Sunday, June 12, 2005

Taxpayer's League and the FPPC Fiasco

Disclosure again: I'm webmaster for the Humboldt Taxpayer's League

Not to keep focusing on the Taxpayer's League but I do think something keeps coming up that needs to be addressed:

Some eyebrows were raised last election cycle when the League came out opposing Measure L and they didn't properly file some forms with the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC). Apparently they didn't keep accurate records of who gave how much money to the League which was required to be reported since they were using that money in a campaign. The issue comes up again in Saturday's Times Standard saying the League may have violated its bylaws by not keeping accurate records. So what?

It does indeed look bad for an organization that expects accurate accounting from government agencies to not be keeping accurate records itself. But, so what? That should only be of concern to the League's members. A membership list was available to those who want to know who's in the League. If it's not accurate enough, don't vote the way the League proposes, if you make decisions simply on fincancial disclosure issues.

Some critics at the time seemed to be infering that there were nefarious reasons for the League not disclosing who gave what to the organization being akin to the same sort of thing that went on in that hit campaign against Chris Kerrigan in which the "investors" hid their identities.

It wasn't the same sort of thing. It's hard to keep records in a volunteer organization. It's hard to keep up with all the does and don't of campaign finance law. Heck, even experienced politicians run afoul of these laws every now and then. There have been candidates that dropped out of races when they realized all the campaign reporting requirements. The only thing the League can be blamed for is not keeping more accurate records than they should have, perhaps even if they weren't involved in campaign activity.

Say what you want about the League's lawsuit against the developers, but leave the campaign reporting fiasco out of it.


At 10:27 PM, Anonymous Jaime said...

nomination for new president of the Taxpayer's League: Fred Mangels

At 8:48 AM, Blogger Fred said...

I never even show up for the meetings, though.


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