HBA-CBW S.B. 822 77(R) BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisS.B. 822 By: West, Royce Judicial Affairs 5/4/2001 Engrossed BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE The Judicial Campaign Fairness Act sets forth provisions to allow aggregate contribution limits and limits on the reimbursement of personal funds that are applicable to judicial candidates in connection with each election in which the candidate is involved. Senate Bill 822 establishes contribution limits for unopposed judicial candidates. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency, or institution. ANALYSIS Senate Bill 822 amends the Election Code to establish that the general primary election and general election for state and county officers are considered to be a single election in which a judicial candidate is involved if the candidate is unopposed in the primary election or does not have an opponent in the general election whose name is to appear on the ballot for the purposes of a contribution limit and the limit on reimbursement of personal funds. The bill increases the contribution limit by 25 percent for such a candidate. The bill authorizes a candidate who accepts political contributions from a person that in the aggregate exceed the applicable contribution limit but that do not exceed the adjusted limit to use the amount of those contributions that exceeds the limit only for making an officeholder expenditure. The bill removes the provisions that prohibits a specific purpose committee from accepting a political contribution in excess of $50 from a law firm, a member of a law firm, or a general-purpose committee affiliated with a law firm and from knowingly accepting a political contribution from a general-purpose committee that exceeds 15 percent of the limit on expenditures under applicable law when aggregated with other political contributions from that committee. EFFECTIVE DATE September 1, 2001.