The complaint alleged Ron Muzzall, who was appointed to Washington State Senate from the 10th District in October 2019 and is a candidate for the same position in 2020, violated RCW 42.17A.405 by accepting contributions from an affiliated entity, when aggregated, exceeded the contributions limits for a 2020 legislative candidate of $1,000 each for the primary and general elections.
PDC staff reviewed the allegations; the applicable statutes, rules, and reporting requirements and the response from Mark Lamb, attorney for Ron Muzzall, to determine whether the record supports a finding of one or more violations.
Staff has determined in this instance, the Campaign’s acceptance of over-limit contribution from an affiliated entity does not amount to a finding of a violation that warrants further investigation based on the facts that as of July 14, 2020: (1) the campaign had received contributions totaling $189,539.94 and had $20,588.09 as a cash on hand balance; and (2) the $1,000 contribution received from Washington Forward had not been spent by the Campaign.
Based on these findings, and the fact Muzzall is a first-time candidate and refunded the contribution promptly when notified of the requirement, staff has determined in this instance the failure to include party identification does not amount a violation warranting further investigation.
PDC staff is reminding Ron Muzzall about the importance of acceptance of an over-limit contribution from an affiliated entity in accordance with PDC laws and rules and PDC staff expects the Campaign will adhere to contribution limits for the remainder of the 2020 election cycle and not accept any contributions exceeding the contribution limits in the future, as required by law.
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 10/01/2020)