The Agency

The Office of Campaign and Political Finance is an independent state agency that administers Massachusetts General Law Chapter 55, the campaign finance law, and Chapter 55C, the limited public financing program for statewide candidates. Established in 1973, OCPF is the depository for disclosure reports filed by candidates and political committees under M.G.L. Chapter 55.

Specifically, candidates who report to OCPF are those seeking statewide, legislative, county and district office, Governor's Council candidates and two groups of municipal candidates:

  • Candidates for mayor, city council or alderman in the state's 13 cities with populations of 75,000 or more:
    Boston, Brockton, Cambridge, Fall River, Lawrence, Lowell, Lynn, New Bedford, Newton, Quincy, Somerville, Springfield and Worcester;
    and
  • Candidates for mayor in the state's 33 cities with populations of less than 75,000:
    Agawam, Amesbury, Attleboro, Beverly, Braintree, Chicopee, Easthampton, Everett, Fitchburg, Gardner, Gloucester, Greenfield, Haverhill, Holyoke, Leominster, Malden, Marlboro, Medford, Melrose, Methuen, Newburyport, North Adams, Northampton, Peabody, Pittsfield, Revere, Salem, Taunton, Waltham, West Springfield, Westfield, Weymouth and Woburn.

Other municipal candidates in Massachusetts file their reports with their local election officials, but are still subject to oversight by OCPF.

OCPF receives reports filed by hundreds of candidates and committees, reviews them to ensure accurate disclosure and legal compliance, and, where appropriate, conducts legal reviews of campaign finance activity.


Our Mission

The fundamental purpose of the Massachusetts campaign finance law is to assist in maintaining the integrity of the Commonwealth's electoral system. OCPF's primary mission is to ensure that accurate and complete disclosure of campaign finance activity by those involved in the electoral process is available in a transparent, easily accessible and timely manner and that stakeholders in the process fully understand and comply with the statute. Stakeholders must have full confidence in the integrity of OCPF's procedures in transmittal and disclosure of activity. OCPF is committed to providing easily accessed resources, both in the form of disclosure and education, to all participants seeking to influence the outcome of political campaigns. OCPF is also committed to analyzing developments in campaign finance regulation and reform at the federal level and in other jurisdictions, so that OCPF can suggest legislative amendments to strengthen Chapters 55 and 55C.


The Director

OCPF is headed by a director who is appointed by a bi-partisan commission that is made up of the Secretary of the Commonwealth, the chairs of the Democratic and Republican State Committees and the dean of a law school who is appointed by the Governor. The Director serves a six-year term and is subject to reappointment.

Michael J. Sullivan, the current director, was appointed to his fourth term in 2012.

Past Directors:
Mary F. McTigue(1988 - 1994)
Dennis J. Duffin(1982 - 1988)
Charles J. Doherty(1976 - 1982)
Norm Gleason(1974 - 1976)

Reporting and Disclosure

OCPF receives and maintains disclosure reports from a variety of state, county and municipal candidates and political committees. These reports, as well as other related documents and correspondence, are available for public inspection at our office in Room 411 of the John W. McCormack Building, One Ashburton Place, Boston, MA 02108, during regular business hours, which are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

A substantial number of candidates file their campaign finance reports electronically, through the office's Electronic Filing System.

Other reports, such as reports of casino ballot question spending, are scanned and made available for viewing on our website.