The intent of the Public Disclosure Law cannot be satisfied unless reports are filed timely and accurately.
The Commission’s general policy for late reports is:
First time in a calendar year – the Commission will issue a warning letter.
Second time in a calendar year – an enforcement hearing is scheduled and the lobbyist is given the opportunity to avoid the hearing by filing the report and paying a $100 penalty.
Third time in a calendar year – an enforcement hearing is scheduled.
Notwithstanding the general policy, an enforcement hearing may be set on the first or second time in the year that a habitually late-filing lobbyist does not file on time.
When the Commission finds a lobbyist in violation of any of the statutory provisions, it may assess a penalty up to $10,000 per violation, unless the parties stipulate otherwise. The Commission also has authority to refer certain violations for criminal prosecution. In addition, the Commission may revoke or suspend a lobbyist’s registration or refer the matter to the Washington State Attorney General for appropriate action. The civil remedies and sanctions available to the court are set out in RCW 42.17A.750.