If you just filed for election, you better be ready for the campaign finance laws. If you filed your committee (or PAC) in 2009, your annual statement is due February 1 for the 2009 period. This is some free advice from a professional. Know the due dates. Don't wait till the last minute like most people. I see troubles happen on these filings all the time.
I turned my committee report in on the 15th with plenty of time to spare since I was concerned about a computer error. It turned out alright, but I'm not taking any chances. It's my arse on the line, and the last thing I want to happen to me is a fine, my name in the papers, blogs, or AP wires for being late, and loss of credibility on these matters. That bad press can be avoided by playing things by the book.
Here is what not to do. I really don't want to keep picking on Edmund Senkowski, but it's a perfect example of what can happen if there is trouble. For those who don't know, Senkowski ran against Joe Hune in 2004 for state rep in the 47th district where I lived at the time. To say he had campaign finance problems is an understatement. I don't think he was shady. I think his treasurer was lazy and clueless instead. He has thousands of dollars owed in late fees. $6075.00 in fines to be exact. That's more then he had in his campaign. I know at least one democrat was on his back a little for the campaign finance matters during the campaign.
That's why I started a side business that specialized in campaign finance compliance. If you are running for office or want to start a PAC, you need a competent treasurer that will avoid the pitfalls all too common to committees. That treasurer can be myself, or somebody else. I've never been fined in 9 years of treasury experience with campaigns on all levels outside of caucus, presidential, and gubernatorial. I've treasured candidate committees, PAC's, ballot questions, and party committees, along with administrative non-political accounts.
Good luck to those running, and make sure you turn the filings in ASAP to avoid trouble if you haven't already.