OPINION NUMBER - 033

ADOPTED - 1979/05/31

SUBJECT - Candidate committee - unexpended campaign funds - receipt of additional funds and making expenditures during a period in which there is no election.

REQUESTED BY: The Honorable Rex Haberman, State Senator, State Capitol Lincoln, Nebraska 68509

QUESTION: May the candidate committee of a State Senator which has unexpended funds receive additional funds and make expenditures for travel and other related expenses when the Senator visits the communities of his district during a period in which there is no election?

CONCLUSION

Yes

ANALYSIS

The question presented in Request for Advisory Opinion No. 79-7 is as follows:

"My committee account has funds and is still receiving funds. May these funds be used for travel and other related expenses when a Senator visits the communities of his district?"

Section 49-1409 provides that an incumbent officeholder eligible for reelection is a candidate and pursuant to section 49-1445 must have a candidate committee once he has raised, received or spent over $400. Such candidate committee must have a Statement of Organization on file and file campaign statements not only in connection with elections but annually if it has raised, received or spent over $1000 since the closing date of the last campaign statement filed.

Section 49-1466 provides for transferring unexpended funds upon termination of a candidate committee, but as we have previously ruled in Advisory Opinions No. 20 and 30, the Act does not contain prohibitions against making expenditures except as provided in section 49-1479, namely, to another candidate committee or on behalf thereof. And, pursuant to Advisory Opinion No. 21 contributions received by an incumbent unless otherwise identified, are to be considered as receipts of his candidate committee.

tem 6 of the "Rex Haberman for Legislature" committee refers to the date of election for which the committee is supporting or opposing candidates or ballot questions as being May 9, 1978. We construe this information to mean that the primary election of May 9, 1978, is the first election for which this candidate committee was formed to support Rex Haberman for nomination and election to the Legislature and take the position that such Statement of Organization need not be amended in order to receive additional funds and make such expenditures. In any case Item 6 information is not required in that rules and regulations providing for the same have not been adopted by the commission pursuant to section 49-1450(7) and is not otherwise required by section 49-1450.