Case #27995
Respondent name: Jason Bennett
Complainant name: Gary Meisner

The Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) has completed its review of the complaint filed by Gary Meisner on November 2, 2017. The complaint alleged that Everett Firefighters for Citizen Safety (Sponsored by IAFF Local 46) [the Committee], a single election political committee in support of Judy Tuohy for Mayor of Everett, may have violated RCW 42.17A.235 for failure to timely and accurately file Monetary Contribution reports (C-3 reports) and Summary Full Campaign Contribution and Expenditure reports (C-4 reports), disclosing contributions and expenditures undertaken by the Campaign; RCW 42.17A.240 for failure to accurately and completely disclose debts and obligations; and RCW 42.17A.305 for failure to accurately and completely file Independent Spending & Electioneering Communications reports (C-6 reports), disclosing electioneering communications in support of Candidate Tuohy.

PDC staff reviewed the allegations; the applicable statutes, rules, and reporting requirements; the response provided by the Committee; the applicable PDC reports filed by Respondent; and queried the Respondent’s data in the PDC contribution and expenditure database, to determine whether the record supports a finding of one or more violations.

It appears that the Committee timely filed its C-3, C-4, and C-6 reports during the 2017 election campaign, disclosing all of its financial activity in good faith. As the C-4 and C-6 reports require different information and levels of detail, it created an appearance that the Committee had received funds and made expenditures directly from its bank account, when in fact there was no activity through the Committee’s account until after the election.

Based on our findings staff has determined that, in this instance, failing to report the dates that debts were incurred and pledges were made on the C-4 as the dates that expenditures were made and funding was received on the C-6, does not amount to an actual violation warranting further investigation.

PDC staff is reminding Everett Firefighters for Citizen Safety (Sponsored by IAFF Local 46) about the importance of accurately tracking and reporting the dates that expenditures advanced by agents of the committee were made, ensuring that these dates are reflected properly on both C-4 and C-6 reports. In the future, PDC staff expects consistent reporting of dates between C-4 and C-6 reports so that the public may follow the information concerning debts and pledges on the C-4 reports to the expenditures and funding sources on the C-6 reports. 

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

Disposition: Case Closed with Reminder (Resolved 06/27/2019)
Date opened: 12/01/2017
Area of Law: RCW 42.17A.235, RCW 42.17A.240, RCW 42.17A.305

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