Elections & Campaign Finance

Campaign Finance FAQs

Office

  • Physical Address:
  • 114 W. Commerce
    San Antonio, TX 78205 (Map)

Mailing Address:
Office of the City Clerk
P.O. Box 839966
San Antonio, TX 78283-3966

Phone
210.207.7253

Fax
210.207.7032

Email

Staff

  • Melinda l. Uriegas, TRMCEmail City of San Antonio
    Assistant City Clerk, 210.207.7255
CAMPAIGN FINANCE

We hope that this site is helpful to you. Whether you are interested in running for Municipal Office or just getting general information about the City of San Antonio Municipal Elections, we hope you will find what you need here! If you are unable to find the information you need, have a question, or have a suggestion to improve our website, please contact us.

Physical Address
Office of the City Clerk
1st Floor Municipal Plaza Building
114 W. Commerce
San Antonio, TX 78205
Phone: 210.207.7253
Fax: 210.207.7032
Mailing Address
Leticia M. Vacek, TRMC/CMC/MMC
City Clerk
Office of the City Clerk
P.O. Box 839966
San Antonio, TX 78283-3966
Campaign Finance - Frequently Asked Questions
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A Candidate for Office can appoint a Campaign Treasurer at any time with the Office of the City Clerk. 

In accordance with Title 15 of the Texas Election Code, Officeholders and Candidates may not accept any campaign contributions or make any campaign expenditures (including paying filing fees) until a Campaign Treasurer has been designated. Take note, that not even personal funds may be expended for campaign purposes without first appointing a Campaign Treasurer. 

Specific Purpose Political Action Committees (SPAC) are required to designate a Campaign Treasurer with the Office of the City Clerk before accepting or spending more than $500.

In accordance with Municipal Campaign Finance Regulations, Candidates, Officeholders, and Specific Purpose Committees formed to support or oppose Candidates must designate the office being sought on the Campaign Treasurer Appointment. 
A Candidate, Officeholder, or Specific Purpose Political Action Committee can change his/her Campaign Treasurer Appointment at any time. 

For Specific Purpose Political Action Committees, the designation of a new Campaign Treasurer triggers the submission of a Campaign and Expenditure Report no later than 10 days after changing Campaign Treasurers. The report is to be submitted by the outgoing Campaign Treasurer. 
A Candidate or Officeholder should only have one Campaign Treasurer Appointment on file regardless of the political office being sought. When the filing authority changes, it is the responsibility of the Officeholder, Candidate, or Specific Purpose Political Action Committee Treasurer to transfer the Campaign Treasurer Appointment to the new filing authority. When filing a new Campaign Treasurer Appointment, the Candidate, Officeholder or Committee Treasurer is responsible for submitting a new Campaign Treasurer with the new filing authority along with a certified copy of the Campaign Treasurer Appointment on file with the old filing authority. 
Once an individual takes affirmative action to seek an elective office, he/she is considered to be a Candidate for elected office regardless if the individual is an Officeholder. 

Examples of affirmative action include Appointing a Campaign Treasurer and/or filing an Application for a Place on the Ballot. Please refer to Section 251.001 of the Texas Election Code for more detailed information regarding examples of affirmation action. 
A Specific Purpose Political Action Committee is a committee that is created to support or oppose a Candidate for Municipal Office or is created to support or oppose a Municipal Ballot Measure. 
There are no qualifications to serve as a Campaign Treasurer. However, a person is ineligible for appointment as a Campaign Treasurer if the person is the Campaign Treasurer of a Political Action Committee which has outstanding filing obligations (including outstanding penalties). 
Campaign Contribution and Expenditure Reports are required to be submitted by Officeholders, Candidates, and Specific Purpose Political Action Committees (SPAC) once a Campaign Treasurer has been appointed and filed with the Office of the City Clerk. Reports are required to be submitted by an Officeholder, Candidate, or SPAC Treasurer even if there is no reportable political activity. 
  • For a May General or Special Election: Candidates and Specific Purpose Political Action Committees (SPACs) formed to support or oppose Municipal Candidates are required to submit Contribution and Expenditure Reports Semi-Annually every January 15 and July 15, 30 days before the Election, and 8 days before the Election.  Effective January 1, 2019, the City of San Antonio will also require the submission of Quarterly Contribution and Expenditure Reports due October 15.  
  • During a Run-off Election: Candidates and SPACs with a supporting or opposing Municipal Candidate involved in the Run-off Election are required to submit a Contribution and Expenditure Report 8 days before the Run-off Election.  Effective January 1, 2019, the City of San Antonio will also require the submission of Quarterly Contribution and Expenditure Reports due April 15 and October 15.  
  • During a Calendar Year when No Municipal Election is Scheduled: All Officeholders, Candidates, and SPACs with a Campaign Treasurer Appointment on file with the Office of the City Clerk are required to submit Campaign and Expenditure Reports Semi-Annually every January 15 and July 15.  Effective January 1, 2019, the City of San Antonio will also require the submission of Quarterly Contribution and Expenditure Reports due April 15 and October 15.  
  • For a Special November Election: Candidates and/or Specific Purpose Political Action Committee Treasurers are required to submit Campaign and Expenditure Reports Semi-Annually every January 15 and July 15, 30 days before the Special Election, and 8 days before the Special Election.  Effective January 1, 2019, the City of San Antonio will also require the submission of a Quarterly Contribution and Expenditure Report due April 15.  
  • Deadline for Submission of Reports: All Campaign Contribution and Expenditure Reports are required to be filed with the Office of the City Clerk by 5:00 pm on the date the report is due regardless if the report is submitted electronically or by hardcopy.

View a complete list of Contribution and Expenditure Reports to be submitted and respective due dates.

Yes. Campaign Contribution and Expenditure Reports are required to be submitted by all Officeholders, Candidates, and Specific Purpose Political Action Committees who have a Campaign Treasurer Appointment on file with the Office of the City Clerk even if there is no reportable political activity.
Yes. As long as an Officeholder, Candidate, or Specific Purpose Political Action Committee (SPAC) has appointed a Campaign Treasurer, Campaign Contribution and Expenditure Reports must be filed in accordance with State and Municipal Campaign Finance requirements. Withdrawing from an election, being disqualified as a candidate, being defeated in an election, being affected by term limitations, or having no reportable political activity does not absolve an Officeholder, Candidate, or Specific Purpose Political Action Committee from the requirement to file timely reports. Only the submission of a complete Final Report releases the Candidate, Officeholder, or SPAC Treasurer from the obligation to file reports. 
This is a Campaign Contribution and Expenditure Report that terminates the Campaign Treasurer Appointment and relieves a filer of his/her obligation to file further reports with the Office of the City Clerk. A Final Report can be submitted at any time.  I

If at the time the Final Report is submitted the former Candidate retains surplus funds or assets, Annual Reports of Unexpended Contributions must be submitted no later than January 15 for no more than 6 years from the date the Final Report was submitted.  Please refer to the Texas Ethics Commission Guide entitled Campaign Finance Guide for Candidates and Officers who file with Local Authorities to obtain more information regarding how to dispose of surplus funds and/or assets after the Final Report has been filed. 

No. On April 21, 2010, the Texas Ethics Commission issued Advisory Opinion No. 489 which states that corporations are prohibited from making political contributions unless specifically allowed by Title 15 of the Texas Election Code. 
To obtain more detailed information regarding corporate contributions; please see Title 15 of the Texas Election Code.
Yes. Cumulative contributions received from any single donor during any single Municipal Contribution Cycle cannot exceed $500 for a City Council Candidate or Officeholder OR $1,000 for a Mayoral Candidate or Officeholder.

As denoted in Section 2-301 of Municipal Campaign Finance Regulations, there are (4) four Municipal Contribution Cycles.

  • Pre-Election Contribution Cycle: Begins July 1 of the calendar year before the date of the General Municipal Election and ends on the date of the General Municipal Election.  CAVEAT:  Candidates for Mayor or City Council may not accept nor deposit campaign contributions after midnight on the fourth calendar day before the general election;

  • Run-off Contribution Cycle (if applicable): Begins the day after the General Municipal Election and ends on the date of the Run-off Election, for those Candidates involved in the Run-off Election.  CAVEAT:  Candidates for Mayor or City Council may not accept nor deposit campaign contributions after midnight on the fourth calendar day before the run-off election;

  • Post Election Contribution Cycle: Begins the day after the General Municipal Election or the day after the Run-off Election, as applicable, and ends on June 30 of the calendar year before the next General Municipal Election; and 
  • Special Election Contribution Cycle: Due to a Council Vacancy, begins on the day the City Council acknowledges the Vacancy and ends on the day of the Special Election to Fill the Unexpired Term of Office.  The Special Run-off Election Contribution Cycle begins the day after the Special Election to Fill the Unexpired Term of Office and ends on the date of the Special Run-off Election. CAVEAT:  Candidates for Mayor or City Council may not accept nor deposit campaign contributions after midnight on the fourth calendar day before the special election. 

Click here to view the Contribution Cycles for the May 4, General Election.

NOTE:  Contributions received after the four-day deadline or contributions not deposited by the deadline may be accepted and deposited during the subsequent contribution cycle, and are subject to limitations for the contribution cycle during which they are deposited.

Municipal Contribution Cycles work in conjunction with the State Reporting Periods. However, each has different beginning and ending periods. The Office of the City Clerk has created a document which lists the Municipal Campaign Contribution Cycles, the Contribution and Expenditure Reports required to be submitted, and the periods covered within each Report. View the document.
In accordance with Municipal Campaign Finance Regulations, Campaign and Expenditure Reports are required to be submitted electronically using the City of San Antonio’s Electronic Filing System. However, the City of San Antonio does allow for Officeholders, Candidates, or Specific Purpose Political Action Committees to file original hardcopy Campaign and Expenditure Reports if he/she meets certain criteria. If a hardcopy report is filed, an Affidavit must be submitted with the Campaign and Expenditure Report.

In accordance with Section 2-306 of Municipal Campaign Finance Regulations, Officeholders and Candidates for Municipal Office are required to submit monthly bank statements within five (5) business days of receipt of the statement from the financial institution. 

Statements should be delivered to the following address:

Physical Address
Office of the City Clerk
1st Floor Municipal Building 
114 W. Commerce
San Antonio, TX 78205

Mailing Address
Leticia M. Vacek, TRMC/CMC/MMC
City
Clerk
Office of the City Clerk
P.O. Box 839966
San Antonio, TX 78283-3966

Statements can also be e-mailed to OfficeoftheCityClerk@sanantonio.gov. 

Please refer to the Campaign Finance section of this webpage for more detailed information regarding this topic.

Additionally, Chapter 145 of the Local Government Code requires that all Officeholders and Candidates for Municipal Office submit a Personal Financial Statement (PFS) while the City of San Antonio’s Ethics Code requires the submission of a PFS Addendum. For more detailed information regarding the Application process, please refer to General Municipal Election Information FAQ's. 

Pursuant to Chapter 258 of the Texas Election Code, every Candidate and Political Committee is encouraged to subscribe to the Code of Fair Campaign Practices. The Code may be filed with the Office of the City Clerk upon submission of the Campaign Treasurer Appointment. 

Candidate packets containing pertinent election information are available in the Office of the City Clerk before a General Election. The cost of the packet is currently thirty dollars ($30). Packets contain the following:

  • Filing Procedures
  • Important dates related to the election
  • The Application for a Place on the Ballot
  • Petition Form and number of signatures
  • State and Municipal Political Advertising Information
  • Financial Disclosure Information
  • State and Local Campaign Finance Regulations