March 9, 2015
Calling All New Jersey Government Contractors: The Clock is Ticking . . . Are you Ready for the March 30th Pay-to-Play Filing Deadline?
As we have previously discussed here, the New Jersey Pay-to-Play Annual Disclosure filing deadline is right around the corner. Any entity that received payments of $50,000 or more as a result of payments from a New Jersey government entity during the 2014 calendar year is required to file Form BE electronically with the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission no later than Monday, March 30, 2015. Not sure whether your company is required to file Form BE? If you are not sure whether you are required to file Form BE, you may want to start your information-gathering process by compiling all of your New Jersey government-contract information. As you compile this information, please keep in mind that: • Contracts with bi-state agencies, such as the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and the Delaware River Port Authority, are not included. • Contracts with Boards of Education and Fire Districts are included. • The $50,000 threshold is an aggregate threshold – so, if you hold ten (10) contracts with New Jersey government entities and received payments totaling $10,000 for each contract during the 2014 calendar year, you are required to file Form BE. Not sure whether you have any political contributions to report? Whether you need to file a “detailed” Form BE setting forth both contract and contribution information depends on whether you have any political contributions to report. So, if you know that you exceeded the $50,000 threshold and are not sure whether you have any contributions to report, you may want to start your information-gathering process by compiling contribution information. As you compile this information, please keep in mind that: • The “reportable” threshold is $300 per election when the contribution was made to a candidate committee (election cycles may span multiple calendar years) and $300 per calendar year when the contribution was made to a party committee, political action committee/continuing political committee or a legislative leadership committee. • The group of covered contributors is broader than under other pay-to-play laws (in addition to surveying owners of your company or firm, you will also need to survey officers and directors). • The group of covered political recipients is broader than under other pay-to-play laws (with the exception of contributions to federal recipients, you are required to disclose contributions to all other New Jersey political recipients from the State level down to the school board level). Not sure whether you are on the right track to file a timely and accurate disclosure? You still have time to gather all relevant information to make that determination. The key is to designate a point person within your organization who is responsible for gathering all contract and contribution information. Remember - you may need to reach out to various individuals within your company so the sooner you begin to gather the information, the better!