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For Immediate Release
August 18, 2005
Contact: Kelly Huff
Bob Biersack
Ian Stirton
George Smaragdis
COMPLIANCE CASES MADE PUBLIC
 

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Election Commission has recently made public its final action on a matter previously under review (MUR). This release contains only disposition information.

1.

MUR 5573

RESPONDENTS:

(a)   Westar Energy, Inc.

(b)   Douglass Lawrence

(c)   Carl M. Koupal

(d)  Richard Bornemann

(e)  Governmental Strategies, Inc.

COMPLAINANT:

Sua sponte

SUBJECT:

Corporate facilitation of earmarked contributions/improper conduit activity

DISPOSITION:

(a)   Conciliation Agreement: $20,000 civil penalty

(b)   Conciliation Agreement: $  8,500 civil penalty

(c)   Conciliation Agreement: $  7,000 civil penalty

(d)  Conciliation Agreement: $  5,000 civil penalty

(e)   Reason to believe, but took no further action*

            MUR 5573 was a sua sponte by Westar Energy, Inc., regarding the activities of several former officers and an outside lobbyist. The activities involved top Westar executives using corporate personnel and resources to facilitate the making of earmarked contributions from other company executives to targeted federal candidates. Most activities described in the submission occurred during the 2002 election cycle and involved 13 Westar executives who contributed $32,700 in response to solicitations. The Commission has conciliated with these respondents. Statements of Reasons were issued by Chairman Thomas, Vice Chairman Toner and Commissioners Mason, McDonald and Weintraub.

DOCUMENTS ON PUBLIC RECORD:

Documents from this matter are available from the Commission’s web site at http://www.fec.gov by entering either 5573 under case number in the Enforcement Query System.  They are also available in the FEC’s Public Records Office at 999 E St. NW in Washington.

 

*There are four administrative stages to the FEC enforcement process:

1. Receipt of proper complaint 3. "Probable cause" stage
2. "Reason to believe" stage 4. Conciliation stage

It requires the votes of at least four of the six Commissioners to take any action. The FEC can close a case at any point after reviewing a complaint. If a violation is found and conciliation cannot be reached, then the FEC can institute a civil court action against a respondent.

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