State urges MoCo candidates to wait to apply for public campaign financing while law is amended

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By Glynis Kazanjian

For MarylandReporter.com

Glynis Kazanjian will be reporting on Montgomery County races.

A bill recommending three amendments to Montgomery County’s public campaign finance law was introduced by the County Council Tuesday, the same day state election staff urged Montgomery County candidates to wait until Aug. 1 or later, to submit their applications for public campaign financing.

The first amendment would allow candidates applying for public campaign financing to correct mistakes in their application rather than become immediately disqualified as the law now states.

“It is highly recommended that the initial request for certification occur on or after August 1, 2017,” State Candidacy and Campaign Finance Director Jared DeMarinis wrote to qualified candidates on July 11.  “There is pending expedited legislation that should be adopted by the end of the month impacting the certification process. Currently, a committee may submit only one request and may not cure any deficiencies if discovered after the submission.  The new legislation would potentially allow for a committee to correct any issues on the submitted report.”

Other amendments would allow candidates to receive matching public contributions during the general election for certain unqualified matching contributions received during the primary election and to credit funds awarded in error that a candidate must repay.

A public hearing on the bill is scheduled for Tuesday, July 18 at 1:30 p.m.