Interpretive Rule Regarding Electronic Contributor Redesignations, 16233 [2011-6756]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 56 / Wednesday, March 23, 2011 / Rules and Regulations National (Overseas) (BN(O)) passport with a Hong Kong identification card. (B) Taiwan. To be eligible to participate in the program as a result of a connection to Taiwan, one must be a resident of Taiwan who begins his or her travel in Taiwan and who travels on direct flights from Taiwan to Guam or the CNMI without an intermediate layover or stop, except that the flights may stop in a territory of the United States en route. * * * * * Dated: March 16, 2011. Janet Napolitano, Secretary. [FR Doc. 2011–6555 Filed 3–22–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111–14–P FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION 11 CFR Part 110 [Notice 2011–02] Interpretive Rule Regarding Electronic Contributor Redesignations Federal Election Commission. Notice of interpretive rule. AGENCY: ACTION: Commission regulations require that a contributor’s redesignation of a contribution for another election be in writing and signed by the contributor. The Commission construes the requirements of 11 CFR 110.1(b)(5) and 110.2(b)(5) to encompass a certain method of electronic redesignation. The method of electronic redesignation is described in the supplementary information below. DATES: This Interpretive Rule is effective March 23, 2011. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Allison T. Steinle, Attorney, Office of General Counsel, 999 E Street, NW., Washington, DC 20463 (202) 694–1000 or (800) 424–9530. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Commission regulations require that a contributor’s redesignation of a contribution for another election be in writing and be signed by the contributor. 11 CFR 110.1(b)(5) and 110.2(b)(5). The Commission, however, recognizes that it should interpret the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended, 2 U.S.C. 431 et seq. (‘‘the Act’’) and its regulations ‘‘consistent with contemporary technological innovations * * * where such technology would not compromise the intent of the Act and regulations.’’ Advisory Opinion 1999–09 (Bradley for President); see also Advisory Opinions 2007–30 (Dodd); 2007–17 (DSCC); erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 15:27 Mar 22, 2011 Jkt 223001 1999–36 (Campaign Advantage); 1999– 03 (Microsoft PAC); 1995–09 (NewtWatch). During the course of an audit, the Commission recently determined that a specific redesignation practice provided the same degree of assurance of the contributor’s identity and the contributor’s intent to redesignate the contribution as a handwritten signature. Accordingly, the Commission determined that the practice met the requirements of 11 CFR 110.1(b)(5). The Commission believes it is important to inform the public, including political committees and their treasurers, of this determination. The specific method approved by the Commission worked in the following manner: The political committee informed contributors through postal mail, with a follow-up e-mail, that, by visiting a Web site printed in the letter or by clicking on a link in the e-mail message that directed contributors to the Web site, they could redesignate their contributions to the candidate’s other authorized committee if they wished to do so. Contributors were also informed that if they did not redesignate their contributions, they would then receive refunds automatically. Contributors who visited the Web site were asked to fill out an electronic form affirmatively authorizing the redesignation and verifying their identity by entering their personal information, including first and last name, address, phone number, e-mail address, occupation, and name of employer. Upon completing the form, contributors received a ‘‘receipt record,’’ thanking them for their redesignation. The political committee also retained a record of each electronic redesignation in a database, including the personal information provided by each contributor making a redesignation, in a manner consistent with the recordkeeping requirements for signed written redesignations under 11 CFR 110.1(l). The Commission concluded that this process provided assurance of contributor identity and intent equivalent to a written signature. Accordingly, the Commission construes the written signature requirements of 11 CFR 110.1(b)(5) and 110.2(b)(5) to encompass the method of electronic redesignation described above. Because the specific method approved by the Commission requires the contributor to provide personal information that can be verified against a committee’s records, it provides a level of assurance as to the contributor’s identity and intent comparable to that of a written signature. See Explanation and Justification for Final Rules on Contribution Limitations and PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 16233 Prohibitions, 67 FR 69928, 69934 (Nov. 19, 2002) (Commission declined to eliminate the written signature requirement for contributor redesignations). The Commission encourages the use of innovations in technology to effectuate electronic redesignations. In that light, committees are advised that the Commission will consider other methods of electronic redesignation not explicitly addressed in this interpretive rule, provided that they offer a sufficient degree of assurance of the contributor’s identity and the contributor’s intent to redesignate. Unless and until the Commission initiates a rulemaking on this issue, such consideration may be provided on a case-by-case basis, including but not limited to the Commission’s advisory opinion process or requests for Commission consideration of legal questions. See 2 U.S.C. 437f; 11 CFR part 112; Policy Statement Establishing a Pilot Program for Requesting Consideration of Legal Questions by the Commission, 75 FR 42088 (July 20, 2010). Committees are also advised that this interpretive rule does not alter or affect the timing or recordkeeping requirements of 11 CFR 110.1 or 110.2. This Federal Register notice represents an interpretive rule announcing the general course of action that the Commission intends to follow. This interpretive rule does not constitute an agency rule requiring notice of proposed rulemaking, opportunities for public participation, prior publication, and delay in effective date under 5 U.S.C. 553 of the Administrative Procedure Act (‘‘APA’’). As such, it does not bind the Commission or any members of the general public, or create or remove any rights, duties, etc. The provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, which apply when notice and comment are required by the APA or another statute, are not applicable. See 5 U.S.C. 603(a). Dated: March 16, 2011. On behalf of the Commission. Cynthia L. Bauerly, Chair, Federal Election Commission. [FR Doc. 2011–6756 Filed 3–22–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6715–01–P E:\FR\FM\23MRR1.SGM 23MRR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 56 (Wednesday, March 23, 2011)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 16233]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-6756]


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FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION

11 CFR Part 110

[Notice 2011-02]


Interpretive Rule Regarding Electronic Contributor Redesignations

AGENCY: Federal Election Commission.

ACTION: Notice of interpretive rule.

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SUMMARY: Commission regulations require that a contributor's 
redesignation of a contribution for another election be in writing and 
signed by the contributor. The Commission construes the requirements of 
11 CFR 110.1(b)(5) and 110.2(b)(5) to encompass a certain method of 
electronic redesignation. The method of electronic redesignation is 
described in the supplementary information below.

DATES: This Interpretive Rule is effective March 23, 2011.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Allison T. Steinle, Attorney, Office 
of General Counsel, 999 E Street, NW., Washington, DC 20463 (202) 694-
1000 or (800) 424-9530.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Commission regulations require that a 
contributor's redesignation of a contribution for another election be 
in writing and be signed by the contributor. 11 CFR 110.1(b)(5) and 
110.2(b)(5). The Commission, however, recognizes that it should 
interpret the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended, 2 
U.S.C. 431 et seq. (``the Act'') and its regulations ``consistent with 
contemporary technological innovations * * * where such technology 
would not compromise the intent of the Act and regulations.'' Advisory 
Opinion 1999-09 (Bradley for President); see also Advisory Opinions 
2007-30 (Dodd); 2007-17 (DSCC); 1999-36 (Campaign Advantage); 1999-03 
(Microsoft PAC); 1995-09 (NewtWatch).
    During the course of an audit, the Commission recently determined 
that a specific redesignation practice provided the same degree of 
assurance of the contributor's identity and the contributor's intent to 
redesignate the contribution as a handwritten signature. Accordingly, 
the Commission determined that the practice met the requirements of 11 
CFR 110.1(b)(5). The Commission believes it is important to inform the 
public, including political committees and their treasurers, of this 
determination.
    The specific method approved by the Commission worked in the 
following manner: The political committee informed contributors through 
postal mail, with a follow-up e-mail, that, by visiting a Web site 
printed in the letter or by clicking on a link in the e-mail message 
that directed contributors to the Web site, they could redesignate 
their contributions to the candidate's other authorized committee if 
they wished to do so. Contributors were also informed that if they did 
not redesignate their contributions, they would then receive refunds 
automatically. Contributors who visited the Web site were asked to fill 
out an electronic form affirmatively authorizing the redesignation and 
verifying their identity by entering their personal information, 
including first and last name, address, phone number, e-mail address, 
occupation, and name of employer. Upon completing the form, 
contributors received a ``receipt record,'' thanking them for their 
redesignation. The political committee also retained a record of each 
electronic redesignation in a database, including the personal 
information provided by each contributor making a redesignation, in a 
manner consistent with the recordkeeping requirements for signed 
written redesignations under 11 CFR 110.1(l). The Commission concluded 
that this process provided assurance of contributor identity and intent 
equivalent to a written signature.
    Accordingly, the Commission construes the written signature 
requirements of 11 CFR 110.1(b)(5) and 110.2(b)(5) to encompass the 
method of electronic redesignation described above. Because the 
specific method approved by the Commission requires the contributor to 
provide personal information that can be verified against a committee's 
records, it provides a level of assurance as to the contributor's 
identity and intent comparable to that of a written signature. See 
Explanation and Justification for Final Rules on Contribution 
Limitations and Prohibitions, 67 FR 69928, 69934 (Nov. 19, 2002) 
(Commission declined to eliminate the written signature requirement for 
contributor redesignations).
    The Commission encourages the use of innovations in technology to 
effectuate electronic redesignations. In that light, committees are 
advised that the Commission will consider other methods of electronic 
redesignation not explicitly addressed in this interpretive rule, 
provided that they offer a sufficient degree of assurance of the 
contributor's identity and the contributor's intent to redesignate. 
Unless and until the Commission initiates a rulemaking on this issue, 
such consideration may be provided on a case-by-case basis, including 
but not limited to the Commission's advisory opinion process or 
requests for Commission consideration of legal questions. See 2 U.S.C. 
437f; 11 CFR part 112; Policy Statement Establishing a Pilot Program 
for Requesting Consideration of Legal Questions by the Commission, 75 
FR 42088 (July 20, 2010). Committees are also advised that this 
interpretive rule does not alter or affect the timing or recordkeeping 
requirements of 11 CFR 110.1 or 110.2.
    This Federal Register notice represents an interpretive rule 
announcing the general course of action that the Commission intends to 
follow. This interpretive rule does not constitute an agency rule 
requiring notice of proposed rulemaking, opportunities for public 
participation, prior publication, and delay in effective date under 5 
U.S.C. 553 of the Administrative Procedure Act (``APA''). As such, it 
does not bind the Commission or any members of the general public, or 
create or remove any rights, duties, etc. The provisions of the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act, which apply when notice and comment are 
required by the APA or another statute, are not applicable. See 5 
U.S.C. 603(a).

    Dated: March 16, 2011.

    On behalf of the Commission.
Cynthia L. Bauerly,
Chair, Federal Election Commission.
[FR Doc. 2011-6756 Filed 3-22-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6715-01-P