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Campaign finance panel fines DeKalb commissioners Sutton, Watson

Campaign finance panel fines DeKalb commissioners Sutton, Watson
August 9, 2011 --

DeKalb County Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton failed to disclose more than $101,000 in contributions to her campaigns in 2006 and 2008. For that, she agreed Friday to pay a $2,500 fine. Then-state Rep. Stan Watson, a fellow commissioner, also agreed to a $1,500 fine Friday for raising campaign money while the state Legislature was in session.

Why do politicians give each other campaign cash?

Why do politicians give each other campaign cash?
March 14, 2011 --

March 14, 2011 — Georgia’s ethics reformers have a bill to push, but they’ll be pushing uphill if they want to restrict politicians giving large sums to each other, a practice sometimes described as “empire-building.” A case in point? Three top Senate Republicans, as they maneuvered to strip Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle last year of some of his power, donated $45,000 to 12 Senate freshmen. Caucus Chair Bill Cowsert said the contributions were part of his obligation as a party leader, not an effort to sway votes.

Ethics panel slaps ex-speaker’s wrist, waffles on some donation limits

Ethics panel slaps ex-speaker's wrist, waffles on some donation limits
August 17, 2010 --

Former House Speaker Glenn Richardson must pay a $500 fine, but his political fund may keep $219,915 that was transferred improperly from his campaign account last year, the State Ethics Commission ruled today. The panel also dismissed a separate case, ruling that state law may place no limits on campaign contributions from one candidate to another.

Hudgens’ campaign returns $106K improperly shifted from Senate race

Hudgens' campaign returns $106K improperly shifted from Senate race
June 30, 2010 --

Ralph Hudgens‘ bid for Georgia insurance commissioner has returned $106,600 in contributions that were transferred improperly last year from his state Senate campaign fund. Hudgens said he’s signed a consent order to resolve an ethics complaint on the matter that would not impose a financial penalty. “No fines, no anything,” he said.  UPDATE: Maria Sheffield, another Republican running for insurance commissioner, today attacked Hudgens for his handling of the improper transfer.

Rome insurers challenge ethics panel’s Oxendine subpoenas

Rome insurers challenge ethics panel's Oxendine subpoenas
June 2, 2010 --

Two Rome-based insurance companies have gone to court to challenge investigators’ demand for documents related to $120,000 in potentially improper contributions to Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine’s bid for governor. State Mutual Insurance Co. and Admiral Life Insurance Co. of America contend the State Ethics Commission overreached its authority when it subpoenaed the records. They also […]

Top 10 ways NOT to spend your campaign money

Top 10 ways NOT to spend your campaign money
May 19, 2010 --

#10: Renewing your medical license …

A tip on making ends meet in a tough economy: Find ways to get someone else to pay your personal expenses. That’s how U.S. Rep. Phil Gingrey does it. In November, his campaign fund paid $400 to the State of Georgia Medical Board for “renewal fees.” UPDATE: The congressman conceded Thursday that his campaign had made an “administrative error” and said he had reimbursed his campaign. Click here and WXIA-TV’s Jon Shirek will tell you all about it.

4th District hopeful Connie Stokes owes herself $70K

4th District hopeful Connie Stokes owes herself $70K
April 28, 2010 --

Connie Stokes has been an official candidate for Congress for two days, and she already owes herself almost $70,000. That total includes a $42,700 debt carried over from her 2004 run for Congress, plus obligations to pay her for services as campaign manager and campaign consultant and for yard signs, bumper stickers and travel, according to her campaign’s March financial disclosure.

Kasim Reed’s campaign donations have a price

Kasim Reed's campaign donations have a price
March 9, 2010 --

On New Year’s Eve, Mayor-elect Kasim Reed could celebrate knowing his campaign fund, even after spending $2.5 million to win the job, had a six-figure bank balance. Much of it came from lawyers, contractors and consultants with money on their minds. Their support underscores the inherent tension in soliciting political donations from people looking to do a little business once their candidates take office. “You’re asking people to be awfully gullible to believe all those contributions are being made out of civic interest and public pride,” said Atlanta attorney Emmet Bondurant.

Pitts may settle 8-year ethics dispute over campaign loans

Pitts may settle 8-year ethics dispute over campaign loans
January 21, 2010 --

On the eve of the 2001 Atlanta mayoral election, candidate Robb Pitts’ campaign bounced a $45,000 check. Several campaign officials made loans to cover the check in amounts far exceeding limits on political contributions. Pitts, now a Fulton County commissioner, may be about to settle ethics charges stemming from the loans. But will he have to pay back the money?

Hudgens faces ethics charge over cash transfer

Hudgens faces ethics charge over cash transfer
January 15, 2010 --

An ethics complaint could cost Sen. Ralph Hudgens much of his fund-raising edge in the race for Georgia insurance commissioner. Last month, Hudgens shifted $106,000 from his Senate re-election race to his campaign for the insurance job. The State Ethics Commission declared in a 2008 advisory opinion that candidates can’t do it that way, but Hudgens reportedly doesn’t plan to return the money.

Oct. 20

October 20, 2009 --

Common Cause pushes plan to curb ‘pay-to-play’ Ex-contractor to seek $150 million from DOT Mailing interest checks cost state $100K Taxpayer dollars being used to tout Marietta parks bond? Rockdale Hospital Authority sues Goldman Sachs McKinney fined $6,000 for campaign fund violations Buie surrenders to Albany police Clayton school board member loses motion to remove […]

FEC clears congressman, blogger of violating campaign laws

FEC clears congressman, blogger of violating campaign laws
October 12, 2009 --

The Federal Election Commission has issued a “no reason to believe” decision in a complaint against U.S. Rep. David Scott, political blogger Andre Walker and Scott’s campaign treasurer, Hammerin’ Hank Aaron. The complaint, filed in March, charges Walker blogged favorably about Scott’s re-election campaign without disclosing $2,950 in payments from the campaign. The FEC’s general counsel accepted Scott’s explanation that the money was for maintaining the campaign Web site and no other purpose.