PMAA established the Marketer Defense Fund, sometimes referred as the 535 Fund or MDF, as a method to obtain corporate donations for priority projects. The MDF Program is different from PMAA’s Small Business Committee PAC and is designed to supplement PMAA’s lobbying budget to cover priority projects, i.e., some aspects of a political event or for public relations campaigns related to a legislative initiative. Since its creation, the MDF has paid for research projects to defeat regulatory initiatives such as efforts to mandate a 10-micron diesel filter and wetlines retrofit as well as to fight the credit card companies. The MDF also helps pay for representation at the National Conference on Weights and Measures (NCWM), EPA, Department of Transportation, ASTM, PEI and several other organizations. The MDF has saved marketers approximately $1.3 billion which equals $162,500 per marketer.

“ The Marketer Defense Fund is integral to PMAA’s successful defense of petroleum marketers’ interests. These funds are used to support special research and the costs associated with defending our interests at the many legislative and regulatory hearings and meetings. In this time of tremendous regulatory burden, it is vital that we join together. We all need to step up and help; each dollar spent today will return itself to you many times over in savings. Help us help you.”

Sharon Peterson
PMAA Chair 2019
Apple Oil Company, West Haven, Connecticut


A marketer can make corporate contributions by check or credit card to this program and there is no limit on the amount of contribution. All the money is used to support PMAA lobbying goals.

Are contributions to either the MDF deductible?
Contributions to the MDF program are not deductible as a charitable contribution; however, a portion is deductible as a business expense.

Why is only a portion deductible?
In 1993, Congress passed a law advising any money used for lobbying was not deductible for income tax purposes. PMAA is required to annually inform MDF contributors what portion of the total dues is used for lobbying as defined by Congress. That portion is non-deductible.

For additional questions, please contact Susan Isard at (703) 351-8000 today.

PMAA Marketer Defense Fund (MDF) Contribution Amount:

$2,675: $5 for each member of Congress
$2,140: $4 for each member of Congress
$1,605: $3 for each member of Congress
$1,070: $2 for each member of Congress
$535: $1 for each member of Congress