The Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) has completed its review of the complaint filed on October 14, 2019. The complaint alleged that Clay Shaya, a write-in candidate for Whatcom County Sheriff in the November 5, 2019 general election, may have violated: (1) RCW 42.17A.205 for failure to file a Candidate Registration (C-1 report) within two weeks of declaring candidacy; (2) RCW 42.17A.700 for failure to file a Personal Financial Affairs Statement (F-1 report) within two weeks of declaring candidacy; and (3) 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.
PDC staff reviewed the allegations; and the applicable statutes, rules, and reporting requirements, to determine whether the record supports a finding of one or more violations.
Mr. Shaya has no filing history with the PDC as a candidate or appointed official and has not been found in violation of PDC laws or rules. He was not successful in the election for Whatcom County Sheriff and the small number of votes he may have received as a write-in candidate appears to have had little impact on the final outcome of the election as the total votes for all write-ins accounted for only 0.17%.
During its review, staff found evidence to suggest that Mr. Shaya was a candidate as defined in RCW 42.17A.005(8) and was required by RCW 42.17A.205 to file a C-1 report and by RCW 42.17A.700 to file an F-1 report, both by no later than September 27, 2019. Despite numerous attempts to illicit a response from Mr. Shaya regarding this evidence, staff has had no communication from him, and the C-1 report and F-1 report have not been received.
Based on our findings staff has determined that, in this instance, failure to timely file the C-1 report as a candidate and a candidate F-1 report covering the previous twelve months, does not amount to a finding of a violation that warrants further investigation.
Pursuant to WAC 390-37-060(1)(d), however, Mr. Shaya received a formal written warning concerning failure to timely file a C-1 report and F-1 report as a candidate for local office in 2019. The formal written warning will included staff’s expectation that Mr. Shaya timely files all required reports as a candidate for state or local office, beginning with the Candidate Registration (C-1 report) and the Personal Financial Affairs Statement (F-1 report) in future years. The Commission will consider the formal written warning in deciding on further Commission action if there are future violations of PDC laws or rules.
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 Written Warning (Resolved 12/18/2019)