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The City of Portland, Oregon

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City of Portland

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2.16.170 Hearings.

(Amended by Ordinance Nos. 189336 and 189531, effective June 28, 2019.)

A.  Purpose. The purpose of this Section is to provide persons or political committees adversely affected by administrative determinations made under this Chapter with a timely, effective, and impartial appeal and review of the determination by a Hearings Officer or entity, to be recommended by the Open and Accountable Elections Commission and appointed by the Director.

B.  The Director may contract with an entity, including but not limited to a vendor or a government body, to conduct hearings on behalf of the Program.

C.  The Hearings Officer or entity conducting hearings may delay a hearing to 21 days after the request for the hearing is filed or 3 weeks prior to the relevant election, whichever is sooner.

D.  Types of Hearings.

1.  Certification Hearings. A candidate who has received a determination denying certification or an opponent of a candidate who has been granted certification may challenge a certification decision with a written request for reconsideration as outlined in Subsection 2.16.170 E. and, if still dissatisfied, a written request for a hearing as outlined in Subsection 2.16.170 D.

2.  Matching Fund Hearings. A candidate who has received a determination granting or denying public contribution matching or an opponent of a candidate who has been granted public contribution matching may challenge the public contribution matching decision by filing a written request for reconsideration as outlined in Subsection 2.16.170 E. and, if still dissatisfied, a written request for a hearing as outlined in Subsection 2.16.170 D.

3.  Penalty Hearings. A candidate, person or political committee who has received a notice of proposed penalty from the Director may challenge the proposed penalty by filing a written request for reconsideration as outlined in Subsection 2.16.170 E. and, if still dissatisfied, a written request for a hearing as outlined in Subsection 2.16.170 D.

E.  Requests for Hearings.

1.  The written request for a hearing shall be filed not later than:

a.  7 days after the mailing of the certification reconsideration decision or

b.  7 days after the mailing of the proposed penalty reconsideration decision.

c.  7 days after the mailing of the notification of the matching reconsideration decision:

(1)  For an opponent of the candidate who requested the public contributions, 7 calendar days after the mailing of the notification of the reconsideration decision.

(2)  For an opponent of the candidate who requested the public contributions, 7 calendar days after the mailing information about the matching determination from the Director, which will be provided upon request.

2.  The request shall be filed pursuant to forms and procedures published on the Program website. The written request shall contain either a copy of, or a full and complete description of, the decision or determination appealed and a statement of grounds upon which it is contended that the decision or determination is invalid, unauthorized, or otherwise improper, together with such other information as the Director may require by rule.

3.  No person or political committee other than those described in Subsection 2.16.170 C. may be a party to any hearing conducted under this Section.

F.  Request for reconsideration.

1.  The written request for reconsideration must be filed with the Director not later than:

a.  For certification determination, within 7 calendar days after the date of determination by the Director.

b.  For a proposed penalty, within 7 calendar days after the date the Director imposes the penalty.

c.  For a matching determination,

(1)  For the candidate who requested the public contribution, within 7 calendar days of the determination by the Director.

(2)  For the opponent of the candidate who requested the public contribution or a member of the public, within 7 calendar days after the date of the determination, which is available upon written request filed with the Director.

d.  The Director must provide a final response to the request for reconsideration within 10 business days of receiving the request.

G.  Conduct of Hearings.

1.  As provided in Section 2.16.130, the Open and Accountable Elections Commission shall recommend to the Director for appointment a panel of hearings officers, or an outside entity to perform the hearings function, to review cases and make determinations under this Section.

2.  The Director shall designate and appoint hearings officers or an entity, including but not limited to a vendor or another government body, based upon the recommendations of the Open and Accountable Elections Commission.

3.  Written requests for hearings shall be filed within the deadlines established in Subsection 2.16.170 D. A hearing must be held within the timelines established in Subsection 2.16.170 F.4.

4.  The date set for hearings under this Section shall be:

a.  Not later than 7 days after the request for a certification or public contribution matching hearing is filed as outlined in Subsections 2.16.170 D.1.a. and c.; or

b.  Not more than 14 days after the request for a penalty hearing is filed as outlined in Subsection 2.16.170 D.1.b.

5.  Notice.

a.  In the case of certification hearings requested under Subsection 2.16.170 D.1.a.:

(1)  Notice of receipt of a request for a hearing, together with a copy of the request, shall be given to all other candidates for the same office. The notice shall be sent not later than one business day after the request is filed.

(2)  Notice of the hearing, together with a copy of the request for a hearing, shall be given to the Person who requested the hearing and all other candidates for the same office. The notice shall be sent not later than one business day after the date is set for the hearing. The notice shall specify the time, date, and place set for the hearing.

(3)  The notices required in Subsections 2.16.170 F.5.a.(1) and (2) may be combined.

b.  In the case of penalty hearings requested under Subsection 2.16.170 D.1.b., notice shall be given of the hearing to the person or political committee who requested the hearing. The notice shall be sent not later than one business day after the date is set for the hearing under Subsection 2.16.170 F.4. The notice shall specify the time, date, and place set for the hearing.

c.  Notices may be given by any method or combination of methods which, under the circumstances, is reasonably likely to apprise the parties of the hearing. Notice may be given by United States mail, phone, e-mail or other method authorized by rule. If notice is given by mail, such notice shall be deemed given and received three days (Sundays and holidays not included) after the notice is deposited in the United States mail. The failure of any Person to receive actual notice of the proceeding shall not invalidate the hearing or any determination, decision, or order of the hearings officer.

6.  The hearings shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 22.10, except as otherwise provided in this Section.

H.  Order of the Hearings Officer.

1.  The hearings officer shall issue an order not later than 5 business days after a certification public contribution matching or penalty hearing.

2.  In the case of a certification hearing, the hearings officer may uphold or revoke the certification.

3.  In the case of a public contribution matching hearing, the hearings officer may uphold or revoke public contribution matching, or modify a public contribution matching decision by revoking some or all public contribution matching or granting additional public contribution matching.

4.  In the case of a penalty hearing, the hearings officer may uphold, revoke or modify the penalty.

5.  The order of the hearings officer is a final decision of the City.

6.  Judicial review of an order made under this Section shall be as provided in Title 22.

I.  Return of Funds and Payment of Cost of Hearing.

1.  If the certification of a candidate is revoked following a hearing under this Section, the candidate shall return to the Director an amount of money equal to all revenues distributed to the candidate from the Open and Accountable Elections Fund after the date the candidate was certified, plus interest on the total amount of revenues received at a rate of 12 percent per annum, in addition to the penalty and interest on the penalty.

2.  If public contribution matching is revoked, the candidate shall return to the Director an amount of money equal to the amount of revoked public contribution matching distributed to the candidate from the Open and Accountable Elections Fund, plus interest on the total amount of public contribution matching received at a rate of 12 percent per annum.

3.  If the hearings officer or a court finds that a request for a hearing under this Section was made frivolously or to cause delay or hardship, the hearings officer or the court may require the person who filed the request for a hearing to pay costs of the hearings officer, court and opposing parties, and attorney fees of the opposing parties, if any.