July 28, 2017

The Public Disclosure Commission welcomes today’s news that Thurston County Superior Court Judge James Dixon rejected a motion to dismiss two defendants from Washington state’s lawsuit alleging multiple campaign-finance violations against Tim Eyman and associates.
 
As Commission Chair Anne Levinson said when the lawsuit was announced, “Our state’s campaign finance and disclosure laws are premised on the principle that the public deserves to know who is funding political campaigns, who is spending money to influence their vote. Mr. Eyman has an obligation to obey the law. When he, or others, do not, the Public Disclosure Commission and the Attorney General have an obligation on behalf of the public to take all necessary steps to ensure the integrity of our electoral system.”
 

May 16, 2017

The Public Disclosure Commission announced today the appointment of Peter Lavallee as the PDC’s new executive director.

Lavallee, an attorney, currently is the communications director at the Washington State Attorney General’s Office where he works extensively on campaign finance matters. He brings to the PDC broad experience in law, public policy, finance and administration, in both the public and private sectors.

Lavallee will assume his new role in June.

The commission’s vote at Tuesday’s special meeting was unanimous, with commissioners noting that Lavallee’s unique combination of legal and communications expertise will be a good fit for an agency charged with fairly enforcing the law and providing meaningful access to information about money in politics.

May 8, 2017

A Public Disclosure Commission staff investigation led to a $454,000 lawsuit filed today by the Attorney General's office.

The lawsuit alleges that former Grant County Superior Court judge Jerry Moberg and Moses Lake business owner Ken Greene intentionally concealed the fact that they were behind a mailer that targeted a candidate in the Grant County Prosecuting Attorney's 2014 race.

The mailer criticized Garth Dano, a criminal defense attorney who was challenging the incumbent prosecutor. It alleged Dano had “displayed a pattern of disregarding the simplest of laws and adult responsibility,” and urged voters to support the incumbent, Angus Lee.

May 1, 2017

The Public Disclosure Commission has appointed Barbara “BG” Sandahl its acting executive director while it searches for a permanent leader to replace Evelyn Fielding Lopez, who announced in March she was leaving the agency. Fielding Lopez’s last day was April 28.

Sandahl joined the PDC in April as deputy executive director. She has worked in state government for more than two decades, including posts at the Department of Licensing, Secretary of State and most recently the Department of Retirement Systems. A Lean management practitioner, she has focused much of her work on helping agencies reduce waste and increase efficiency. 

 

April 23, 2017

The 2017 regular session freeze period ends Sunday, April 23, at 11:59 p.m. Gov. Jay Inslee has announced he will convene a special session of the Legislature beginning Monday, April 24, triggering a new fundraising freeze at 12:01 a.m. that day until the end of the special session. During a freeze, a legislator or state executive office holder may not solicit or accept campaigns contributions:

April 19, 2017

We are very pleased to let you know that Kim Bradford, a longtime journalist in Tacoma and the Tri-Cities, has joined the Public Disclosure Commission’s management team as the Director of Communications & Outreach.

Kim has been a journalist for more than 20 years, and comes to the PDC from serving as the state and local news editor at The (Tacoma) News Tribune. She was previously on the News Tribune’s editorial board and served as its political editor.  Before joining The News Tribune she was the editorial page editor, an editorial writer and a reporter for the Tri-City Herald.

March 31, 2017

Good morning. I’m Anne Levinson, Chair of the Washington State Public Disclosure Commission. The PDC is the state agency responsible for overseeing and enforcing our state’s campaign finance and disclosure laws. I want to thank the Attorney General for taking the action that he has announced here today.

March 28, 2017

PDC announces transition of Executive Director and names new Assistant Director

OLYMPIA –

The Public Disclosure Commission announced today that its Executive Director, Evelyn Fielding Lopez, will be leaving in May to pursue other interests. 

February 9, 2017

Governor Inslee announces appointment of David Ammons to PDC

OLYMPIA – Gov. Jay Inslee today announced the appointment of David Ammons to the Washington State Public Disclosure Commission. Ammons, who resides in Olympia, was the longest-serving capitol reporter in state history, much of it as president of the press corps.

Ammons was a reporter, columnist and editor for The Associated Press from 1970-2008, covering Washington state government and politics, and breaking news for AP member newspapers and TV and radio stations. He also served as analyst for TV and radio and wrote a statewide column, “Ammons on Politics.” From 2003-2008 he was the on-air host of TVW’s weekly hour-long interview show with Washington newsmakers, “Inside Olympia.”

February 2, 2017

The Public Disclosure Commission is seeking public comment on a **draft** interpretation regarding Seattle Democracy Vouchers.

Background:

In November 2015, Seattle voters approved I-222, which, among other things, adopted a Democracy Voucher Program to be administered by the Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission (SEEC).  Under the Democracy Voucher Program, eligible Seattle residents will receive four $25 campaign contribution vouchers, and residents may give one or more voucher to any eligible candidate.  Candidates who qualify to participate in the program will be able to convert each $25.00 voucher into a $25.00 campaign contribution and may use the money to finance selected campaign activities.

November 22, 2016

In 2014, the Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) found the Food Democracy Action! (FDA) and Food Democracy Action! Yes on I-522 (FDA-WA State PAC) had committed multiple apparent violations of RCW 42.17A and referred the matter to the Washington State Attorney General’s Office for appropriate action.

November 21, 2016, Thurston County Superior Court Judge Gary Tabor ruled that as a result of their violations of state campaign finance disclosure laws, Food Democracy Action! (FDA) must pay a $319,281 penalty (for concealment and late reporting), $2,895.16 in investigation costs, plus attorney fees and trial costs to be determined separately.

November 3, 2016

The Grocery Manufacturers Association was ordered to pay $18 million, the largest campaign finance penalty in US history. 

Anne Levinson, chair of the Washington State Public Disclosure Commission, which enforces our state’s campaign expenditure and disclosure laws, praised the decision: “The Court’s ruling is a major victory for the integrity of elections in our state. The PDC and the Attorney General will not hesitate to take strong enforcement action whenever there is an attempt to conceal campaign donors.”

The Washington State Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) was created and empowered by Initiative of the People to ensure compliance with and equitable enforcement of Washington's disclosure and campaign finance laws. PDC Executive Director Evelyn Fielding Lopez added, “If you are going to engage in politics in Washington, you need to play by Washington’s rules”

July 1, 2016

On June 30, the Public Disclosure Commission released a new online reporting system for lobbyists and their employers.  The new system is a component of the PDC's phased plan to modernize its online presence and provide timelier and more robust public access to information about who lobbies state government, what issues are lobbied, and how much is spent on those efforts.  

June 23, 2016

Judge Anne Levinson (ret.) of Seattle and Judge John Bridges (ret.) of Malaga were elected Chair and Vice-Chair of the Public Disclosure Commission, effective July 1.  The Chair is chosen annually by fellow commissioners, and presides over commission meetings and enforcement matters.

“As Chair, I want to ensure the PDC continually works to provide timelier and more robust public access to campaign finance information, resolve complaints more quickly, and strengthen enforcement,” stated Levinson.       

April 11, 2016

Today the Public Disclosure Commission launches a new website that supports its mission to provide timely and meaningful public access to accurate information.  Replacing the website is the first phase of on ongoing project to overhaul and modernize the PDC's online presence.  The next project phase will focus on improving the public database search functions.

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