Grading State Disclosure 2003 Logo Graphic

N e w . H a m p s h i r e


golden bar divider

Campaign Disclosure Law
Electronic Filing Program
Disclosure Content Accessibility
Online Contextual & Technical Usability

Grading Process green cube Subcategory Weighting green cube Methodology green cube Glossary

golden bar divider

The State of Disclosure in New Hampshire

With an overall score of F, New Hampshire's campaign finance disclosure program has significant room for improvement. The state has a better than average campaign finance disclosure law, but has weaknesses in Electronic Filing, Disclosure Content Accessibility and Online Contextual and Technical Usability.

New Hampshire law requires candidates to file campaign finance statements twice in non-election years and five times in election years. Information about contributors who give $25 or more must be disclosed; a contributor's employer and occupation must be reported for contributions greater than $100. Last-minute contributions of $500 or more must be disclosed within 24 hours. All expenditures must be reported, but subvendor information is not required. Independent expenditures and last-minute independent expenditures must be reported before the election. New Hampshire has voluntary electronic filing for statewide and legislative candidates.

New Hampshire has a lot of room for improvement in its efforts to make campaign finance data accessible to the public. While it does not offer searchable databases of contributions or expenditures, it does scan paper records and post them to the site in a timely manner. Unfortunately, the reports that appear on the web site are often incomplete, missing part of the street address, city or zip code. Also, the agency has changed from offering .gif images of campaign finance reports (1998 - 2001) to offering .tiff images (2002 filings), which require the user to download software in order to view the reports. The benefit of the .tiff is that it allows for a higher quality image, but the disadvantage is that the file type is not usually supported by standard Internet browsers; either way the public is looking at scanned images of paper-filed, mostly handwritten documents. In addition, reports were not available on the site for the current governor, even though the former governor's reports, as well as those for other current statewide office holders, were available. No campaign finance information is on the site for state legislative candidates.

The state could also improve the usability of its disclosure web site. The site's contextual information gives the public some understanding of campaign financing in New Hampshire, but could be better. The site does not have lists of the total amounts raised and spent by state candidates in New Hampshire, there is no explanation of what reports can be found online and there are no instructions about how to use it. In addition, New Hampshire's web site failed the usability test. Only two out of six usability testers found the disclosure site and it took more than eight minutes for each to get there. No usability tester was able to find individual contributor information.

Disclosure Agency: Department of State
Disclosure Web Site:

Back to the Grading State Disclosure home page

View another state's summary:


This page was first published on September 17, 2003
| Last updated on September 17, 2003
copyright ©
Campaign Disclosure Project. All rights reserved.