LEGISLATIVE ETHICS BOARD RULE 2: "Measurable Expenditure" defined
Authority for rule: RCW 42.52.180(2)(b) directs the ethics boards to define "measurable expenditure of public funds" in the context of a prohibition on the use of public facilities for campaign purposes.
Explanatory note: The rulemaking directive is limited to subsection (b). In order to fully understand the prohibitions and exceptions contained in this section, refer to the board advisory opinions, especially Advisory Opinion 1995- No. 18.
Text of rule: For purposes of RCW 42.52.180(2)(b), "measurable expenditure" has very limited application. The purpose of the measurable expenditure provision is to make it clear that the exception for statements made at open press conferences or in response to specific inquiries will, at a minimum, be construed to include statements that do not result in measurable expenditures. Consistent with this legislative intent, the definition provided in this rule does not restrict the scope of the exception for statements made at an open press conference or in response to a specific inquiry. The term is construed to include any specific cost, or specific portion of a cost, that can be reasonably determined and attributed to a statement made at an open press conference or in response to a specific inquiry and for the purpose of promotion or opposition of a ballot proposition.
(1) All written statements will result in a measurable expenditure if the writing was prepared using state time or resources such as paper and equipment; or if state resources such as postage were used in delivering the statement.
(2) An oral statement will result in a measurable expenditure if its specific cost, or portion of its cost, can be reasonably determined and attributed to the statement. An oral statement constitutes a measurable expenditure if staff time or state resources were used to prepare the oral statement.