Frequently Asked Questions
This Frequently Asked Questions is being added to all the time. Please check back again for new entries.
|IRS Registration and Filing Requirement|
|How to File a G.A.B-2S Using the GAB-2 Excel Workbook||
Campaign finance reports can be filed using a GAB-2 Excel workbook with schedules that may be found on the Government Accountability Board’s website at http://cfis.wi.gov. Please click on the “Forms” link under Campaign Finance Information. This template resembles the older EB-2 Excel workbook that many committees used in the past, but it differs in some detail.
If you choose to use this new Excel spreadsheet, you should e-mail your completed document to Board staff at firstname.lastname@example.org and staff will upload the information contained in the spreadsheet into CFIS for you.
Every committee must use a form specified by the Government Accountability Board to file its campaign finance report. A committee that chooses to use the new Excel template with schedule detail must use the template approved by the Government Accountability Board, not an older version. If your template does not match any fields listed in this document, you are using the wrong template. Please contact the G.A.B for the correct form.
|How to File A G.A.B-2S Using the CFIS Upload Process||
Users who are comfortable using Microsoft Excel spreadsheets may want to upload transactions to the system. Please use the accepted spreadsheet formats if you choose this option.
Users must use the Excel templates provided by the GAB in order to use the Upload Transactions function or Users must format their spreadsheets exactly as the templates available in the Upload Transactions menu option. Note: There are two templates that you must use. One template is for the entry of Receipts only. One template is for the entry of Expenses only.
You can download and save the Receipts template by clicking on the “Receipts” link on the Upload Transactions page, clicking File, scrolling down and clicking “Save As”, and then click “Save” to save the file to your computer.
You can download and save the Expenses template by clicking on the “Expenses” link on the Upload Transactions page, clicking File, scrolling down and clicking “Save As”, and then click “Save” to save the file to your computer. You must save these data entry templates to your local computer drive to avoid loss of data entry information.
|How to File a G.A.B-2S Using the Paper Form||
Campaign finance reports must be filed by all registrants that are not exempt from filing reports. A paper copy of the report should be mailed to the Government Accountability Board, P.O. Box 7984, Madison, WI 53707-7984. Reports must be postmarked on or before the filing due date in order to be considered filed timely.
Each of the report schedules has detailed instructions for completing it on the back. These instructions should be reviewed each time a campaign finance report is prepared. A candidate is only required to file schedules that show activity. You do not need to include blank schedules when filing reports.
All contributions received by the committee must be reported in Schedule 1 (Receipts) of the campaign finance report. Contributions and loans from individuals are listed in Schedule 1A (Contributions Including Loans From Individuals). Contributions from other committees, such as political action committees, political party committees, and other candidate committees, are reported in Schedule 1B (Contributions from Committees). All other income such as loans from financial institutions, contributions returned from other registrants, refunds, returns of deposits or interest on investments are reported in Schedule 1C (Other Income and Commercial Loans).
The date which must be provided for all contributions is the date the committee received the contribution, that is, the date it acquired possession and control of the contribution, not the date of deposit or date on the check (unless all dates are the same).
All money spent by the committee is reported in Schedule 2 (Disbursements) of the campaign finance report. General operating expenditures are listed in Schedule 2A (Gross Expenditures). Contributions to other political committees are listed in Schedule 2B (Contributions to Committees).
Additional information required to be disclosed is reported in Schedule 3 (Additional Disclosure) of the campaign finance report. All obligations of the committee such as unpaid bills are listed in Schedule 3A (Incurred Obligations Excluding Loans). Loans and the individuals who guarantee loans for the committee are listed in Schedule 3B (Loans).
Schedule 4 (Termination Request) of the campaign finance report is used for requests to terminate registration. A final campaign finance report must be filed with a termination request.
|How to File a G.A.B-2S Using the CFIS Data Entry Screens|
|Campaign Finance Overview - Local Candidates|
|Campaign Finance Overview - State Candidates|
The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board has developed this guide to assist Political Action Committees (PACs) in understanding campaign finance law, meeting the registration and financial reporting requirements, and complying with contribution limits and prohibitions.
The purpose of this manual is to assist conduits in complying with Wisconsin's campaign finance registration and reporting requriements. It provides an overview of the record keeping and reporting requirements for Wisconsin conduits.
|Recall Expense Funds: Contribution Limits and Residual Funds|
|G.A.B. Announces Campaign Finance Training Sessions||
MADISON, WI – The Government Accountability Board will provide campaign finance training around the state in May and June.
G.A.B. staff will be conducting 10, two-hour training sessions in Eau Claire, Green Bay, La Crosse, Madison, Racine County, Wausau and West Allis. In addition to campaign finance laws, the sessions will also cover how to use the state’s online Campaign Finance Information System: http://cfis.wi.gov.
“Campaign finance laws affect thousands of state and local candidates and political committees,” said Kevin J. Kennedy, director and general counsel of the G.A.B. “Whether they register with the G.A.B. or a local clerk, it is important they understand how to report correctly so the public has the information it needs to make informed decisions.”
Jonathan Becker, the G.A.B.’s Ethics & Accountability Division Administrator, said the sessions may also be useful training for Wisconsin’s county and municipal clerks, who assist local candidates with their filings. “Our staff members are experts, and they can provide practical advice not only to anyone who must file campaign finance reports, but also the clerks who keep those records,” he said.
Persons interested in attending should visit the G.A.B. website to view the full schedule and register online: http://gab.wi.gov/campaign-finance/training. Seating is limited. Those without Internet access should call the G.A.B. at 608-266-8005.