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For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Judith Ingram

May 22 , 2009

Julia Queen

  Christian Hilland

FEC TAKES FINAL ACTION ON SIX CASES

WASHINGTON – The Federal Election Commission recently made public its final action on six matters under review (MURs). In one matter, a respondent agreed to pay a civil penalty of $6,400 for apparently making contributions in the names of other people and contributing in excess of the allowable limit to a federal candidate.  The Commission dismissed four matters and closed the file in another.

Under the law, the FEC must attempt to resolve its enforcement cases, or MURs, through a confidential investigative process that may lead to a negotiated conciliation agreement between the Commission and the individual or group.Additional information regarding MURs can be found on the FEC web site at http://www.fec.gov/em/mur.shtml.

This release contains only summary information.For additional details, please consult publicly available documents for each case in the Enforcement Query System (EQS) on the FEC web site at http://eqs.fec.gov/eqs/searcheqs.

MUR 5927

RESPONDENTS:

Joseph A. Solomon; Sheldon S. Sollosy

COMPLAINANT:

The Beacon Mutual Insurance Company

SUBJECT:

The complaint alleged that Solomon, former President and Chief Executive Officer of The Beacon Mutual Insurance Company, violated the Act during his tenure by soliciting contributions from executives and other employees of the company to a federal candidate’s campaign. The complaint alleged he used his personal funds to reimburse some of the contributors. In the normal course of its supervisory responsibilities, the Commission discovered that Sollosy, the company’s Chairman of the Board of Directors, may have violated the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, as amended (the Act), by accepting reimbursement of his contribution by Solomon.

OUTCOME:

In December 2008, the Commission found reason to believe Solomon violated the Act by making contributions in the names of other people and contributing in excess of the allowable limit to a federal candidate. The Commission sent a letter of admonishment to Sollosy for allowing Solomon to use his name to make a contribution.  In a conciliation agreement, which the Commission accepted in April, Solomon agreed to pay a civil penalty of $6,400 and take steps to ensure that his future conduct complies with the Act and Commission regulations.

   

MUR 6068

RESPONDENTS:

Arcuri for Congress and Matt Sisti as Treasurer

COMPLAINANT:

Greg Rigby

SUBJECT:

The complaint alleged that Arcuri for Congress failed to display the required disclaimer on a fundraising solicitation.

OUTCOME:

The Commission dismissed the matter after the Committee explained that the error resulted from a miscommunication with the volunteer hosts of a fundraiser for Michael Arcuri (NY-24). The Commission sent a letter of caution to Arcuri for Congress and Sisti, in his official capacity as treasurer, advising the Committee to take steps to ensure that its conduct is in compliance with the Act and Commission regulations.

 

MUR 6069

RESPONDENTS:

Wegner for Congress and Mike Mathews as Treasurer

COMPLAINANT:

Steven Fernlund

SUBJECT:

The complaint alleged that Wegner for Congress failed to disclose contributions, failed to file disclosure reports on time and received excessive contributions.

OUTCOME:

The Commission dismissed the matter after learning of a number of extenuating circumstances related to candidate Kenneth Wegner’s campaign for a congressional seat in Nevada’s 1st District, including Wegner’s being injured in a car accident and the low amount of money involved. The Commission sent a letter of caution to Wegner for Congress and Mathews, in his official capacity as treasurer, advising the Committee to take steps to ensure that its conduct is in compliance with the Act and Commission regulations.

   
MUR 6041  

RESPONDENTS:

Richard Hanna for Congress and Daniel J. Robertello as Treasurer

COMPLAINANTS:

Mitchell G. Ford

SUBJECT:

The complaint alleged that Richard Hanna for Congress and Robertello, in his official capacity as treasurer, violated the Act by failing to include disclaimers on a fundraising solicitation letter, the campaign’s web site and a placard, as required by the Act and FEC regulations.  Hanna was a candidate in New York’s 24th Congressional District.

OUTCOME:

The Commission dismissed the case in light of remedial actions taken by the Committee and its apparent attempt to comply with the disclaimer provisions under the Act. The Commission sent a letter of caution to the Committee and its treasurer advising the Committee to take steps to ensure that its conduct is in compliance with the Act and Commission regulations.

   
MUR 5918  

RESPONDENTS:

Delaware State Republican Committee (also known as Republican State Committee of Delaware) and Thomas J. Shopa as Treasurer; Romney for President and Darrell W. Crate in his official capacity as Treasurer; Dave Burris; and Terry Strine

COMPLAINANT:

Francis X. Raskauskas

SUBJECT:

The complaint concerned an event staged by the Delaware State Republican Committee (DSRC), which was presented as a “meet and greet and/or fund raiser for Mitt Romney,” a presidential candidate. The complaint alleged that the event may have violated the Act because the invitations apparently did not include proper disclaimers and there was no reporting of apparent in-kind contributions to the Romney Committee. The complaint also questioned the propriety of groups other than the Romney campaign sending invitations for the event, the DSRC’s role as a sponsor or agent of the Romney Committee and the possible co-mingling of funds because the invitations directed that checks be payable to the DSRC.

OUTCOME:

The Commission used its prosecutorial discretion and dismissed the allegations based on the likely low amount of money involved, the lack of evidence of commingling or otherwise participating in joint fundraising activities and the lack of evidence that the DSRC failed to report in-kind contributions. The Commission sent a letter of caution to the DSRC and Shopa, in his official capacity as treasurer, advising the Committee to take steps to ensure that its conduct is in compliance with the Act and Commission regulations.

   
MUR 5935  

RESPONDENTS:

Representative Kirsten E. Gillibrand

COMPLAINANTS:

Rhinebeck Republican Party and Robert X. Monahan as Chairman

SUBJECT:

The complainant alleged that Gillibrand (NY-20) violated the soft money prohibitions of the Act by permitting her name to appear on an invitation to a fundraising event benefiting a candidate for local office. The invitation asked for contributions up to $2,500 and did not contain any language prohibiting corporate contributions.

OUTCOME:

The Commission closed the case.

 

   

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency that administers and enforces federal campaign finance laws. The FEC has jurisdiction over the financing of campaigns for the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, the Presidency and the Vice Presidency. Established in 1975, the FEC is composed of six Commissioners who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

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