The Board of Elections has the duty to notify candidates of finance report filing deadlines, receive campaign finance reports and audit campaign finance reports. The board maintains public record files for campaign finances for six (6) years, after which time the records are properly disposed.
How to File Campaign Finance
To download the Campaign Finance forms published by the Ohio Secretary of State, click here
A copy of the requirements for campaign finance reporting may be obtained by contacting the Candidate and Voter Services Department of the Board of Elections at 216-443-3298.
You may also access the requirements at the Secretary of State's Election Page. This and other important links can be accessed through "Links" on the navigation bar to the left.
- Section I -- Campaign Finance Reporting Includes definitions of terms, step-by-step instructions for candidates; special rules for statewide and general assembly candidates; rules for legislative campaign funds, rules for use of personal funds by statewide and general assembly candidates; rules guiding PACs, corporation, labor organizations and political parties, and more.
- Section II -- Forms and How to Use Them Includes all campaign finance forms and instructions, in separate, printable PDF files.
- Section III -- Campaign Finance Ohio Revised Code Statutory text Code pertaining to campaign finance.
- Section IV -- Campaign Finance Ohio Administrative Code Administrative Code pertaining to campaign finance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the Filing Deadlines?
A: Click here to view the Filing Deadlines Calendar
Q: What is a Candidate Committee?
A: A Candidate Committee is formed when a person seeking public office receives or expends, or has agreed to let another receive or expend, monies in regards to that candidacy. Personal monies and candidacy monies are not to be co-mingled. A current Designation of Treasurer form must be filed with the board.
Q: What is a Political Party Committee?
A: A political party is an organization whose candidates received five-percent or more of the vote for governor and lieutenant governor or nominees for presidential elector at last election. A new political party may be created by petition process, but its candidates must meet the five-percent requirement at the next election for governor or president to retain political party status.
Q: What is a Political Action Committee (PAC)?
A: Two or more persons who receive or spend items or money in an attempt to influence the outcome of an election. It does not include candidates’ committees, legislative campaign funds or political parties. Clubs, associations and parent/teacher organizations can be political action committees if:
- One of the main reasons for the groups existence is related to supporting or opposing candidates or ballot issues.
- It often engages in political activity.
- Funds were specifically raised for political activity. [R.C. 3517.01(B)(8)].
Q: What is a Political Contributing Entity (PCE)?
A: A corporation or labor organization that may lawfully make contributions and expenditures. Currently, only labor organizations may make contributions and expenditures in accordance with the decision in UAW et al. Philomena, et al. (1998) Case No. 97AP-E-01-69 (10th district). Corporations may not currently be PCE’s.