Follow our best practices and use the checklist to keep in compliance during the post-election period.
The candidate, treasurer, and committee are responsible for responding to all CFB notices during the post-election period and will be held jointly and severally liable for any penalties related to violations of the Campaign Finance Act or CFB Rules. All post-election notices from the CFB will be posted to your C-Access account.
Remember to keep your contact information up-to-date using the CFB’s Change of Contact Information form.
Post-Election Checklist & Best Practices
- Document and promptly pay outstanding liabilities and enter each transaction in C-SMART. If you have not yet been billed for goods and/or services received for the election, be proactive. Obtain bills, receipts, wage records, contracts, and any other documents you are missing. Document all unpaid liabilities and reports all bills and bill payments when you file your next disclosure statement.
- Have your vendors complete a Subcontractor Disclosure form if they paid an individual subcontractor over $5,000 during the course of your campaign. The form must include the name and address of the subcontractor, a description of the goods and/or services provided, and the total cost of the subcontracted services. You must enter the details in C-SMART and submit the disclosure as part of your post-election filing.
- Remove all campaign posters and signs from city property (see New York City Administrative Code §10-119). If you receive notices of violation, you must disclose the amount of the fines in your next disclosure statement.
- File all post-election disclosure statements. C-SMART may be used to file the semi-annual disclosure statements with the NYS Board of Elections until the termination of your committee.
- Close your campaign office(s) and wind down all operations within 30 days of Election Day. This includes terminating your lease agreement and cancelling all utility services (phone services, internet provider and web hosting, electricity, etc.). Sell your campaign’s durable goods (i.e., office furniture and equipment) and deposit the proceeds into your committee’s bank account. Be sure to document each sale and include documentation of the fair market value of each item. Enter the transaction as an “Other Receipt” in C-SMART.
- Close your committee’s banks account if you have paid all liabilities, reconciled all activity with the CFB and NYS BOE, and do not have remaining funds. Prior to closing the bank account, make sure to obtain all bank records (e.g., bank statements, fronts and backs of cancelled checks, and deposit slips). If you accrue bank fees while your account remains open, you may be held responsible for a negative balance. If there is any money left in your account(s) and you received public funds, your bank balance is considered public money and must be returned to the CFB (up to the amount of public funds received). Send a check payable to the “New York City Election Campaign Finance Fund” to the CFB. Note: Once your final bank balance is sent, it cannot be returned.
- Organize and keep originals of all your campaign documentation. Use the campaign documentation labels — they were created for responding to the post-election audit. The NYS BOE requires you to maintain records for 6 years after the election. Under rare circumstances, the CFB may request originals.
- Create a plan for maintaining and safeguarding all committee records, including passwords for C-Access, your C-SMART encryption key, and your NYS BOE Filer ID and pin number.
- Monitor C-Access throughout the post-election. Respond to all requests and notices from the CFB. Ensure that you are in touch with your treasurer or any other campaign staffer responsible for campaign finance compliance. When submitting copies of your campaign documentation to the CFB, make sure each item is legible and labeled clearly with the disclosure statement number and C-SMART transaction.
- Ensure the candidate, treasurer, and committee’s contact information you have on file with the CFB are current. You must notify the CFB in writing using the Change of Contact Information form if there are any changes of address or location of records.
If your campaign received public funds, you are permitted to make limited post-election expenditures to wind down your campaign and respond to the CFB’s post-election audit.
Permitted post-election expenditures include:
- payment of rent and outstanding utility bills;
- payment of taxes and other reasonable expenses for compliance with applicable tax laws;
- payment of interest on loans;
- reasonable payment of staff salaries;
- reasonable moving expenses related to closing the campaign office;
- thank you notes to contributors, staff, and volunteers;
- a post-election event for staff, volunteers, and/or supporters held within 30 days of the election;
- a holiday card mailing to contributors, campaign volunteers, and staff;
Prohibited post-election expenditures include:
- post-election mailings other than those mentioned above;
- contributions to other campaigns, organizations, or clubs;
- bonuses or gifts to staff or volunteers (unless previously agreed upon in a contract signed at the time of hiring);
- computer hardware, software, or other technology;
- spending for transition and inaugural activities
You must maintain contemporaneous, detailed documentation of post-election expenditures and submit these documents to the CFB upon request. In addition, all post-election expenditures must be recorded in C-SMART, as you still have filing obligations to the NYS BOE.
Post-Election Public Funds
If you were a participant of the Campaign Finance Program and did not receive the maximum amount of public funds, you may be eligible to receive a post-election public funds payment. Not every campaign will qualify; post-election payments depend on more factors than pre-election payments. Only campaigns meeting all of the criteria will be considered for a post-election public funds payment.
Note: If you were not running for an open seat and did not submit an acceptable Certified Statement of Need for Additional Public Funds, the public funds you were able to receive were capped at 25% of the maximum allowable. The cap stands towards the potential post-election public funds payment.
- be in compliance,
- meet the two-part threshold,
- be on the ballot and opposed by another candidate on the ballot.
- meet the pre-election eligibility criteria, and
- have outstanding liabilities to vendors that are continuing to seek payment that have been reported and documented properly,
- have calculated outstanding liabilities, taking into account your final bank balance,
- have qualified expenditures equal to, or greater than, the total of pre- and post-election public funds payments, or
- have remaining valid matching claims on which public funds were not paid.*
Note: If you received public funds prior to the election, you must first document all qualified expenditures up to the amount of public funds you received.
* Your campaign may continue to raise matchable contributions until December 31 of the election year, adhering to all limits and requirements for the election cycle. These contributions must be entered into C-SMART, claimed for match, and reported timely in the applicable disclosure statement.
Your Draft Audit Report will contain information related to any possible payment or repayment. You must satisfactorily resolve all findings in the Draft Audit Report before receiving a post-election payment. You may be eligible to receive a public funds payment amount up to the applicable cap if the CFB determines your campaign has met all of the required criteria.