It may have seemed quiet the last few weeks, but a lot has been happening here behind the scenes. The paperwork has been filed with the supervisor of elections, a campaign treasurer has been appointed and our bank account is open.
Surprisingly, the bank account was the most difficult step of all. It took 6 appointments with 3 different banks to get everything finished. If you ever need to open a campaign account, I’d recommend you bring plenty of patience to every appointment. It might take a little time for them to figure out what they actually need and get their computer system to cooperate.
If you’re thinking of running for office, here’s what I learned from the experience:
- DO – Go to your supervisor of elections office, FIRST. These offices are filled with exceptionally helpful and knowledgeable people who are more than happy to help get you started.
- DON’T – Try to figure it out yourself online. Campaign rules are complicated and vary between every elected office. Save yourself the time you’ll spend trying to understand the fine print and go talk to someone in person. You won’t regret it.
- DO – Put a lot of thought into who you ask to be your campaign treasurer. Find that friend who doesn’t just abide by the rules, but takes the time to thoroughly learn and understand them.
- DON’T – Pick your BFF who will rubber stamp everything you do. Campaign finance laws are not made to be broken or bent. Have a treasurer who will take the job seriously.
- DO – Exercise patience and seek advice. The first two banks I visited didn’t even offer campaign accounts. Finally, Bank of America was able to offer me an account but it took 4 visits to actually get the account opened. In hindsight, it would have saved a lot of time if I’d reached out to someone else who was running for local office and asked about the bank they were using. My referral would be to Nicole at Bank of America on Cortez Rd. She’s now an expert on campaign accounts. Thanks for all of your hard work, Nicole!
Now it’s time to introduce my Campaign Treasurer!
Meet Brittany! She’s a Bradenton native and local school teacher, which makes her an expert at learning and enforcing the rules. People often ask if we’re related and, while we aren’t technically family, I would gladly accept her as a sister.
Welcome to the team!