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Elections : FinanceHowTo

Campaign Finance How-To 

all candidates for local elective offices are subject to the provisions of the Michigan Campaign Finance Act [P.A. 388 of 1976].
  • As soon as an individual becomes a “candidate”, he/she has 10 calendar days to form a Candidate Committee. 
  • After the Committee’s formation date, the candidate has an additional 10 calendar days to register the committee by filing a Statement of Organization. 
A person becomes a candidate under the Campaign Finance Act on the date he/she: 
  • Files a nominating petition, filing fee or an affidavit of identity.
  • Receives a contribution or makes an expenditure or gives consent to someone else to receive or expend funds to bring about the individual’s nomination or election to an elective office.
  • Is nominated for an elective office by a political party caucus or convention.

Where to File Campaign Finance Documents 

A candidate for a county, city, township, village, school or other local elective office is required to file Statement of Organization and other Campaign Finance documents with the County Clerk, 113 Chestnut Street, Allegan, MI  49010.  Phone 269.673-0450.
A candidate for state elective office or a judicial office is required to file Statement of Organization and other Campaign Finance documents with the Bureau of Elections through the MERTS plus program on the Secretary of State, Bureau of Elections website.

Waiver of Reporting 

Candidates who do not expect to receive or expend $1,000 in an election may check box #10 on the Statement of Organization to waive the requirement to file periodic campaign financial reports.  Being granted a waiver does NOT exempt the candidate from any provisions of the act other than the reporting provision.
All candidates who receive or expend ANY funds to seek public office must keep careful records of donations received and/or records of money spent-whether or not they have been granted a reporting waiver.
The candidate’s campaign finance bank account should show all receipts and expenditures on behalf of the campaign.