Case #27470
Respondent name: Gary Cronce
Complainant name: Jason Coots

The Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) has completed its review of the complaint filed on November 8, 2017. Your complaint alleged that Gary Cronce, incumbent City of Shelton Mayor, may have violated RCW 42.17A.555 by using his city owned computer, email address and time as Mayor, to send and receive emails soliciting campaign contributions for his 2015 mayoral campaign and campaign contributions for the 2015 city commissioner campaign of Kathleen McDowell.

Gary Cronce completed a Statement of Understanding (SOU) and paid a $450 civil penalty in accordance with WAC 390-37-143 (Brief Enforcement Penalty Schedule), acknowledging three (3) violations of RCW 42.17A.555, two related to this complaint and one related to PDC Case 26474. The penalty assessed was based on: (1) a $300 penalty, $150 each for the two acknowledged violations of RCW 42.17A.555 for using his city owned computer, email address, and his time to solicit campaign contributions for his 2015 Mayoral campaign, and for soliciting campaign contributions for the 2015 City Commissioner campaign of Kathleen McDowell; and (2) a $150 penalty for the acknowledged violation of RCW 42.17A.555 for advocating for votes in opposition to Proposition 1 during the October 16, 2017 regular City Commission public meeting.

While the email solicitations made by Mayor Cronce for his 2015 Mayoral Campaign, and for the 2015 City Commissioner Campaign of Kathleen McDowell, were not permitted under RCW 42.17A.555, Mayor Cronce’s response indicates that his activity was limited in nature and a result of his limited knowledge regarding the specific prohibitions under RCW 42.17A.555. However, PDC staff reminded Mayor Cronce about the prohibitions and restrictions found in RCW 42.17A.555 and to be sure to follow them in the future. 

Based on this information, and the resolution via SOU, the PDC finds that no further action is warranted and has dismissed this matter in accordance with RCW 42.17A.755(1).

Disposition: Resolved through Statement of Understanding (Resolved 08/14/2019)
Date opened: 11/14/2017
Area of Law: RCW 42.17A.555

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