primary election.

(3) Runoff--An election held to determine the nomination if no candidate for nomination to a particular office receives the vote required for nomination in the general primary election.

(4) County election officer--County election administrator, county clerk, or county tax assessor-collector, depending on the county, responsible for election duties in the county.

(5) Vendor--Any company with a voting system certified for use in Texas by the SOS.

(b) This subchapter applies to the use and management of all primary funds.

(c) Approval by the Secretary of State (SOS) of a primary cost estimate does not relieve the recipient of primary funds including, but not limited to, the state chair of a political party, the county chair of a political party, the county election officer, or a voting system vendor, of their responsibility to comply with administrative rules issued by the SOS, or with any statute governing the use of primary funds.

(d) The SOS shall provide a primary cost estimate for each county political party broken into three categories, as applicable:

(1) The SOS will provide an estimate for each expense incurred by the county chair based on 75% of the final approved "non-contracted" costs less non-state appropriated financing sources (e.g., filing fees) for the most recent comparable election for which data is available as determined by the SOS. In order to receive the primary estimate payment, the chair must submit to the SOS a primary cost estimate via the online primary finance system prescribed by the SOS. If data is not available to create a pre-populated cost estimate or if the chair wishes to amend the pre-populated estimate, the chair may enter the appropriate data in the SOS online primary finance system.

(2) The SOS will provide an estimate for each expense incurred by the county election officer based on 75% of the final approved "contracted" costs for the most recent comparable election for which data is available as determined by the SOS. In order to receive the primary estimate payment, the county election officer must submit to the SOS a primary cost estimate via the online primary finance system prescribed by the SOS. If data is not available to create a pre-populated cost estimate or if the county election officer wishes to amend the pre-populated estimate, the county election officer may enter the appropriate data in the SOS online primary finance system.

(3) Pursuant to §173.0833 of the Texas Election Code, vendors that provide services and materials for use in a primary election shall bill the SOS directly if the vendor opts to receive an estimate payment. The submission shall comply with the following requirements:

(A) In October preceding the March primary election, vendors shall submit, in the electronic format prescribed by the SOS, data for each county primary election for which the vendor is providing services or materials.

(B) Only expenses that are billable to the primary fund may be included. Expenses including, but not limited to, early voting kits and supplies, "I Voted" stickers, and party convention supplies, must appear on a separate invoice billed to the county election officer or the party, as appropriate.

(C) If a cost is to be split between both parties, the split costs must be reported separately.

(D) The vendor must identify whether the county chair or the county election officer is ordering the service. The county chair earns five (5) percent calculated against the cost of the services ordered by the chair, which is paid out by the SOS to the county chair as part of the final cost report, and the county election officer earns ten (10) percent of the cost of the services ordered by the county election officer, which is included in the estimate and final payments issued by SOS.

(E) The SOS will not make estimates available to the county chairs or the county election officers until the SOS receives the vendor submission described in this section.

(e) If a runoff election is conducted, the estimate payments will be calculated and paid following the same process prescribed in subsection (d) of this section with the following exceptions:

(1) Filing fees are not factored into the calculation.

(2) The vendor must provide the estimated runoff costs in the electronic format prescribed by the SOS within five (5) days after the date of the canvass of the primary election results.

(f) After the primary or runoff election, as applicable, the actual expenditures must be reported to SOS as follows:

(1) The vendors must submit data in the electronic format prescribed by the SOS that identifies the final costs and includes all applicable fields prescribed by the SOS.

(A) Only expenses that are billable to the primary fund may be included. Expenses including, but not limited to, early voting kits and supplies, "I Voted Stickers", and party convention supplies, must appear on a separate invoice billed to the county election officer or the party, as appropriate.

(B) If a cost is to be split between both parties, the split costs must be reported separately.

(C) The vendor must identify whether the county chair or the county election officer is ordering the service. The county chair earns five (5) percent calculated against the cost of the services ordered by the chair, and the county election officer earns ten (10) percent of the cost of the services ordered by the county election officer.

(D) The SOS will not make final payments to the county chairs or the county election officers until the SOS receives the vendor submission described in this section.

(2) The county chair and the county election officer, if an election service contract is executed between the county executive committee and the county election officer, must submit actual expenditures in the electronic format prescribed by the SOS.

(A) Costs incurred by the county chair shall be reported to the SOS by the county chair. Those costs will be calculated consistent with §81.119 of this chapter (relating to County Chair's Compensation).

(B) Costs incurred by the county election officer shall be reported to the SOS by the county election officer. Those costs will be calculated consistent with §81.131 of this chapter (relating to Contracting with the County Election Officer).

(g) Section 173.0832 of the Texas Election Code provides for direct payment from the SOS to a county election officer who conducts a primary election under an election services contract. The SOS requires all county election officers conducting election services for a primary election to receive direct payment from the SOS.

(h) Pursuant to §173.0341 of the Texas Election Code, a state chair, or the designee of a state chair, may enter into an agreement with a county chair, utilizing a form prescribed by the SOS, under which the state chair will act as a fiscal agent for the county party.

§81.112.List of Candidates and Filing Fees.

(a) Submission of information.

(1) Submission of filed application. Pursuant to §§172.029, 172.117, and 172.122 of the Texas Election Code, for each general primary election, all state and county chairs shall electronically submit information about each candidate who files with the chair an application for a place on the ballot, including an application for the office of a political party, and shall certify the returns and the final list of candidates by electronic affidavit through the electronic submission service prescribed by SOS referenced in paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(2) Method of submission. The chair shall submit candidate information through an electronic submission service prescribed by the SOS. The SOS shall maintain the submitted information in an online database, in accordance with §172.029(b) of the Texas Election Code. The SOS is not responsible for the accuracy of the information submitted by the chair; the SOS is responsible only for providing the electronic submission service, displaying the information publicly on its website, and maintaining the online database.

(3) Information required for submission. The electronic submission service will notate the types of information that must be inputted for a complete submission of candidate information. However, the chair must submit any and all information on the candidate's application for which there is an applicable entry field on the electronic submission service.

(4) Submission deadline. A chair shall submit a candidate's information and a notation of each candidate's status not later than 24 hours after the chair completes the review of the candidate's application, in accordance with §172.029 of the Texas Election Code. By not later than the 8th day after the regular filing deadline, the chair shall submit a candidate's information and a notation concerning the candidate's status for all candidates who filed, in accordance with §172.029 of the Texas Election Code. The county chair will not be able to make modifications to the submitted information or notations on or after the 9th day after the regular filing deadline. If modifications to a candidate's information or notation are required on or after the 9th day after the regular filing deadline, such changes must be made by the state chair after notifying the SOS.

(5) Submission of nominee by executive committee. If a candidate is nominated by the appropriate executive committee for a place on the general election ballot in accordance with §145.036 or §202.006 of the Texas Election Code, the appropriate county chair shall notify the state chair who shall submit the candidate's information and notation through the electronic submission service prescribed by the SOS, in accordance with §172.029 of the Texas Election Code. The submission of the candidate's information and notation shall be completed not later than 5 p.m. on the 71st day before general election day to allow for the preparation of the general election ballot by the authority printing the ballots.

(6) Time for notations. For candidates not updated automatically after the canvass results are recorded in the electronic submission service prescribed by the SOS, the county chair will be able to update notations to describe the status of each candidate after the canvass. If modification to the notation is needed, the appropriate chair will update the candidate information to reflect the candidate's status from the list of notations available. The notations must be complete and accurate not later than 5 p.m. on the 71st day before general election day to allow for the preparation of the general election ballot by the authority printing the ballots.

(b) Notification of filing.

(1) County chair: delivery of candidate list. Upon submission of information for all candidates who filed and whose applications have been reviewed and accepted for a place on the ballot, the county chair shall notify the applicable county election officer that candidate information has been submitted for all candidates, in accordance with §172.029 of the Texas Election Code. Notification may be sent by email, regular mail, or personal delivery, so long as it is delivered by no later than the 9th day after the regular filing deadline.

(2) State chair: notification of submission. Upon submission of information for all candidates who filed and whose applications have been reviewed and accepted for a place on the ballot, the state chair shall notify the applicable county chairs that candidate information has been submitted for all candidates, in accordance with §172.028 and §172.029 of the Texas Election Code. Notification may be sent by email, regular mail, or personal delivery, so long as it is delivered by no later than the ninth day after the regular filing deadline.

(3) Extended Filing Notification. Pursuant to §172.055 of the Texas Election Code, the applicable filing authority shall provide the necessary extended filing notifications, including sending the notice to post on the county's website or the Secretary of State's website, as applicable. Pursuant to §172.056(b) of the Texas Election Code, for races in which the state chair is the filing authority, the state chair shall notify the applicable county chairs and the applicable county election officers that a candidate filed an application that complied with the applicable requirements during the extended filing period, and the candidate information has been submitted in accordance with §172.029 of the Texas Election Code. For races in which the county chair is the filing authority, the county chair shall notify the applicable state chair and the applicable county election officer that a candidate filed an application that complied with the applicable requirements during the extended filing period, and the candidate information has been submitted in accordance with §172.029 of the Texas Election Code. Notification shall be made by email, regular mail, or personal delivery.

(4) Court order. If a court orders a candidate's name to be placed on the ballot or removed from the ballot, the chair shall immediately notify the state chair.

(c) Public display and failure to submit.

(1) Public display of information. The SOS will publicly display on its website a limited portion of the information submitted by the chair. For candidates for public office, the SOS will publicly display, via its website, the candidate's name, any public mailing address and any electronic mail address at which the candidate receives correspondence relating to the candidate's campaign provided by the candidate pursuant to §141.031(a)(4)(M) of the Texas Election Code, and office sought, along with the office's corresponding precinct, district or place. For candidates for the office of a political party, the website will publicly display the name of the chair and, if applicable, the corresponding numeric identifier.

(2) Failure to submit information. If a county chair fails to electronically submit candidate information for all candidates who filed and whose applications have been reviewed and accepted for a place on the ballot, the chair is directly responsible for delivering a certified list of all candidates to the state chair to comply with the electronic submission requirements of §172.029 of the Texas Election Code on behalf of the county chair.

(d) County executive committee. In the case of a vacancy on a county executive committee, the county chair shall submit the replacement member's name through the electronic submission service prescribed by the SOS pursuant to §171.024 of the Texas Election Code.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 9, 2019.

TRD-201904598

Adam Bitter

General Counsel

Office of the Secretary of State

Effective date: December 29, 2019

Proposal publication date: November 8, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 463-5650