STATE OF MINNESOTA
CAMPAIGN FINANCE AND PUBLIC DISCLOSURE BOARD
FINDINGS IN THE MATTER OF A COMPLAINT REGARDING
THE LEWIS FOR STATE SENATE COMMITTEE
On October 10, 2000, John Gibbs, on behalf of the (Bill) Belanger Volunteer Committee ("Complainant"), filed a complaint with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board ("Board") alleging that the (Cheryl) Lewis for State Senate Committee ("Committee"), may have violated certain provisions of Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 10A.
The complaint is based on the Committees Report of Receipts and Expenditures covering January 1, through August 21, 2000, and an Affidavit of Contributions filed on September 1, 2000, by Cheryl Lewis, candidate. The Complainant states that the Committee reported receiving contributions from individuals totaling $715 between January 1, and August 21, 2000, but that it had received contributions from individuals totaling $3,000 as of September 1, 2000. The Complainant feels that it is unlikely that at least 46 additional contributions of $50 or more were received between August 22, and September 1, 2000. Therefore, the Complainant believes the Affidavit of Contributions submitted by Cheryl Lewis may be inaccurate.
The evidence submitted by the Complainant consisted of copies of certain pages of the Committees Report of Receipts and Expenditures covering January 1, through August 21, 2000, and the Affidavit of Contributions filed by Cheryl Lewis, candidate, on September 1, 2000.
By letter dated November 28, 2000, Cheryl Lewis, candidate, responded to the complaint. Ms. Lewis states that during the last nine days of the required period to establish the necessary funds, she and her husband telephone family, friends, volunteers and neighbors for donations. She further states that they went door to door to collect some of the contributions and additional funding was received in the mail. She also states that copies of the contributions and bank deposits will verify that the required amount was received within the time limit.
This Board considered the matter in executive session on December 12, 2000. No one appeared on behalf of either party.
Based on the record before it, the Board issues the following:
STATEMENT OF THE EVIDENCE
1. The Lewis for State Senate Committee is a principal campaign committee registered with the Board.
2. Minn. Stat. 10A.025, subd. 2, provides, in part, that any statement filed under this chapter must be signed and certified as true by the individual required to file the report. The statute further provides that any person who signs and certifies to be true a statement knowing it contains false information is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
3. On September 1, 2000, Cheryl Lewis, candidate filed a notarized Affidavit of Contributions with the Board certifying that the Committee received contributions totaling $3,000, counting no more than the first $50 from any individual contributor.
Based on the above Statement of the Evidence, the Board makes the following:
FINDINGS CONCERNING PROBABLE CAUSE
There is no probable cause to believe that the Lewis for State Senate Committee violated the Minnesota Statutes Chapter 10A by failing to obtain $3,000 by September 1, 2000, to qualify for public subsidy in the 2000 election year.
Based on the above Findings Concerning Probable Cause, the Board issues the following:
The complaint regarding the Lewis for State Senate Committee is dismissed and the record in this matter is hereby entered into the public record in accordance with Minn. Stat. 10A.02, subd. 11.
Dated: December 12, 2000
Will Fluegel, chair
Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board