Senate Passes Campaign Finance Reform

On the heels of its passage by the Massachusetts House of Representatives last November, the Massachusetts Senate has voted to enact campaign finance reform legislation sponsored by Diana.

Under House Bill 3760, An Act relative to strengthening campaign finance reporting requirements, current campaign finance report law is extended to candidates for municipal office who file with the Office of Campaign and Political Finance. Under prior law, candidates for state or county office who failed to file campaign finance reports were prohibited from appearing on an election ballot, yet this law did not apply to municipal candidates.

“With the passage of this legislation, candidates in municipal elections who file with the Office of Campaign and Political Finance will be held to the same standards as those running in county and state elections,” said Diana. “I want to express my gratitude to, among others, Senators Barry Finegold (D-Andover), Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester), Kathleen O’Connor Ives (D-Newburyport), Jamie Eldridge (D-Acton) and Richard Moore (D-Uxbridge) for their tireless work in advancing through the legislative process a common sense bill that will bring more transparency to our government. This required a bipartisan team effort and without their willingness to meet with me and discuss this issue, this legislation would not have made it as far as it has.”

“This bill will strengthen our campaign finance laws and increase transparency in our elections by holding all candidates who file with OCPF equally accountable,” said Finegold. “It is a common sense measure, and I applaud Representative DiZoglio for taking the lead on this important issue.”

“Access to the ballot should be for people who play by the rules, and the campaign finance rules are in place to make sure that political funding is transparent and accountable,” said Tarr. “This bill ensures that municipal elections will also have the benefit of those rules.”

“With this legislation, mayoral candidates in large cities will no longer be able to break campaign finance laws and still get on the ballot,” said O’Connor Ives. “This bill strengthens the public’s access to election information and holds accountable those candidates for public office who do not disclose donor information on time.”

“Throughout this legislative session, Representative DiZoglio has worked to strengthen campaign finance requirements and prevent voting irregularities,” said Eldridge. “This measure would ensure that integrity and fairness is in place during elections and will create more transparency in government.”