DC Fair Elections Coalition

Candidate Resources

***DISCLAIMER: The following information is intended as a resource guide for candidates and potential candidates, but all deadlines and information should be verified with D.C.’s Office of Campaign Finance

Candidates or potential candidates with questions about the Fair Elections coalition or program should contact Mat Hanson (mhanson@workingfamilies.org) and John Zottoli (john.zottoli@gmail.com).

We encourage you to reach out to the Office of Campaign Finance’s Fair Elections program staff directly if you haven’t already.

Upcoming Events and Trainings

Please join the DC Fair Elections coalition for a candidate and campaign team training. We will hold a series of trainings leading up to the 2020 General Election for candidates, campaign team members and residents who are interested in learning more about Fair Elections and how to run effective campaigns.

Dates to be announced.

Please contact: Mat Hanson (mhanson@workingfamilies.org) and John Zottoli (john.zottoli@gmail.com) for information.

Steps for Participating in the Fair Elections Program (FEP)

❖ Pledge to:

– Accept only qualified small dollar contributions
– Forgo all corporate and traditional PAC money
– Limit the amount that you and your family may contribute
– Participate in a candidate debate if running in a contested election

❖ All candidates, both FEP and traditional campaign finance:

– File Declaration of Candidacy
– File Public Financing Statement of Registration
* FEP candidates: check (✓) “Amendment” box at the top
– File Nominating Petitions w/ appropriate number of signatures
– Attend a campaign finance orientation and training program

❖ For FEP candidates:

– File Fair Elections Program Affidavit of Candidate and Treasurer
– Have each contributor fill out the Receipt and Affirmation Statement
– Reach qualification thresholds for number of contributors & minimum amount raised

By office, the small dollar contribution limit per donor, the minimum number of eligible donors and minimum amount
raised to reach the qualifying threshold, and the total base amount payment a candidate receives

Schedule of Payments

– The first half of the base amount will be received within five business days of receiving certification as a “participating candidate”

– The second half of the base amount will be received within five business days of qualifying for the ballot

– Qualified small dollar contributions (QSDC) are eligible for matching funds at a 5:1 rate after the candidate is certified for the program

– Each QSDC and contribution from a non-District individual must be accompanied by the Receipt and Affirmation Statement, which contains a digital or physical receipt to the contributor, with a copy to the candidate which includes the contributor’s digital or physical signature, resident address, telephone number, occupation and private place of business, the candidates name, as well as a written signed oath or affirmation subject to penalties of perjury attesting to certain required statements.

❖ For the 2020 election cycle, the maximum amount participating candidates may receive for the matching payments at the 5:1 rate for QSDC from individual district residents is as follows:

– At Large Council Member – $308,639
– Ward Council Member – $241,055
– At Large State Board of Education Member – $21,877
– Ward State Board of Education Member – $14,006

The cap is based on a look back at 110% of the average expenditures of all winning candidates for the covered office sought in the prior two (2) election cycles

Important Dates & Deadlines

**subject to change

2020 Primary Election Calendar

– Primary Qualifying Period: November 7, 2018 – March 18, 2020
Last day to file nominating petitions & qualify for DC Fair Elections for the primary: March 28, 2020
– Primary Election: June 16, 2020**

2020 General Election Calendar

– General Qualifying Period: November 7, 2018 – August 20, 2020
Last day to file nominating petitions & qualify for DC Fair Elections for the general: August 20, 2020
– General Election: November 3, 2020**
Candidates who ran in the primary as Fair Elections candidates must continue to use the program in the general if they win and do not need to re-qualify.

Filing Deadlines:

– July 31, 2019
– December 10, 2019
– January 31, 2020
– March 10, 2020
– April 17, 2020
– May 7, 2020
– May 27, 2020
– June 10, 2020
– August 10, 2020
– September 3, 2020
– September 23, 2020
– October 10, 2020
– October 26, 2020
– December 10, 2020

Documents & Links

OCF Website:

Office of Campaign Finance – Fair Elections Program


Declaration of Candidacy
Public Financing Statement of Registration
Affidavit of Candidate and Treasurer
Receipt and Affirmation Statement for Contributor

Informational Resources:

Fair Elections Process for Participants
Fact Sheet for the Fair Elections Program during the 2020 Election Cycle
Public Financing Program Educational Brochure
Overview of the Fair Elections Program