Adventures in PAC-ing II: Campaign Finance Reports

Running a PAC isn't just all guts and glory. No, apparently it involves paperwork. Lots of paperwork. I just finished our first quarterly campaign finance report for the Virginia State Board of Elections, and man, it wasn't fun. My main gripe with the process is with the website, for which end-user experience must have been an afterthought. The workflow design must have been performed by a sadist, as most basic data entry tasks involved multiple steps through prerequisite click just to perform an entry. We had to report every contribution as a 'reciept', and do you think we were able to import the lovely transaction report spreadsheet that we recieved from ActBLUE? No. Each one of our 70-odd transactions needed to be entered into a webform: last name, first name, occupation, employer, city and state of employement, address (street, city, zip), date of contribution, amount. And if we were entering multiple contributions for a single contact, do you think we could just 'add new' after entering the first transaction? No, we had to go from the receipts menu to the contacts menu, find the contact, and then select add reciept. I could go on, but I'm ranting. 

Suffice to say, it seems that this process seems to favor campaigns that rely on big-money donors, and thus have fewer transactions to report. Smaller campaigns must rely on volunteers to enter this information. I do recall that one of the challenges of the Sanders campaign was the sheer number of donations caused problems with reporting to the FEC. (Thankfully we don't have to worry about that yet...) If anyone has any experience with dealing with campaign finance reporting and would like to share any stories, please reach out or comment below. 

Rant aside, as your lowly Treasurer, I have the following to report: 

Report for 04/01/2016 - 06/30/2016:
Contributions received this period: $1731.66
Expenditures made this period: $1276.98
Balance: $454.68

I personally contributed about $300 of my own money to get things moving, and we're very grateful to everyone that contributed, including Nic McCarthy, who's the only other person breaking the $100-threshold and therefore named on the report. The post DPVA convention reception brought in about $320 by itself, and we've still got over 200 pin-back buttons in inventory to use for fundraising. 

As far as the remaining funds go, a portion of them will be earmarked to pay for web hosting through next November, ($11/month,) and we'll probably use some for social media tools such as Postcron, but we don't have any other immediate expenditures that we anticipate. So for now we'll just sit on these funds until we have a better idea what to do with them.