STATE OF MINNESOTA
CAMPAIGN FINANCE AND PUBLIC DISCLOSURE BOARD

. . . . . . . . .

Friday August 22, 1997

. . . . . . . . .

Afton Conference Room
Second Floor, Centennial Office Building

. . . . . . . . .

MINUTES

Meeting was called to order by Chair Anderson.Members present: Anderson, Owens Hayes, Pauly, Rodriguez, Slocum, Wilson.Others present: Olson, Goldsmith, Swanson, Perreault, staff; Raschke, counsel.

MINUTES (July 18, 1997)Ms. Wilson's MOTION: To approve the July 18, 1997, minutes as drafted.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed by four members (Pauly, Slocum absent).

CHAIR'S REPORT

Board Meeting Schedule - Next Board meeting: Friday, September 26, 1997.

Conference on Governmental Ethics Laws (COGEL) Conference - Chair Anderson announced that Mr. Goldsmith is unable to attend the 1997 COGEL conference. The Board will send four people to the conference: Mr. Anderson, Ms. Owens Hayes, Counsel Gretz, and Ms. Olson.

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT

Ms. Olson reported the following:

Staff activities:

McMullen Software Corporation has been selected as the vendor to assist the Board in providing a Campaign Finance Management System to political committees and political funds. Staff is in the process of negotiating a contract with the vendor.

Updated copies of Minnesota Rules chapters 4501-4525 with the July 1st changes are available for Board members.

Staff met with the Board's executive budget officer for the biennial reconciliation of public subsidy certifications from the Department of Revenue with the Board's records and the state accounting system.

Miscellaneous:

The legislative auditor reviewed final FY 97 figures with Mr. Goldsmith and Ms. Swanson. An exit conference will be scheduled soon. At that conference, staff will receive the draft copy of the legislative auditor's findings and report. A copy of the final report should be available for members at the September Board meeting.

Gail Olson, Deputy Attorney General, notified staff that she is changing positions in the Attorney General's office. Ms. Olson was Susan Gretz's supervisor. Joan Peterson will fill Ms. Olson's former position. Ms. Gretz will remain as the Board's legal counsel.

Staff, in consultation with the Board chair, requested the Attorney General's office to provide independent counsel to assist the Board in deliberations about certain matters. Ms. Olson met with Deputy Attorney General Lee Sheehy, Joan Peterson and Ken Raschke on August 21, 1997. The Attorney General's office believes they can represent the Board in the matter in question. However, Mr. Sheehy acquiesced to the Board's request. The Attorney General's office will arrange for special counsel, subject to the Board's approval. Tentatively, former Supreme Court Justice Simonette will act as special counsel. The Board will be billed for the cost of the independent counsel.

At the July Board meeting, Board members were reminded to include the State of Minnesota as a source of compensation on Supplementary Statements of Economic Interest. Blank Statements were available for members who wish to amend at this time. Staff will remind members of other Boards required to file Statements to include this information on the supplementary statement.

Enforcement Report

Ms. Perreault presented the following enforcement matters for Board action:

Consent Item

Board Action: Authorization of third letter, to be sent by certified mail, to compel the filing of a required amendment to the political committee's Registration and Statement of Organization, and subsequent legal enforcement action if the report is not filed. An amendment letter and one subsequent notice have previously been sent to each client.

James H Stock, treasurer, Stevens County RPM

Board Action: Authorization of certified letter for nonpayment of late filing fees and subsequent legal enforcement action in the event the fee is not paid. Two notices have been previously sent to each client.

Statement of Economic Interest due April 28,1997

John Nakasone, member, Urban Initiative Board: $100

Lobbyist Disbursement Report due April 15, 1997

Bradley Clifford (Representing Coalition for Advance of Telecom in MN): $100

Bradley Clifford (Representing Coalition of Export Minn): $100

Board Action: Authorization of third letter, to sent by certified mail, to compel the filing of a required amendment to the Report of Receipts and Expenditures and to authorize subsequent legal enforcement action if the report is not filed. An amendment letter and two subsequent notices have previously been sent to the client.

William Anderson, treasurer, Friends of Rob Hafiz Committee

Ms. Rodriguez's MOTION: To authorize the actions specified in the consent matters.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed by five members (Slocum absent).

Discussion Items

Waiver Request

David Erickson, Member, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (see July 18, 1997, Board minutes)

A $75 late filing fee accrued for the late filing of Mr. Erickson's Supplementary Statement of Economic Interest due April 15, 1997. The statement was filed on June 16, 1997. Mr. Erickson asked for an opportunity to appear before the Board on this matter.

Chair Anderson welcomed Mr. Erickson to the Board meeting. Mr. Erickson explained to the Board the set of circumstances that he believed led to the accumulation of the late filing fee and to request that the late filing fee be waived and that the Board remove all references using his name from the record of the Board meeting on July 18, 1997, or any other meeting.

Mr. Slocum's MOTION: To grant Mr. Erickson's request to waive the $75 late filing fee.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

Chair Anderson explained that the matter was discussed during public meetings and reference to the matter would not be removed from previous Board meeting minutes.

Marvin Cole, treasurer, People FPBP of the USA

Marvin Cole failed to file his committee's pre-general election Report of Receipts and Expenditures due October 28,1996, and accordingly a late filing fee of $500 accrued. At its March 21,1997, meeting the Board approved a motion to administratively terminate the committee, and suspend enforcement activities not already in progress. Mr. Cole had no permanent address and was receiving his mail at general delivery in Iowa City, Iowa.

On June 9, 1997, staff mailed Mr. Cole a statutory notice informing him of the Board's intent to place collection of the late filing fee with the State's Revenue Re-capture program. The letter was returned to the Board office on July 19, 1997 marked "moved-left no address" .

The Board directed staff to continue its efforts to collect the $500 late filing fee through revenue recapture without the notice, if permitted by statute.

Request for an Extension of Termination of Inactive Committee

Cynthia Whiteford, treasurer, (Roger) Moe for Governor

The Moe for Governor committee received a notice from staff on June 23, 1997, informing it that based on its filed Reports of Receipts and Expenditures it has been identified as an "inactive" committee. The committee was required to file a termination report with the Board by August 23, 1997 (60 days after the notice).

On July 28, 1997, staff received a letter from the treasurer of the Moe for Governor committee requesting that the Board extend the requirement to terminate until December 31, 1998. The letter stated that this would allow them to complete the election cycle without having to register again.

Ms. Rodriguez's MOTION: To grant Ms. Whiteford's request to extend the requirement to terminate the (Roger) Moe for Governor committee until December 31, 1998.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

Robert Nankervis, treasurer, Iron Range Gun Owners PAC, #40372

The Iron Range Gun Owners PAC received a notice from staff on June 23, 1997, informing it that based on its filed Reports of Receipts and Expenditures it has been identified as an "inactive" committee. The committee was required to file a termination report with the Board by August 23, 1997 (60 days after the notice).

On August 20, 1997, staff received a letter from Mr. Nankervis requesting that the Board extend the requirement to terminate as the committee will be making expenditures during fall 1997.

Ms. Owens Hayes' MOTION: To grant Mr. Nankervis' request to extend the requirement to terminate the Iron Range Gun Owners PAC until December 31, 1997.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

Notification to County Attorney

The year-end Report of Receipts and Expenditures for the Friends of Thomas Ross Committee, filed July 16,1997, included a contribution from the AZZONE Security /Investigations Agency-A.S.I.A. Inc. The records at the Secretary of State's office indicate that the contributor is a corporation.

Staff requests Board direction on whether to send notification to the County Attorney for possible violation of Minn. Stat. §211B.15.

Ms. Owens Hayes' MOTION: To direct staff to refer the matter of the corporate contribution to the Friends of Thomas Ross Committee to the County Attorney's office.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

Address and Employment Information Disclosure Enforcement - Final Report (See July 18, 1997, Board minutes)

Staff called the committees who did not respond to previous notices. Certified letters were sent to three committees. Of those, one committee responded and provided all the necessary information, two have not responded to any of the letters. Other committees not in full compliance have provided an explanation of what attempts they have made to acquire the necessary information.

Fifteen committees have not supplied complete information. A report listing those committees is available for Board review.

Ms. Rodriguez's MOTION: To direct staff to notify noncomplying committees to: 1) continue their efforts to secure complete compliance with address and employer disclosure requirements for all contributors; 2) submit a detailed list of the efforts the committee has made to secure the necessary disclosure from each contributor for Board consideration at its September 26, 1997, meeting.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

Lobbyist Principal - Final Report

Pursuant to Board Direction staff attempted to obtain full compliance with the requirement that lobbyist principals' file an Annual Report of Lobbyist Principal, due March 15, 1997. Staff sent two notices, and a third letter was sent printed on letterhead from the Attorney General's Office to the non-filing lobbyist principals. A list of non-filing lobbyist principals was sent to the legislative leadership and assistant leaders.

The following lobbyist principals failed to file the Annual Report of Lobbyist Principal:

All Terrain Vehicle Association of Minnesota

American Association of University Women - Minnesota Chapter

BackBone Inc

Capstone Auto Pawnbrokers

Cedar Towing Inc

CoCensys

Eveleth Taconite Company

Lexington Company (The)

Lincoln Pipestone Rural Water

Lower Sioux Community

Minnesota Community Action Association

Minnesota Pawnbrokers Association

Minnesota Technology Corridor Corporation

Petroleum Tank Group

Pro Family Television

Rick's Cabaret International, Inc

United We Stand America - Minnesota, Inc

Mr. Rodriguez's MOTION: To direct staff to: 1) discontinue further efforts to secure compliance; and 2) make the list of delinquent lobbyist principals public by listing those entities in the Board minutes, on the Board website, and through a news release to the appropriate media.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

Request to Terminate Lobbyist

Robert Lee Fern, (Representing Ice Cream Bar , Inc. (the)

As a lobbyist principal, the Ice Cream Bar, Inc. is requesting that the Board terminate the registration of Robert Lee Fern as a lobbyist for its organization. The Ice Cream Bar, Inc. states that it requested Mr. Fern to terminate his registration as a lobbyist.

Mr. Fern registered as a lobbyist for the Ice Cream Bar, Inc. in February, 1996, and reported no disbursements. The Ice Cream Bar, Inc. advised staff that Mr. Fern receives no compensation from the organization nor does he meet the definition of a lobbyist. According to the principal, Mr. Fern has not engaged in lobbying for the Ice Cream Bar, Inc. since 1996.

Mr. Fern did not file the April 15, or July 15, 1997, Lobbyist Disbursement Reports.

Ms. Rodriguez's MOTION: To administratively terminate Mr. Fern's lobbyist registration for the Ice Cream Bar, Inc. effective December 31,1996.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

Informational Items

Payment of Late Filing Fees

Donald L. Moos, treasurer, (Becky) Livermore Volunteer Committee: $25 (partial payment on installment plan; $100 remains to be paid)

David Meier, treasurer, (David) Meier Volunteer Committee: $100

Shelly Martin, treasurer, Chandler (Kevin) for Senate: $165 ($100, late fee; $65, service fee)

Jeanette M. Smith, treasurer, Committee to Elect Bonnie Walters $130 ($100, late fee; $30, service fee)

Junita Flowers, (Representing Family and Children's Service): $30

William Knutson, member, Medical Services Review Board: $35

John C. Kim, member, Board of Lola & Rudy Perpich Minnesota Center for Arts Education: $5

Payment of Civil Fines

Jon C. Saunders, treasurer, (Dean) Johnson Volunteer Committee - During the election year 1996, the Johnson Volunteer Committee made campaign expenditures of $46,761.03, which exceeded the applicable expenditure limit by $1,193.03. Dean Johnson entered into a conciliation agreement, effective July 29, 1997, to remedy the matter. On July 22, 1997, the Committee paid a civil fine of $1,166.03, one times the amount by which the campaign expenditures exceeded the applicable limit, excluding the $27 billed for the miscalculated expenditure for the rental of a van.

All payments of late filing fees and civil fines have been deposited in the general fund of the state pursuant to statute.

Return of Public Subsidy

George W. Bateman, treasurer, (George) Bateman for Representative: $205.81, partial payment through chapter 13 bankruptcy. Public subsidy totaling $1,866.01 remains to be returned from 1990.

Financial report and agency deposits - Mr. Goldsmith submitted a final report covering July, 1996, through June 30, 1997.

Annual Report

Board members reviewed a draft of the Annual Report for fiscal year 1997.

The Board agreed to certain changes in the draft.

Ms. Rodriguez's MOTION: To approve the Annual Report for fiscal year 1997 as amended in discussion.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed.

ADVISORY OPINION REQUEST

Request for the following advisory opinion is nonpublic data.

Advisory Opinion #273 - Gift to members of a group of conference receptions or meals

The Board reviewed a draft response to an advisory opinion request by a public official who asks if dinners and receptions paid for in part by lobbyist principals at a conference or meeting as described in the facts falls within an exception to the Minn. Stat. § 10A.071 prohibition on gifts from lobbyist principals to officials?

Ms. Rodriguez's MOTION: To lay over discussion of the advisory opinion request to the September 26,1997, Board meeting.

Vote on MOTION: Unanimously passed by five members (Owens Hayes absent).

LEGAL COUNSEL'S REPORT

Board members reviewed a memo from Counsel Gretz outlining the status of cases which have been turned over to the Attorney General's office (see memo attached).

REPORT FROM EXECUTIVE SESSION

Findings in the Matter of a Complaint Regarding the (Torrey) Westrom for State Representative Committee

The Board issued findings concerning probable cause in the matter of a complaint regarding the (Torrey) Westrom for State Representative Committee. The Board ordered that the findings and the record of the investigation be made a part of the public records of the Board (see findings attached).

Findings in the Matter of a Complaint Regarding Tim Penny

The Board issued findings concerning probable cause in the matter of a complaint regarding Tim Penny. The Board ordered that the findings and the record of the investigation be made a part of the public records of the Board (see findings attached).

Findings in the Matter of an Investigation Regarding Bonnie Walters

The Board issued findings concerning probable cause in the matter of a complaint regarding Bonnie Walters. The Board ordered that the findings and the record of the investigation be made a part of the public records of the Board (see findings attached).

ADJOURNMENT

Meeting adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,

Sidney Pauly, Secretary

(Minutes by staff)

Attachments follow

State of Minnesota
Office of the Attorney General

To: Jeanne Olson, Executive Director
Campaign Finance & Public Disclosure Board

Date: August 12, 1997

From: Susan Gretz, Assistant Attorney General

Subject: Status Report of Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board Matters

I. MAJOR CASES/MAJOR ISSUES:

None at this time.

II. COMMERCIAL LITIGATION DIVISION:

CFPDB v. Rick Stafford and the 61st Senate District DFL. Summons and Complaint prepared for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee. Professional process server tried four times to serve Mr. Stafford at his last known address but was advised that Mr. Stafford has moved out of state. The process server was advised by the DFL party that Mr. Stafford is terminally ill and in a hospital or hospice. We will be inquiring of the Board whether they still want to pursue this matter in light of the inability to serve Mr. Stafford.

CFPDB v. George Bateman $205.81 was received from the Bankruptcy Trustee for Bateman's repayment of public subsidy. $1,866 remains due.

CFPDB v. Joe Block, Kevin Correy, and the (Kevin) Correy for Senate Committee (report and late fee). (Referred 12/11/96) Judgment for $575 was entered May 2, 1997 in Ramsey County and docketed in Steele County. Judgment has been referred to MCE for collections.

CFPDB v. Kevin Correy and the (Kevin) Correy for Senate Committee (Return of Public Subsidy). (Referred July 8, 1997). New file to recover $12,933.30 in public subsidy due to the candidate's failure to disclosure receipt of matching contributions. Summons and complaint will be prepared.

CFPDB v. Michael Brabay. The missing information regarding an amended report is now included in the file and the judgment now satisfied in full. Case may now be closed.

CFPDB v. Amy des Parois and the People for (Michael) des Parois Committee. Summons and Complaint were served June 26, 1997 for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee. On July 25, 1997, the missing report was filed, but the late fee not received.

CFPDB v. Michael Forbes and the Olmstead County DFL Women's Club. Summons and Complaint for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee were served on June 19, 1997. Papers for default judgment are being prepared.

CFPDB v. Jill Henderson and the Stebbens for State Senate Committee. Summons and Complaint for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee were sent to Metro Legal on June 24, 1997, but they are having trouble locating Henderson.

CFPDB v. Jill Henderson and the Stebbens for State Representative Committee. Same as above.

CFPDB v. Connie Janssen. (Referred 12/11/96) Still trying to locate Janssen for service of the Summons and Complaints for multiple missing reports (pre-primary, pre-general and year end report) plus late filing fees. Past attempts at service have been unsuccessful.

CFPDB v. Grant Lebens and the Rosenstiel for Legislature Committee. Unsuccessful service of summons and complaint for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee. Found different address for Rosensteil so service was sent out again July 16, 1997.

CFPDB v. Shelly Martin and the (Kevin) Chandler for Senate Committee. Summons and Complaint for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee were served on June 26, 1997. Report and late fee for $165 were received. File will now be closed.

CFPDB v. Donna Meigs. Board decided on July 18, 1997 to take no further action in this matter as Meigs has relocated to Dallas, Texas. We are closing our file.

CFPDB v. Mark Nygaard, R-Kids (Remember Kids in Divorce Settlements). Summons and Complaint for failure to file a Lobbyist Disbursement Report and pay a $100.00 late filing fee were served June 4, 1997. No answer, so court papers for default judgment are being prepared.

CFPDB v. Michael Schultz and the Schultz Volunteer Committee. Summons and complaint for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee was sent out for service. Although neighbors report Schultz lives out of state, the process server did serve Schultz' mother. We are researching whether this is a viable service.

CFPDB v. Jeanette Smith and the Committee to Elect Bonnie Walters. After our Summons and Complaint for failure to file year end Report of Receipts and Expenditures and pay $100.00 late filing fee was served, report was received, and Bonnie Walters paid the $130 late fee. This matter may now be closed.

CFPDB v. Jeanette Smith and the 19th Senate District DFL. After Summons and Complaint were served, report was received, but not late fee.

CFPDB v. Jeanette Smith and the Minnesota NOW PAC. Summons and Complaint were served, however, unlike above two, this report has not been received, nor late fee.

19. CFPDB v. Connie Heisenfelt. New action for civil fine of $360 for exceeding contribution limit.

III. ACTIONS FOR INJUNCTIVE RELIEF:

1. CFPDB v. Phil Ratte: Bench warrant still outstanding for Ratte.

cc: Christie Eller
Joel Schoenecker

STATE OF MINNESOTA
CAMPAIGN FINANCE AND PUBLIC DISCLOSURE BOARD
(formerly Ethical Practices Board)

FINDINGS IN THE MATTER OF A COMPLAINT REGARDING THE
(TORREY) WESTROM FOR STATE REPRESENTATIVE COMMITTEE

Procedural Background

On May 9, 1997, Todd Nelson, treasurer for the (Clair) Nelson Volunteer Committee, ("Complainant") filed a Complaint with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board ("Board") alleging that the (Torrey) Westrom for State Representative Committee ("Respondent") violated Certain provisions of Minnesota Statutes, chapter 10A.

Complainant alleges that the Respondent violated the campaign spending limits applicable for the 1996 election year based on four issues.

  1. Complainant alleges that campaign advertising and literature pieces supporting the Respondent, which were paid for by other entities, resulted in unreported in kind contributions and expenditures by the Respondent.
  2. Complainant alleges that the Respondent did not report all of its campaign expenditures for newspaper advertising during the 1996 election year.
  3. Complainant alleges that the Respondent reported less expenditures paid to Mail Stations, Inc. on its January 31, 1997, report than it reported paid to the same vendor on its October 28, 1996, report.
  4. Complainant alleges that in 1995 the Respondent prepaid for election year radio advertising, and that the transaction should have been reported as a 1996 campaign expenditure.

The evidence submitted in support of the complaint consists of copies of Agreement Forms for Political Broadcasts between Torrey Westrom and radio stations KMRS/KKOK; various receipts and invoices; Agreement Forms for Political Broadcasts between radio stations KMRS/KKOK and Americans for Limited Terms and Jobs Creation Coalition, and other documents.

The Respondent addressed the issues raised by the Complainant in a letter dated July 4, 1997.

Regarding issue #1, the Respondent replies that there was no contact with other groups who spent money on its behalf, except for two in kind contributions which were disclosed by the Westrom for State Representative Committee on the January 31, 1997, Report of Receipts and Expenditures.

In addition, representatives of other entities that Complainant alleges made expenditures on behalf of the Respondent provided responses to the Board's inquiries.

Regarding issue #2, the Respondent replies that its receipts for purchases made at the Grant County Herald agree with the list supplied by Complainant, with one exception. An issue oriented advertisement paid for by the Grant County Republicans was incorrectly included on the listing of advertisements paid for by the Respondent.

Regarding issue # 3, the Respondent replies that the discrepancy between the $8,012.91 paid to Mail Stations, Inc. and reported on the October 28, 1996, Report of Receipts and Expenditures and the $6,286.80 paid to the same vendor and reported on the January 31, 1997, Report of Receipts and Expenditures is based on two factors:

1. the Vendor issued a refund of $483.13 for cancellation of services previously ordered and paid for, but not received by the Respondent and,

2. $1,242.98 of the amount reported paid to this vendor on the October, 28, 1996, report was actually paid for by Ryan Bronson. The reimbursement to Mr. Bronson was reported separately on the January 31, 1997, report for better clarification.

Regarding issue #4, the Respondent replies that conversations with a sales representative from KMRS/KKOK radio stations during 1995 resulted in an agreement to purchase 400 prepaid radio ads, and that the ads would be aired during the 1996 election year. The cost to run each ad on both stations was $7.50 per 30 seconds. The Respondent reported this expenditure on its report covering calendar year 1995 as a campaign expenditure.

The matter was considered by the Board in executive session on June 27, 1997. The Board further considered the matter in executive session on July 18, 1997, and August 22, 1997. Neither the Respondent nor Complainant testified. The matter was considered based on the compliant, the Respondent's reply, the supporting documents submitted by Complainant and the Respondent, and the submissions by representatives of other entities.

Based on the record before it, the Board issues the following:

STATEMENT OF THE EVIDENCE

1. The (Torrey) Westrom for State Representative Committee (the "Committee") is a principal campaign committee registered with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board ("Board").

2. The Committee was required to limit its campaign expenditures during the 1996 election year by virtue of a public subsidy agreement signed by the candidate, Torrey Westrom.

3. The campaign expenditure limit applicable to the Committee for 1996 was $25,063. On its Report of Receipts and Expenditures, the Committee disclosed campaign expenditures of $25,041.19 for election year 1996.

4. The Committee reported receiving in kind contributions from the Committee for State Prolife Candidates ("MCCL") and NFIB, political committees and funds registered with the Board. These contributions were $160.96 and $84 respectively, for a total of $244.96. These contributions were also reported as in kind campaign expenditures by the Committee.

5. Responses received from representatives of other entities and documentary evidence submitted do not provide evidence that expenditures by these entities resulted in contributions to the Committee, other than the in kind contributions which were reported.

6. An issue oriented advertisement paid for by the Grant County Republicans was incorrectly included on the listing of advertisements paid for by the Committee.

7. The discrepancy of $1,726.11 between amounts reported paid to Mail Stations, Inc. on October 28, 1996, and January 31, 1997, results from a refund in the amount of $483.13 made to the Committee by the vendor and the reporting of $1,242.98 as a third party reimbursement to Ryan Bronson on the January report.

8. During 1995 the Committee made a transfer of $3,000 to KMRS/KKOK radio stations, which Torrey Westrom and the stations' representative understood and agreed was to purchase 400 advertisements, at the cost of $7.50 per 30 seconds each, to be run during the 1996 election. The transfer was accompanied by an agreement signed by Torrey Westrom and a station sales representative, and a receipt for $3,000.

9. The transaction was reported by the Committee on its Report of Receipts and Expenditures covering calendar year 1995 as a campaign expenditure.

Based on the above Statement of the Evidence, the Board makes the following:

FINDINGS CONCERNING PROBABLE CAUSE

1. The Committee received in kind contributions from MCCL and NFIB, and these contributions were properly reported by the Committee as in kind contributions received and as in kind campaign expenditures.

2. There is no probable cause to believe that expenditures by other entities resulted in contributions to the Committee, other than the in kind contributions which were reported.

3. There is no probable cause to believe that the Committee failed to report any expenditures to the Grant County Herald.

4. There is no probable cause to believe that the Committee failed to report any expenditures to Mail Stations, Inc.

5. The $3,000 payment to radio stations KMRS/KKOK in 1995 for purchase of 400 radio advertisements, of 30 seconds each, to be run in 1996 was a result of a verbal agreement between the candidate, Torrey Westrom, and the station's sales representative. This verbal agreement was accompanied by a written agreement signed by the candidate and the sales representative, and a receipt for the transfer of funds in payment of the agreement. This transaction constitutes a "purchase" within the meaning of Minn. Stat. §10A.01, subd. 10, which provides that an expenditure is considered to be made in the year in which the candidate made the purchase of goods or services or incurred an obligation to pay for goods or services.

6. There is no probable cause to believe that the Committee exceeded its 1996 spending limit as a result of its 1995 purchase of radio advertising to be used in 1996.

Based on the above Findings, the Board issues the following:

ORDER

The complaint of Todd Nelson regarding the (Torrey) Westrom for State Representative Committee is dismissed in all respects. The Board investigation of this matter is hereby made a part of the public records of the Board pursuant to Minn. Stat. §10A.02, subd. 11.

Copies of this document shall be provided to the complainant and the respondent.

G. Barry Anderson, Chair
Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board

STATE OF MINNESOTA
CAMPAIGN FINANCE AND PUBLIC DISCLOSURE BOARD

(formerly ETHICAL PRACTICES BOARD)

FINDINGS IN THE MATTER OF A COMPLAINT REGARDING TIM PENNY

Procedural Background

On June 27, 1997, the Minnesota Senior Federation ("Complainant") filed a complaint with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board ("Board") alleging that Tim Penny ("Respondent") violated certain provisions of Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 10A, including Minn. Stat. §10A.03, by failing to register as a lobbyist.

The Complainant alleges that the Respondent attempted to influence legislative action in regard to opposing SF 1008 and HF 1087. The Complainant further alleges that the Respondent is affiliated with the firm Himle and Horner, and is paid by them to send letters urging Minnesota citizens to write to public officials or sign petitions opposing the legislation cited above.

The evidence submitted by the Complainant consists of copies of a letter dated March 5, 1997, which the Complainant alleges was sent by the Respondent to Minnesota citizens; a memorandum dated March 26, 1997, from the Respondent to Minnesota citizens; and an article that appeared in the July 1996 issue of the Twin Cities Reader.

In letters dated July 10, and July 31, 1997, the Respondent states that he does not meet the definition of lobbyist . He further states that he spent less than one hour reviewing the contents of the two letters referenced in the complaint. The Respondent also states that the total expenses for the letters mailed was less than $100, and that this was the only activity of this nature in which he was engaged.

The matter was considered by the Board in executive session on July 18, 1997. The Board further considered the matter in executive session on August 22, 1997. Neither the Respondent nor the Complainant testified. The matter was considered based on the Complaint and the Respondent's reply.

Based on the record before it, the Board issues the following:

STATEMENT OF THE EVIDENCE

  1. Tim Penny acknowledges that the two letters submitted by the complainant were sent out with his signature, and that he serves as a consultant to Himle Horner, a communications firm.
  2. Tim Penny did not spend more than $250 in any calendar year nor more than five hours in any month to influence or attempt to influence legislative action by opposing the issues cited in the complaint.
  3. Tim Penny did not engage in any other activity, either on his own or as a consultant to Himle Horner, that communicated with, or urged others to communicate with, public or local officials for the purpose of attempting to influence legislative or administrative action, or the official actions of a metropolitan governmental unit.

Based on the above Statement of the Evidence, the Board makes the following:

FINDINGS CONCERNING PROBABLE CAUSE

  1. The Respondent's activities and spending, as described in the complaint, were not sufficient to bring him within the definition of lobbyist under Minn. Stat. §10A.01, subd. 11 (a)(1).
  2. There is no probable cause to believe that the Respondent violated the Ethics in Government Act, Minnesota Statutes Chapter 10A by failing to register as a lobbyist.

Based on the above Findings, the Board issues the following:

ORDER

The complaint of the Minnesota Senior Federation regarding Tim Penny is dismissed in all respects. The Board investigation of this matter is hereby made a part of the public records of the Board pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 10A.02, subd. 11.

Copies of this document shall be provided to the complainant and to the respondent.

G. Barry Anderson, Chair
Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board

STATE OF MINNESOTA
CAMPAIGN FINANCE AND PUBLIC DISCLOSURE BOARD
(formerly Ethical Practices Board)

FINDINGS IN THE MATTER OF A CONTRIBUTION MADE BY THE
COMMITTEE TO ELECT BONNIE WALTERS TO A CANDIDATE SEEKING A POLITICAL SUBDIVISION OFFICE

Procedural Background

The Committee to Elect Bonnie Walters (The "Committee") filed a Report of Receipts and Expenditures (the "Report") for calendar year 1996, with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board (the "Board"). Review of the Report by staff disclosed that on October 10, 1996, the Committee made a contribution of $200 to Mary Williamson, a candidate for Wright County Commissioner, District 1, a political subdivision office.

Staff notified Bonnie Walters, a candidate for the Committee, of a potential violation of Minn. Stat. §10A.27, subd. 9(c), which prohibits a principal campaign committee from making a contribution to a candidate seeking a political subdivision office.

Ms. Walters responded by letter dated July 24, 1997, in which she acknowledged that the committee made the contribution. Ms. Walters stated that she believed the donation was appropriate and in compliance with Board's procedures.

This matter was considered by the Board in executive session on August 22, 1997. No one from the Committee asked to appear before the Board.

Based on the record before it, the Board issues the following:

STATEMENT OF THE EVIDENCE

1. The Committee to elect Bonnie Walters (the "Committee") was a principal campaign committee registered with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board (the "Board").

2. The Committee terminated its registration with the Board as of October 10, 1996.

3. The Committee made a $200 contribution to Mary Williamson, a candidate for a political subdivision office in Wright County.

4. Minn. Stat. §10A.27, subd. 9(c), prohibits principal campaign committees from making contributions to candidates seeking a political subdivision office.

Based on the Statement of the Evidence, the Board makes the following:

FINDINGS CONCERNING PROBABLE CAUSE

1. Minnesota Statutes, chapter 10A provides no penalty for this violation.

2. The Board investigation of this matter is entered into the public record in accordance with Minn. Stat. §10A.02, subd. 11.

A copy of this document shall be provided to Bonnie Walters.

G. Barry Anderson, Chair
Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board