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For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Judith Ingram

September 11, 2009

Julia Queen

  Christian Hilland

Federal Election Commission’s ADR Program Resolves 31 Cases in First Six Months of 2009; Civil Penalties Total $73,900

WASHINGTON – The Federal Election Commission resolved 31 campaign finance enforcement matters through its Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) program during the first six months of 2009.  The Commission assessed civil penalties in 22 cases totaling $73,900. One case was dismissed.

The FEC’s ADR program has proven effective at resolving basic violations quickly and reducing the agency’s costs for completing enforcement actions. Since its inception in October 2000, the ADR program has resolved 483 cases.

The ADR process is designed to reach an expedited resolution with a mutually agreeable settlement that is in compliance with the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended (the Act). For a case to be considered for the ADR program, a respondent must express willingness to engage in the ADR process, agree to set aside the statute of limitations while the case is being resolved and participate in mediation, if appropriate. Settlements reached through ADR participation are submitted to the Commission for final approval.

Negotiated settlement agreements include provisions ranging from paying civil penalties to developing internal control policies to attending FEC conferences providing training in areas such as fundraising and reporting rules. Summaries of the agreements are available on the FEC’s website and at its Public Records Office. Additional information regarding the ADR program is available at http://www.fec.gov/pages/brochures/adr.shtml.

This release contains only summary information.For additional details, please consult publicly available documents for each case in the Enforcement Query System (EQS) on the FEC web site at http://eqs.fec.gov/eqs/searcheqs.


ADR 402

RESPONDENTS:

John Lewis for Congress and George W. Darden, in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

The Reports and Analysis Division (RAD) referred the respondents for failure to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $4,000, send a representative to an FEC conference and develop a compliance manual for staff use.

   

ADR 412

RESPONDENTS:

Larry Kissell for Congress and Walter Ingram Butch Jenkins, III, in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $1,000, develop an operations manual and have a compliance specialist conduct a complete reconciliation of all Committee financial records every month.

   

ADR 427

RESPONDENTS:

Stephanie Tubbs Jones for U.S. Congress

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

The matter was dismissed.

   

ADR 433

RESPONDENTS:

Trupiano for Congress and Kenneth Kranz in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for reporting a negative cash balance on four reports.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a $900 penalty and work with the Commission to terminate.

   

ADR 438

RESPONDENTS:

Republicans for Choice PAC and Ann E.W. Stone in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $2,500 and send a representative to an FEC conference.

   

ADR 443

RESPONDENTS:

21st Century Democrats and Bill Combs in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $2,500 and develop a quarterly compliance training program for Committee staff.

   

ADR 445

RESPONDENT:

ACTBLUE and Matt DeBergalis in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a $12,000 civil penalty, send a representative to an FEC conference and file amended reports.

   

ADR 450

RESPONDENTS:

Missouri Democratic State Committee and Rod Anderson in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to hire an external campaign finance specialist to review reports before they are filed with the Commission, establish an internal tracking system for responding to Requests for Additional Information (RFAIs) and ensure the external campaign finance specialist reviews the responses, send a representative to an FEC conference and have a compliance specialist review the Committee's current financial management plan to ensure consistency with the Act.

   

ADR 451

RESPONDENTS:

Democratic Party of Hawaii and Yuriko Sugimura in her official capacity as treasurer.

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a $5,000 civil penalty, develop a compliance manual for staff reference, conduct staff training on reporting requirements, and institute tracking and response procedures for RFAIs received from the Commission.

   

ADR 453

RESPONDENTS:

Pennsylvania Democratic Party and Ann M. Bursis in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $2,000, send a representative to an FEC conference, retain the services of a compliance specialist, and develop written procedures on tracking and responding to RFAIs.

   

ADR 454

RESPONDENTS:

Montana Democratic Party and Brenda Schye in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $2,500 and continue staff training on a quarterly basis.

   

ADR 459

RESPONDENTS:

New Jersey Republican State Committee and Priscilla B. Anderson in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the Committee for failure to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $3,500, develop Federal Election Activity (FEA) guidelines for staff use, and train Committee staff on accurate and timely FEA reporting obligations.

   

ADR 461

RESPONDENTS:

Schock for Congress and Rachel Honegger in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to certify the results of an internal reconciliation of its reports for the 2008 election cycle and send a representative to an FEC conference.

   

ADR 462

RESPONDENTS:

Texans for Henry Cuellar Congressional Campaign and Rosendo Carranco in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

The Audit Division referred the respondents for excessive contributions and for receipt of contributions from prohibited sources.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $2,500 and send a representative to an FEC reporting conference.

   

ADR 466

RESPONDENTS:

Massachusetts Democratic State Committee-Fed Fund and Eric Turner in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to have an annual reconciliation of all financial records to the reports filed by an independent compliance specialist, develop and maintain a written financial activity flowchart for receipts and disbursements, contract with a compliance specialist to review all reports before they are filed with the Commission, develop and implement an internal controls policy and send a representative to an FEC conference.

   

ADR 468

RESPONDENTS:

Donna Edwards for Congress and Janice Edwards in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to upload financial data into the reporting software on a continuous basis during the reporting period, send a representative to an FEC reporting conference, appoint an Assistant to the Treasurer, and pay a civil penalty of $1,500.

   

ADR 469

RESPONDENTS:

Pro-Life Campaign Committee and Chris Gersten in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failure to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a $5,000 civil penalty and work with Commission staff to terminate the Committee.

   

ADR 471

RESPONDENTS:

Oklahoma State Medical Association PAC and Dr. Johnny Roy in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failure to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $4,000 and work with Commission staff to terminate the PAC.

   

ADR 472

RESPONDENTS:

Oberweis for Congress and Sharon Martin in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to work with RAD staff to terminate the Committee’s reporting obligations.

   

ADR 473

RESPONDENTS:

Allegheny Energy Inc. Federal PAC and Mike Kriner in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to send a representative to an FEC conference, develop a process to trace and respond in a timely manner to RFAIs, develop a compliance manual and appoint an on-site compliance specialist.

   

ADR 474

RESPONDENTS:

Michigan Doctors Political Action Committee-Michigan State Medical Society and Scot F. Goldberg, MD in his official capacity as treasurer.

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $4,000 and appoint a compliance specialist, develop a compliance manual for staff reference, and implement a tracking system to ensure timely and adequate responses to RFAIs.

   
   

ADR 475

RESPONDENTS:

Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party and William Davis in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $3,500, contract with a compliance specialist to supervise accounting functions and FEC reporting, develop a workflow chart detailing duties and responsibilities, and implement a tracking system for RFAIs.

   

ADR 477

RESPONDENTS:

Democratic Party of Virginia and Abbi Easter in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $5,000, hire a compliance and assistant compliance specialist, and send a representative to an FEC conference.

   

ADR 479

RESPONDENTS:

Indiana Democratic Congressional Victory Committee and Linda Buzinec in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for apparent unauthorized disbursement of Committee funds totaling approximately $70,000.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to implement revised Committee Accounting Policies and Procedures including internal controls and sending a representative to an FEC conference.

   

ADR 480

RESPONDENTS:

Sumter Electric Cooperative, Inc. and James P. Duncan

SUBJECT:

The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 180 filed a complaint alleging that respondents violated the Act by improperly soliciting employees to make contributions to the Action Committee for Rural Electrification (ACRE), a separate segregated fund established for certain employees.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to develop and follow written solicitation procedures and policies in compliance with the Act, review the employment status and, where necessary, the address of new SECO employees to determine their eligibility to be solicited, and send written notification to current employees/ACRE contributors on an annual basis reminding them of the eligibility requirements and the employee's responsibility to notify SECO of any changes in their eligibility.

   

ADR 481

RESPONDENTS:

Christine Jennings for Congress and Susan Flynn, in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

The Audit Division referred the respondents for receiving excessive contributions, failure to File 48-Hour Notices, and failure to itemize contributions from political committees.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a $2,500 civil penalty and work with Commission staff to terminate the Committee.

   

ADR 484

RESPONDENTS:

Democratic Party of Arkansas and Karen Garcia in her official capacity as treasurer.

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $3,500, implement a tracking system for RFAIs, formalize a financial procedures and internal control policy, work with RAD to ensure the Committee provides clarification for any outstanding inquiries, and send two representatives to a one-on-one meeting with RAD staff.

   

ADR 485

RESPONDENTS:

Dallas County Democratic Party and Darlene Ewing in her official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for potential occurrences of noncompliance with the Act and disclosure irregularities on reports filed with the Commission in the 2006 election cycle.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $3,500, work with RAD to ensure that all necessary amendments are filed to correct the record, and work with Commission staff to terminate the Committee’s federal committee status.

   

ADR488

RESPONDENTS:

Mississippi Republican Party and Tom Butchart in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity in a timely manner.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $1,000, send the Committee's Treasurer and the individual responsible for recordkeeping and report filing to an FEC conference, and retain the services of an experienced compliance specialist to assist with preparing the FEC reports within 30 days of the effective date of this agreement.

   

ADR 489

RESPONDENTS:

Paul Sawyer for Congress and Col. Herbert P. Frits in his official capacity as treasurer

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to work with Commission staff to terminate the Committee's reporting obligations.

   

ADR 490

RESPONDENTS:

Hank Eng for Congress and Carmen Lamar Arnold in her official capacity as treasurer.

SUBJECT:

RAD referred the respondents for failing to disclose all financial activity.

NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT:

Respondents agreed to pay a civil penalty of $2,000 and work with Commission staff to terminate the Committee’s reporting obligations.

 

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency that administers and enforces federal campaign finance laws. The FEC has jurisdiction over the financing of campaigns for the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, the Presidency and the Vice Presidency. Established in 1975, the FEC is composed of six Commissioners who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

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