(a) Duties of Commission
The Commission shall--
(1) prescribe forms necessary to implement this Act;
(2) prepare, publish, and furnish to all persons required to file reports and statements under this Act a manual recommending uniform methods of bookkeeping and reporting;
(3) develop a filing, coding, and cross-indexing system consistent with the purposes of this Act;
(4) within 48 hours after the time of the receipt by the Commission of reports and statements filed with it, make them available for public inspection, and copying, at the expense of the person requesting such copying, except that any information copied from such reports or statements may not be sold or used by any person for the purpose of soliciting contributions or for commercial purposes, other than using the name and address of any political committee to solicit contributions from such committee. A political committee may submit 10 pseudonyms on each report filed in order to protect against the illegal use of names and addresses of contributors, provided such committee attaches a list of such pseudonyms to the appropriate report. The Secretary or the Commission shall exclude these lists from the public record;
(5) keep such designations, reports, and statements for a period of 10 years from the date of receipt, except that designations, reports, and statements that relate solely to candidates for the House of Representatives shall be kept for 5 years from the date of their receipt;
(6)(A) compile and maintain a cumulative index of designations, reports, and statements filed under this Act, which index shall be published at regular intervals and made available for purchase directly or by mail;
(B) compile, maintain, and revise a separate cumulative index of reports and statements filed by multi-candidate committees, including in such index a list of multi-candidate committees; and
(C) compile and maintain a list of multi-candidate committees, which shall be revised and made available monthly;
(7) prepare and publish periodically lists of authorized committees which fail to file reports as required by this Act;
(8) prescribe rules, regulations, and forms to carry out the provisions of this Act, in accordance with the provisions of subsection (d); and
(9) transmit to the President and to each House of the Congress no later than June 1 of each year, a report which states in detail the activities of the Commission in carrying out its duties under this Act, and any recommendations for any legislative or other action the Commission considers appropriate.
(b) Audits and field investigations
The Commission may conduct audits and field investigations of any political committee required to file a report under section 30104 of this title. All audits and field investigations concerning the verification for, and receipt and use of, any payments received by a candidate or committee under chapter 95 or chapter 96 of Title 26 shall be given priority. Prior to conducting any audit under this subsection, the Commission shall perform an internal review of reports filed by selected committees to determine if the reports filed by a particular committee meet the threshold requirements for substantial compliance with the Act. Such thresholds for compliance shall be established by the Commission. The Commission may, upon an affirmative vote of 4 of its members, conduct an audit and field investigation of any committee which does meet the threshold requirements established by the Commission. Such audit shall be commenced within 30 days of such vote, except that any audit of an authorized committee of a candidate, under the provisions of this subsection, shall be commenced within 6 months of the election for which such committee is authorized.
(c) Statutory provisions applicable to forms and information-gathering activities
Any forms prescribed by the Commission under subsection (a)(1), and any information-gathering activities of the Commission under this Act, shall not be subject to the provisions of section 3512 of Title 44 .
(d) Rules, regulations, or forms; issuance, procedures applicable, etc.
(1) Before prescribing any rule, regulation, or form under this section or any other provision of this Act, the Commission shall transmit a statement with respect to such rule, regulation, or form to the Senate and the House of Representatives, in accordance with this subsection. Such statement shall set forth the proposed rule, regulation, or form, and shall contain a detailed explanation and justification of it.
(2) If either House of the Congress does not disapprove by resolution any proposed rule or regulation submitted by the Commission under this section within 30 legislative days after the date of the receipt of such proposed rule or regulation or within 10 legislative days after the date of receipt of such proposed form, the Commission may prescribe such rule, regulation, or form.
(3) For purposes of this subsection, the term “legislative day” means, with respect to statements transmitted to the Senate, any calendar day on which the Senate is in session, and with respect to statements transmitted to the House of Representatives, any calendar day on which the House of Representatives is in session.
(4) For purposes of this subsection, the terms “rule” and “regulation” mean a provision or series of interrelated provisions stating a single, separable rule of law.
(5)(A) A motion to discharge a committee of the Senate from the consideration of a resolution relating to any such rule, regulation, or form or a motion to proceed to the consideration of such a resolution, is highly privileged and shall be decided without debate.
(B) Whenever a committee of the House of Representatives reports any resolution relating to any such form, rule or regulation, it is at any time thereafter in order (even though a previous motion to the same effect has been disagreed to) to move to proceed to the consideration of the resolution. The motion is highly privileged and is not debatable. An amendment to the motion is not in order, and is not in order to move to reconsider the vote by which the motion is agreed to or disagreed with.
(e) Scope of protection for good faith reliance upon rules or regulations
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person who relies upon any rule or regulation prescribed by the Commission in accordance with the provisions of this section and who acts in good faith in accordance with such rule or regulation shall not, as a result of such act, be subject to any sanction provided by this Act or by chapter 95 or chapter 96 of Title 26.
(f) Promulgation of rules, regulations, and forms by Commission and Internal Revenue Service; report to Congress on cooperative efforts
In prescribing such rules, regulations, and forms under this section, the Commission and the Internal Revenue Service shall consult and work together to promulgate rules, regulations, and forms which are mutually consistent. The Commission shall report to the Congress annually on the steps it has taken to comply with this subsection.
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