You have no doubt heard the old adage that in comedy timing is everything. Well, the same could be said of making political contributions.
If you finished out 2023 scrambling to make last minute, year-end contributions before December 31, you may be looking for less hectic ways to plan your political giving. With 40 years of disbursement planning under our belts, we have a few ideas to help you create a giving plan for the new year.
At a minimum, your PAC should have contribution criteria that outlines which candidates/committees are eligible to receive a PAC contribution. A good rule of thumb is to have PAC bylaws which expand on your contribution criteria and detail how money can be raised and spent. Each PAC has its own criteria for giving and this will factor into planning your political spending. In addition to different giving criteria, many PACs have different individuals requesting contributions to campaigns and committees. Streamlining your process will help to ensure contributions are made in a timely manner and meet all rules and regulations related to giving in a particular jurisdiction.
Consider setting a routine schedule for making your expenditures. Depending on the size of your program, you could create a weekly, monthly, or quarterly schedule. Your PAC may want to consider having a schedule for obtaining Board approval to make expenditures. Having approvers sign off by Tuesday each week, for example, helps Board members plan time to review and approve PAC expenditure requests and avoids any last-minute delays due to a required approver being unavailable.
Another benefit of having a set schedule is to be able to document why a contribution was made on a specific date. Questions from auditors, your eligible class, or a reporter on why a contribution was made to a specific candidate the day before a crucial vote on an important issue, through the PAC, are more easily answered if your organization always write checks on Thursdays, or 10 days before the end of the quarter.
By making some of these small changes, you will set yourself and your PAC up for success during this election season. PASS is here to help implement any and all of these suggestions!