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Latest News - July 2015

July 22, 2015
Teachers union caught breaking campaign finance laws, gets off easy
Source: WASHINGTONEXAMINER.COM
By: JASON RUSSELL

The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers and the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Federation of Teachers coordinated in a deliberate attempt to break Philadelphia campaign finance law, according to a settlement reached Tuesday between the PFT and the Philadelphia Board of Ethics.

The PFT gave City Council candidate Helen Gym $11,500, Philadelphia's per candidate contribution limit. On Feb. 26, the PFT donated exactly $11,500 to the Pennsylvania chapter of the AFT. That very same day, the Pennsylvania chapter's executive council voted to write Gym's campaign a check for exactly $11,500. Both the PFT and the Board of Ethics agreed this arrangement exceeded Philadelphia's per-candidate contribution limits by $11,500.

The maximum penalty for a campaign finance violation in Philadelphia is $2,000. Under the settlement, the union's fine was reduced to $1,500 even though its donation was $11,500 too large.

The settlement did not state whether Gym was required to return the excess $11,500 she received. The Executive Director of the Philadelphia Board of Ethics, Shane Creamer, told the Washington Examiner that a confidentiality agreement restricts him from commenting on whether that was the case.

 

 


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