May 26, 1999
Diane Simmons, Treasurer
Mayor Williams Citizen-Service
2475 Virginia Avenue,
Dear Ms. Simmons:
to your request for an opinion concerning the financial transactions relative
to the establishment of the Mayor Williams Citizen-Service
You state that a total of $150,250.00 was transferred from the Williams
for Mayor campaign account(s) to the MWCSP account. You further
state that MWCSP established a checking account into which $40,000.00
was deposited. In addition, you advise that three (3) CD accounts
[earmarked for MWCSP] were established, into which $38,700.00, 36,750.00
and 34,800.00 were deposited respectively. Your filings in this
Office confirm your statements. You state that these deposits, and
their accrued interest, will be used to fund MWCSP in subsequent years.
DC Code §
1-1443(a) provides that “[t]he Mayor, the Chairman of the Council, and
each member of the Council may finance the operation of such programs
[citizen-service] with contributions from persons, provided, that contributions
received . . . do not exceed an aggregate amount of $40,000 in any
1 calendar year.”(emphasis added).
DC Code § 1-1472(b) states,
“. . . an individual elected to an office under this chapter and authorized
to establish a program of constituent services under § 1-1443 shall
be authorized to transfer any surplus, residue, or unexpended campaign
funds to his or her program of constituent services.” However, OCF
Regulations at 3
DCM.R. §3014.6 state, “[t]he amount of any transfer
of surplus, residue, or unexpended campaign funds by the elected official
shall not be subject to the forty thousand dollars ($40,000) contribution
limitation . . .”. This Regulation does not restrict the amount
of funds transferred from a former campaign account to a citizen-service
DC Code § 1-1443(d), the record keeping requirements of the
Campaign Finance Act apply to constituent services programs. In
DC Code § 1-1413(a) requires each political committee
or candidate to designate 1 or more national banks located in the District
of Columbia as campaign depositories and to maintain a checking account
or accounts at same.
Based on your representations, as applied to the relevant law and regulations,
it is the opinion of the Office of Campaign Finance that MWCSP was established
within the statutory strictures and their implementing guidelines.
You are cautioned, however, to ensure that expenditures from the fund
do not exceed $40,000 in any 1 calendar year.
DC Code § 1-1443(a).