Campaign Finance and the Fair Elections Fund

Get important information on how to find municipal campaign finance data, submit reports, and finance your own campaign.

Data and Records

SearchLight Denver
Campaign finance data at your fingertips

Follow the money: Search campaign finance records for local candidates and ballot issues. Explore the options below to see how SearchLight Denver brings a new dimension of transparency to Denver elections.


Fair Elections Fund

Approved by Denver voters in November 2018, the Fair Elections Fund provides public matching funds to candidates for municipal offices. The fund matches donations of $50 or less at a 9-to-1 ratio for candidates who agree to raise money in lower amounts and take contributions only from individuals and small donor committees. 

Fair Elections Fund candidates must fill out their intent to seek certification through their SearchLight Denver account. Read the Campaign Finance Manual(PDF, 1MB) for more details.

Candidates must also participate in required debates. Get information on the current debate schedule and how to become a debate sponsor: 

Fair Elections Fund Debates


Legacy data, PDF and Excel downloads 

Independent Expenditure and Electioneering Communication Reporting

To report independent expenditure and electioneering communications please complete and submit the following documents:


2021 Denver Taxpayers for Public Education


2019 A Better Denver for All of Us

2019 Colorado's Best People

2019 Friends for Denver's Future

2019 Gibson, Mark

2019 Red White Blue Denver


Submit Campaign Finance Reports

Candidates and organizations seeking to participate in an election in the City and County of Denver must be registered with the Office of the Clerk and Recorder and must file timely campaign finance forms and reports via SearchLight Denver. Campaign finance reporting is governed by Article 3, Section 15 of the Denver Revised Municipal Code.(PDF, 350KB).

To report an alleged violation of Denver campaign finance laws, please file a written complaint with the Denver Elections Division.

Filing Reports

Candidate Committees

Candidate committees must file contributions and expenditures via SearchLight Denver

Issue Committee and PAC Forms

All non-candidate committees require the same documentation to open a committee: A statement of organization and a treasurer affidavit, both found in the committee information section of SearchLight Denver.

The treasurer affidavit must be filled out online, printed, notarized, and mailed or delivered to the Denver Elections Division at 200 W. 14th Avenue, Denver, CO 80204. Committees are encouraged to drop off the treasurer affidavit in person to ensure it is received in the 10-day window.

Reporting Calendar

Online at SearchLight Denver  
Printable Calendar(PDF, 168KB)  

Campaign finance reporting in Denver is governed by Article 3, Section 15 of the Denver Revised Municipal Code.
All forms must be submitted online.

Independent Expenditures and Electioneering

A person who wishes to report an independent expenditure or electioneering communication must create a SearchLight Denver account. All required reports for independent expenditure and electioneering communications will be filed through this portal. 


Contribution Limits

Office Sought Old Contribution Limit New Contribution Limit Participating in Fair Elections Fund Limit
Mayor $3,000 $1,000 $500
City Council At-Large $2,000 $700
Judge $2,000 $700 $350
Clerk and Recorder $2,000
$700 $350
Auditor $2,000
$700 $350
City Council District $1,000 $400 $200


Campaign Finance Manual(PDF, 1MB)

Read for general guidance on raising and spending campaign dollars, as well as how to comply with state statutes, local election law, and Fair Elections Fund rules.

2023 Campaign Finance Calendar(PDF, 168KB)

See important filing and reporting deadlines.

Filer Guide(PDF, 2MB)

A user guide for individuals who will use SearchLight Denver to file campaign finance reports.

Public Guide(PDF, 994KB)

A user guide for individuals who will use SearchLight Denver to search campaign finance reports.