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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Spin Control

PAC backing Snyder, Mumm missed filing deadlines

The flood of money into Spokane City Council races is accompanied by campaign accusations flowing to the state agency that oversees election spending.

In the last week at least four complaints have been filed with the state Public Disclosure Commission about Spokane races.

In the aftermath, a political action committee has acknowledged that it did not file proper campaign reports.

The Spokane Republican Party this week accused Citizens for Honest Government, a political action committee that supports the campaigns of Jon Snyder and Candace Mumm, of not properly reporting its spending.

Snyder, an incumbent, is running against former Republican state Rep. John Ahern for a seat representing south Spokane. Mumm is running against Michael Cannon for a seat representing northwest Spokane.

Melissa Carpenter, Citizens for Honest Government’s treasurer, said Thursday that the PAC did not intend to hide any expenditures and that it would “take steps to rectify the situation immediately.” She also noted that the PAC reported the expenditures on other reports to the PDC.

Rules require that PACs to report much of their spending on behalf of candidates within 24 hours. But Citizens for Honest Government didn’t report how it spend nearly $50,000 until it filed a required summary report earlier this week.

Kate McCaslin, the co-chair of Jobs and Prosperity for Spokane, a PAC supporting Ahern and Cannon, said state law gives the public the right to follow campaign funding quickly.

“This is not some small violation from someone who didn’t know better,” she said.

Another complaint, filed by Linda McHenry, a Snyder and Mumm supporter, questioned why Cannon’s campaign did not report expenses for two recent recorded phone calls on behalf of Cannon by former Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna. Expense reports for recent activity were due earlier this week, but Cannon's reports did not include the expense. On Friday, after McHenry filed her complaint, Cannon’s campaign refiled the report including the expenses from an Oregon firm for a call recorded by McKenna and another made by City Councilwoman Nancy McLaughlin. Each cost a little over $400.

Jonathan Brunt
Jonathan Brunt joined The Spokesman-Review in 2004. He is the government editor. He previously was a reporter who covered Spokane City Hall, Spokane County government and public safety.

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