Ticket Number: 
Samantha Kersul
Doug Ericksen
Created Date: 
October 12, 2018
Status of Investigations: 
Case Closed with Written Warning

The Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) has completed its review of the complaint filed by Samantha Kersul on October 2, 2018. The Complaint alleged that Senator Doug Ericksen may have violated RCW 42.17A.700 for failure to timely and accurately disclose reportable income on the Personal Financial Affairs Statement (F-1 report) covering calendar year 2016 and RCW 42.17A.320 for failure to identify the sponsor of political advertisement video posted online. PDC staff reviewed the applicable statutes, rules, and reporting requirements; the response provided by Senator Ericksen; and the applicable PDC reports filed by Respondent to determine if your allegations support a finding of one or more violations. Although the Personal Financial Affairs Statement originally submitted for calendar year 2016 did not include all reportable income required, Doug Ericksen’s work for the 2016 Donald Trump Presidential Campaign was widely publicized and available for public review. In regard to the missing sponsor identification in the political advertisement video, the Facebook page and campaign website where the ad was displayed did identify the likely sponsor. Based on our findings staff has determined that, in this instance, failure to timely and accurately disclose all reportable income on the annual F-1 report covering 2016 and failure to include sponsor identification on a political advertisement video, does not amount to an actual violation warranting further investigation. Pursuant to WAC 390-37-060(1)(b), however, Doug Ericksen will receive a formal written warning concerning failure to timely and accurately disclose all sources of income on the Personal Financial Affairs Statement (F-1 report). The formal written warning will include staff’s expectation that Doug Ericksen timely and accurately disclose all reportable income on F1 reports in future years as an elected or appointed official or candidate for public office. The Commission will consider the formal written warning in deciding on further Commission action if there are future violations of PDC laws or rules. PDC staff is also reminding Doug Ericksen about the requirement to identify who pays for or sponsors political advertisements. PDC staff expects that Senator Ericksen will including complete sponsor identification on all political advertisements sponsored or paid for by him in future elections in accordance with PDC laws and 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).