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FPPC Weighs Campaign Donations by Text Message

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
But there are some questions on how that system would work - questions the state's campaign finance watchdog met to discuss Tuesday.

Even though some public interest and cell phone industry groups like the idea, they also raise a bunch of concerns.  For example, who can donate, how much can someone donate, how many times can someone donate and how can the state keep track of who donates, as required by law?  Fair Political Practices Commission Chair Ann Ravel came up with the idea.  She says her commission's goal is simply to make it legal - then leave most of the details to the cell phone carriers.

Ravel: "Our law requires fairly extensive reporting over $100.  So if the industry is able to get that information from people who are texting, it's conceivably unlimited how much people could donate."

The FPPC will vote on whether to create the system next month.  If approved, it'd be in place for next year's elections - though only state races and ballot measures would be covered.

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