The Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) has completed its review of the complaint Cody Hart filed on September 30, 2019. The complaint alleged that James Wengler (Respondent), a board member for the Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors may have violated RCW 42.17A.635 for indirectly lobbying the legislature outside of authorized channels for public agency lobbying; and RCW 42.17A.640 for failure to report a grass roots lobbying campaign.
PDC staff reviewed the allegations; the applicable statutes, rules, and reporting requirements; and the response provided by the Respondent, to determine whether the record supports a finding of one or more violations.
Based on our findings staff has determined that, in this instance, soliciting public employees to lobby the legislature outside of the proper official channels and in the proper performance of their official duties does not amount to a finding of a violation that warrants further investigation.
PDC staff is reminding James Wengler about the importance of avoiding the expenditure of public funds, whether directly or indirectly, to lobby the legislature outside of the proper official channels and the proper performance of official duties. PDC staff expects that James Wengler will avoid using publicly funded email and telephone services to solicit personal support or opposition for legislation in the future.
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 11/12/2019)