California launches investigation into recall candidate Larry Elder’s financial disclosure
California’s Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has opened an investigation into gubernatorial recall candidate Larry Elder’s financial disclosure, an FPPC spokesperson confirmed to The Hill.
The investigation comes after the California Democratic Party filed a complaint against Elder accusing the Republican of not properly disclosing aspects of his finances and business, following a story reported by the Los Angeles Times earlier this month, according to the news outlet.
The FPPC’s investigation into Elder’s campaign financial disclosure was first reported by the Times.
Elder is a leading candidate in next month’s California gubernatorial recall election.
The Times reported earlier this month that it looked like Elder had improperly listed financial disclosures related to Laurence A. Elder & Associates Inc., a business that experts told the news outlet it appeared he owned.
The Times reported that in his Statement of Economic Interests, a public filing that helps note whether there’s any potential ethical concerns, including conflicts of interest, he had not indicated if he owned a stake of that company. He did note that it was a source of income.
An Elder spokeswoman had told the Times that “it appears there might have been an oversight,” and his filing was later updated to show that he owned 100 percent of the company. He also updated that the company was valued at between $100,000 and $1 million.
Additionally, the updated filing indicated that Elder had collected money from The Epoch Times and Alachua County, Fla., Republican Executive Committee, the Times reported.
In a letter to a lawyer representing the California Democratic Party, the FPPC said it was looking into the allegations and added, “You will next receive notification from us upon final disposition of the case. However, please be advised that at this time we have not made any determination about the validity of the allegation(s) your client has made or about the culpability, if any, of the person(s) identified in the complaint.”
In a statement to the Times regarding the investigation, Ying Ma, a campaign spokesperson for Elder, said: “We made a simple mistake and we fixed it as soon as possible. These investigations are very common in campaign world.”
If Elder is found in violation of not improper campaign financial disclosure, each penalty costs a maximum of $5,000, according to the Times, which cited the FPPC.
The Hill has reached out to Elder’s campaign for comment.
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