STATE OF MINNESOTA

CAMPAIGN FINANCE AND PUBLIC DISCLOSURE BOARD

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Wednesday, September 17, 2003

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Ladyslipper Conference Room

Ground Level, Centennial Office Building

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MINUTES

 

Meeting was called to order by Chair Miller.

 

Members present:  Ashmore, Fluegel, Milbert, Miller, Pauly

Others present:  Olson, Sigurdson, Swanson, Drilias, staff; Huwe, counsel

 

Mr. Kelley notified staff he would be unable to attend the meeting.

 

MINUTES  (August 27, 2003)

 

Mr. Fluegel's MOTION:       To approve the August 27, 2003, minutes as drafted.

 

Vote on MOTION:       Unanimously passed.

 

CHAIR'S REPORT

 

Board Meeting Schedule

 

Next meeting is scheduled for October 22, 2003.

 

Report on Public Meetings

 

Board members and staff who attended the public meetings on September 9th and 10th for public comment on the proposed fee schedule agreed that both meetings went well.  About 50 individuals attended the meetings and provided valuable comments and suggestions. 

 

Ratification of Amended Findings

 

Complaint Regarding Tim Pawlenty and the (Tim) Pawlenty for Governor Committee (see August 27th minutes) - Following approval and signature of the findings approved at the August 27th Board meeting in the matter of Tim Pawlenty and the (Tim) Pawlenty for Governor Committee, staff became aware that Elam Baer was mistakenly mentioned in the Evidentiary Finding.  The findings were amended, signed by Vice Chair Fluegel, and provided to Governor Pawlenty. 

 

Ms. Pauly's MOTION:            To ratify the action of staff and Vice Chair Fluegel in the findings in the matter of Tim Pawlenty and the (Tim) Pawlenty for Governor Committee.

 

Vote on MOTION:            Unanimously passed by four members (Miller abstained).

 

FEE SCHEDULE

 

Mark Scipioni, Management Consultant with the Department of Administration, Management Analysis Division, described how the fee schedule study is being conducted and how future costs will be estimated.  The Board will review the cost analysis in early October and a summary will be provided to the public.  The Board may meet by teleconference on October 9th at 3:30 p.m. to review the cost analysis.  

 

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT

 

Ms. Olson submitted the following written report:

 

Staff Activities

 

Second certified letters were sent to 61 lobbyists and 111 lobbyist principals on September 5th who had not paid the fee.  The letters stated that a late filing fee of up to $100 began accruing on August 29th and a civil penalty of up to $1,000 may be assessed beginning September 17th.   Since these fees are new, there has been confusion about who has to pay.  As of yesterday, 61 lobbyists and 108 lobbyist principals have not paid the required $50 fee. 

 

Lobbyists have paid total fees of $135,550 and lobbyist principals have paid fees totaling $56,500. 

 

As of yesterday, all but 80 lobbyist reports due July 15th had been filed.

 

Ms. Olson will be in Austin, Texas, from September 22nd to the 24th to attend the annual Council on Governmental Ethics Laws conference.

 

From September 23rd through September 25th the Board's website will be featured on the State of Minnesota's home page.  Staff is working to bring the site up-to-date. 

 

Staff is working on the Lobbyist Disbursement Summary.  We will incorporate the information from the March 15th Annual Report of Lobbyist Principals into the summary for the first time.

 

On October 1st Ms. Olson will present information at a Continuing Legal Education seminar for attorneys from the Revisor of Statutes Office.  Legislative employees are prohibited from accepting gifts from lobbyists and lobbyist principals.

 

Mr. Kelley and Ms. Olson have been asked to present information to the Minnesota Government Relations Council on October 21st.  The Coucil is interested in the fee structure process.

 

Fee Structure Process

 

Following the August Board meeting, the Fee Study Internal Guidelines were posted on the Board's website and an e-mail was sent to all ‘Interested Persons'.

 

Staff continues work on determining the percentage of Board resources used in each of the named programs.

 

Representative Jim Davnie asked the Board to reconsider which lobbyists are required to pay the fee.  Ms. Olson checked with Counsel Huwe early in the process and it was agreed that those lobbyists who Representative Davnie thought should not have to pay the fee, actually do have to pay the fee. 

 

Personnel

 

Ms. Olson introduced Christine Eliasson, the Board's new receptionist.  Ms. Eliasson began work with the Board on September 2nd. 

 

Mr. Sigurdson reviewed the performance of Leah Drilias, Compliance Officer.  Ms. Drilias' performance this past year has been excellent and she will receive a step increase and the achievement award of $1,000 available under the terms of the MAPE contract.

 

Mr. Sigurdson reviewed the performance of John Nesbitt.  Mr. Nesbitt's performance meets standards and he will receive a step increase under the terms of the MAPE contract.

 

Enforcement Report

 

Discussion Items

 

Request for refund of Lobbyist Registration Fee and Principal Registration Fee

 

David Markle, lobbyist, Artists, Composers and Authors Caucus - Mr. Markle, the sole lobbyist for the Artists, Composers and Authors Caucus, requested that the Board allow him to terminate his registration as a lobbyist, retroactive to December 31, 2002.  Mr. Markle stated that no lobbying or lobbying expenditures occurred after December 31, 2002.  Mr. Markle further requested that the Board refund his $50 lobbyist registration fee and the Artists, Composers, and Authors Caucus' $50 principal registration fee.  Mr. Markle's registration with the Board was terminated on July 31, 2003.  No motion was made.

 

Authorization to publish on the Board's website a list of lobbyists and principals who have not yet paid their registration fees due August 1, 2003

 

At its meeting of August 28, 2002, the Board approved listing the names of clients who fail to timely file reports on the Board's website.  Board members may wish to consider also publishing the names of lobbyists and principals who have not paid their registration fees.  Two certified letters have been sent to each lobbyist and principal who have not paid the fee due August 1, 2003.  No motion was made.

 

Request for payment plan

 

Laverne Turner, candidate, (Laverne) Turner for Senate (see May 28th and August 27th minutes) - Mr. Turner requested that the Board consider a payment plan of $35 a month for 23 months until his $800 late filing fee is paid.

 

Mr. Fluegel's MOTION:            To: 1) approve Mr. Turner's request for a payment schedule of $35 per month; and 2) notify Mr. Turner that if the payments are not timely made, the remainder of the late filing fees will be due immediately.

 

Vote on MOTION:            Unanimously passed.

 

Informational Items

 

Payment of late fee

 

·            Annual lobbyist principal fee due August 1, 2003

 

AT&T Wireless Services:  $20

Committee of Nine:  $15

Minnesota Association of Optometrists and Opticians:  $10

Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association:  $35

Northwestern Health Sciences University:  $10

 

·            Annual lobbyist fee due August 1, 2003

 

            Stephen Bolles, Northwestern Health Sciences University:  $10

            Angela Fontanta, Allstate Insurance Company:  $10

Tim Seck, Great River Energy:  $5

 

Payment of Civil Fine

 

Keith Ellison, candidate, Committee to Elect Keith Ellison - In calendar year 2002, the Committee to Elect Keith Ellison accepted aggregate contributions in excess of the special source contribution limit.  The total amount of these contributions exceeded by $524 the special source contribution limit.  Representative Ellison entered into a conciliation agreement on July 29, 2003, which required him to return an amount sufficient to bring his committee into compliance, and pay a civil fine of $524.

 

Financial statement and agency deposits - Mr. Sigurdson submitted a report covering July 1 through August 2003.

 

Annual Report July 1, 2002, through June 30, 2003 – Board members reviewed a draft Annual Report for fiscal year 2003.

 

Ms. Pauly's MOTION:            To approve the Annual Report for fiscal year 2003 as drafted.

 

Vote on MOTION:            Unanimously passed.

 

LEGAL COUNSEL'S REPORT

 

Counsel Huwe presented the legal counsel report outlining the status of cases that have been turned over to the Attorney General's office (see copy of memo attached). 

 

REPORT FROM EXECUTIVE SESSION

 

Findings in the Matter of the Complaint Regarding the Committee to Elect (Keith) Ellison - The Board issued findings showing that there is no probable cause to believe that reporting violation alleged in the complaint continues to exist because the committee amended the Report of Receipts and Expenditures for calendar year 2002 to include all expenditures.  The Board ordered that the findings and the record of the investigation be made a part of the public records of the Board (see copy of findings attached).

 

Findings in the Matter of the Complaint Regarding the Minnesota Vikings

Football Club – The Board issued findings showing that there is:  1) no probable cause to believe that the Minnesota Vikings or legislators attending an event violated Minn. Stat. §10A.071; 2) probable cause to believe that legislators had enhanced access to the playing fields and coaching staff; 3) probable cause to believe that contemporaneous payment by legislators should have been made to the Minnesota Vikings as the entity that provided the goods, and not to the Minnesota Vikings Children's Fund; and 4) no probable cause to believe that the attending legislators received preferential treatment for admission to the training camp events.  The Board ordered that the findings and the record of the investigation be made a part of the public records of the Board (see copy of findings attached).

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

Meeting adjourned.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Jeanne Olson

Executive Director