Calling All Government Contractors: Upcoming Maryland Political Contribution Disclosure Form

For government contractors, the start of a new year brings with it a host of filing requirements in many states along the Northeast Corridor. Although some states (such as New York and Connecticut) do not impose annual or semi-annual filing requirements on government contractors, other states such as New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland require government contractors to file reports. This is the first in a series of blog posts that focuses on the upcoming filing deadlines in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. These reports generally require government contractors to disclose certain information about their political contributions, but no two filing requirements are the same. As your company prepares to put its best foot forward in 2015, this series will share what you need to know about these disclosure requirements and some compliance tips to make sure that your company is accurately capturing all relevant information.

Maryland (Filing Deadline – February 5, 2015 & August 5, 2015) 

The filing requirements applicable to Maryland government contractors changed on January 1, 2015. This means that all Maryland government contractors need to familiarize themselves with new filing requirements this year! Maryland law now requires businesses that hold a single contract worth at least $200,000 with the state to electronically file the Contribution Disclosure Form semi-annually with the Maryland Board of Elections. The first semi-annual report must be filed no later than Thursday, February 5, 2015.

Compliance Tip – Companies subject to this disclosure requirement must not only disclose information specific to each of their Maryland government contracts, but they must also disclose contributions that exceed $500 per reporting period to covered candidates and officeholders made by the company; a subsidiary of the company; an officer, director, or partner of the company or of the subsidiary; a Political Action Committee sponsored by the company; and an employee or agent of the company or the subsidiary, if the employee or agent made the contribution at the direction of the company or the subsidiary. Regardless of whether a company has contributions to report, the company must still file a Contribution Disclosure Form if the company holds Maryland government contracts.