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Here’s The Scoop … Who’s Paying Their Bills?…

4 YEARS LATER … HERE WE ARE AGAIN …WHO’S PAYING THEIR BILLS?…..

Dear Readers … The campaigns for Commissioner/Mayor  are a chance for voters to get a glimpse into their future representation by the candidates running for office… One on one interaction at your front door …meet and greets at a neighbors home or your condo ‘s social room…and of course at two debates…Another is the the G1, G2, G3 and G4 Reports due throughout the campaign…This is where you the voter, the taxpayer get a real glimpse into how they and their campaign advisers run things…The money it takes to run for office …What come in from supporters and what goes out to vendors…for what and to whom…Whether your future elected official follows the rules…is organized and financially responsible …or not… It offers us a chance to see what might be in store us when and if that candidate gets the job!…

Previously this writer posted the G1 Report (scoops) it was from Oct.1, 2009 – Jan. 15, 2010…The G2 was due on Feb 5, 2010 and it was from Jan. 16, 2010–Jan 29,2010…In the previous post there was a glaring difference between the candidates in how the report was done.. Candidates Sasser, Vincent and Minnet had treasurers who typed and provided all the information required..listing all contributions along with a full disclosure of expenditures with all bills paid current to the time period …The same could NOT be said of their opponents…Marjorie Evans and Joe Couriel were listed as their own treasurers… Ms.Evans was faulty in her addition for contributions, embarrassingly so and unable or incapable to follow the simple requirements of listing her contributors names, complete addresses and occupations …quite disturbing since there were so few!…It was a handwritten report and showed a total lack of care…Her running mate Joe Couriel acting as his own treasurer had somewhat more success following the requirements…but seemed to not know if he was running for Mayor or Commissioner or what type of report he was supplying first putting in a Q4 then crossing it out for G1… Commissioner Silverstone used former Mayor Ken Wardlaw’s wife and CIC Board member-BTSTimes writer Maryann Wardlaw as his treasurer who seemed was able to comprehend the requirements…

The CIC- UOT G1s were not covered and I will cover those and the G2s for them and Minnet/Sasser/Vincent in the next posts…

THE CIC-FURTH ENDORSED CANDIDATES G2 JAN 16-29, 2010…..

Candidate for Dist. 1, Marjorie Evans again wrote hers out..1 page and it stated she had 0 contributions and 0 expenditures…Really?..Remember Ms. Evans who repeatedly says she runs an $8 million non-profit organization is supposed to be a pro at how things work with contributions and expenditures…and we would think at paying her bills? … So how is it possible that she had no expenditures?…She signed to it being truthful as treasurer and candidate under “CERTIFICATION” “It is a first degree misdemeanor for any person to falsify a public record.(ss. 839.13.F.S.)”

Let’s see Marjorie Evans has had political signs out around town … Not sure about doorhanger…but if so no expenditure for those….Marjorie Evans is in the Jan 22, 2010 By The Sea Times with a half page political ad that claims “Pd. Adv. Paid for and Approved by Marjorie Evans For LBTS Commissioner”on pg. 14….and she did not show payment for any of this in her G1 …So where are the bills and where are the payments…and while we are at it…where are her supporters?… Her G2 contributions to date , which are cumulative from Oct.1, 2009 are $1200 and her expenses to date are $344.67…

Candidate for Mayor / CIC Vice Chair Joe Couriel also wrote out his G2 as he did his G1…He states he had contributions from Jan 16-29th of $250.00 and expenditures of $83.00…for doorhangers…which he paid to By The Sea Times Owner-Publisher-Editor Marc Furth..He also had a half page ad in Marc  Furth’s BTSTimes Jan 22, 2010 edition on pg. 13 which states “Pd. Pol. Adv. and Approved by Joe Couriel for LBTS Mayor”…So where is the bill and the expenditure?…His total monetary contribution to date from Oct. 1, 2009  $1400.00 and his total monetary  expenditures to date $1149.37 …Again, where are all Couriel’s supporters?…

Commissioner Jim Silverstone had Maryann Wardlaw prepare his G2 and claims for the period of Jan 16-29th to have received contributions of $450.00 and made expenditures of $ 990.34 to By The Sea Times Owner-Publisher-Editor Marc Furth for doorhangers and yard signs…Jim Silverstone too had a half pg. ad in Marc Furth’s BTSTimes on Jan 22, 2010 on pg 15 stating ” Pd. Pol. Adv. for and approved by Jim Silverstone for LBTS Commission.”..So where is the bill and the expenditure?…The total contributions for Silverstone from Oct. 1, 2009 to Jan 29, 2010 $2,550.00 and expenditures to date $1,337.54…

The bills for his campaign being paid correctly this time should be paramount for Commssioner Silverstone…and for the By The Sea Times …even with new owners…Marc and Cristie Furth.. and here is why… FLASHBACK to the 2006 “Broom Boys” election with Mcintee and Silverstone…and the former BTSTimes….

The Florida Elections Commission looked into some of the same types of behavior we are seeing in this election thus far with the first 2 required reports…(G1 and G2)…While there was no Probable Cause found (because the state just “slaps the wrists” of violators..especially Silverstone-McIntee multiple times over the last 4 years )..

FLORIDA ELECTIONS COMMISSION –

Staff Recommendations/ Summary of Facts and Conclusions of Law…

The case number was FEC 07-054 Respondent was James J. Silverstone  and it covered the following violations..

Section 104.071 (1), (c) Florida Statutes, prohibiting a candidate or person supporting a candidate, in order to aid nomination or election of such candidate, from giving, paying, expending, or contributing any money or other thing of value to any other candidate;

Section 106.07(5), Florida Statutes, prohibiting a candidate from certifying correctness of a campaign treasurer’s report that is incorrect, false, or incomplete;

Section 106.19 (1) (c0, Florida Statutes, prohibiting a person or organization from falsely reporting or deliberately failing to report information required by Chapter 106, Florida Statutes.

Summary of Facts and Conclusions of Law.

1. Respondent James J. Silverstone, was a first- time successful candidate for Town Commissioner District two for the Town of Lauderdale-By-The Sea in the March 14, 2006 municipal election. Respondent ran on a slate with Jerome S. Mc Intee Jr. Respondent was also a former Lauderdale- By- The- Sea Volunteer Fire Department, Inc. served as fire chief of the volunteer fire department and as  chairman of the firefighter’s pension fund.

The complaint made was that Jim Silverstone contributed to Jerry McIntee’s campaign, certified to the correctness of campaign treasurer’s reports that incorrect, false, or incomplete and falsely reported or deliberately failed to report information required by Chapter 106, Fl. Statutes…

The investigator examined whether Jim Silverstone violated the election laws  and this is what she found…

The complaint showed that 3 contributions totaling $1,050.73 were made by Jim Silverstone to Jerry McIntee in Silverstone’s 2006 G4 Jim Silverstone ..A letter was sent to Jerry McIntee on Aug. 21, 2006 that Silverstone had not contributions..”but merely the amount due from Silverstone to the vendor for me to pass which I did.”..

The Table “PAYMENTS MADE BY RESPONDENT TO MR.MCINTEE’S CAMPAIGN”…( payments made by Jim Silverstone to Jerry Mcintee)…

Transaction Date 03/07/06 -Check # 097- Expenditure To Jerome McIntee Campaign Fund-  Purpose None listed on check -Amount $33.67

Transaction Date 03/09/06 -Check # 098- Expenditure To Jerome McIntee- Purpose $373.39 By The Sea Times and $33.76 Signs- Amount $712.06

A telephone interview was needed to clear up the complaints made by the  questionable declarations made by Silverstone …with the investigator and McIntee…McIntee said they were “shared” expenses and he [McIntee} did not ask for reimbursement of any unshared expenses …

Interview on the phone with Silverstone…

10. “In a telephone interview, Respondent [Silverstone] stated he and Mr. McIntee were running on the same platform, campaigning together, going door to door, etc. when they decided to save money where possible by sharing campaign advertising. When asked why he reimbursed McIntee directly instead of partial payments to the vendors, Respondent [Silverstone] stated that Mr. McIntee sometimes paid for services using his personal credit card. Respondent [Silverstone] believed it would be best to make check payable to Mr. McIntee.”

11. “In a subsequent telephone interview, when I asked why he wrote Jerome McIntee Campaign Fund on just one of his reimbursement check and not both, Respondent stated that he cannot recall why he did that. When asked if perhaps Mr. McIntee had requested the reimbursements be payable a particular way, Respondent [Silverstone] stated, “No, I don’t think so.” Respondent [Silverstone] said the reason he and Mr. McIntee shared some expenses was to minimize the cost associated with advertising expenses.”

12. “On March 7, 2006 Respondent [Silverstone] reimbursed Mr. McIntee $338.67 and on March 9, 2006 Respondent [Silverstone] reimbursed Mr. McIntee $712.06, for a total of $1,050.73 for shared expenses. The memo line of the first payment is bank, however, it is noted in the memo line of the second payment $337.39 By the Sea Times and $338.67 Signs. ”

13. “In a telephone interview, Respondent [Silverstone] stated he reimbursed Mr. McIntee for his portion of campaign expenses, nothing more. Respondent [Silverstone] stated that he doesn’t believe he did anything wrong by reimbursing Mr. McIntee for his [portion of common slate expenses. Respondent [Silverstone] state that “What happened is what happened.” and that Mr. McIntee purchased the advertising and sometimes used his personal credit card so it was easier to reimburse him directly.”

ALERT-HERE’S WHAT WAS WRONG…JIMMY…

Again Jim Silvertsone- Respondent stated that he doesn’t believe he did anything wrong by reimbursing Mr. McIntee for his [portion of common slate expenses. Respondent [Silverstone] state that “What happened is what happened.”

14. ” Section 104.071(1)(c), Florida Statutes prohibits a candidate from directly or indirectly contributing any money or thing of value for the furtherance of the candidacy of another candidate. Candidates may voluntarily form a slate of candidates, but they must share equally in the cost of any joint advertisement. For example, a joint advertisement by three candidates that costs $300 must be paid and reported as a $100 expenditure from each of the candidates. Each candidate should pay for his share to the vendor providing the service. See DE 98-07.

15. “Respondent’s [Silverstone] failure to follow proper method outlined in DE-98-07 for sharing and reporting the cost of joint advertising caused it to appear that Respondent [Silverstone] was making contributions to Mr. McIntee’s campaign. Nevertheless, it does not appear that Respondent willfully violated Section 104.071 (1) (c) Florida Statutes.”

BC- Silvertone failed to follow the statute and pay the vendor directly, but because it was not “willful” …he got a pass!…

The investigator then addressed the Fl Statutes 106.07 (5) and 106.19 (1) (c)…

She examined whether Silverstone violated this section of the election laws by certifying to the correctness of his campaign treasurer’s reports…as to being incorrect, false, or incomplete, and by falsely reporting or deliberately failing to report information…

LOOK FAMILIAR?…

18.The complaint “alleged that Respondent’s [Silverstone] 2006 G1 CTR, covering Jan 1, 2006 to January 20, 2006, does not show an expenditure for a newspaper advertisement that was published on January 13, 2006 in By the Sea Times (BTST)

19. BTST issued Invoice Number 464 for $1,125 to Respondent’s [Silverstone] slate partner, Jerome McIntee on January 4, 2006. The invoice covers four ads that ran in the newspaper between January 13,2006 and February 24,2006, and a full page, color ad that ran in BTST on March 10, 2006. Respondent [Silverstone] paid $562.50 to BTST on February 27,2006, for 27, 2006, for his portion of these ads.

20. Respondent  [Silverstone] reported his expenditure in his G4 CTR which was filed with the filing officer on March 10,2006 (the municipal election was held March 14, 2006.) Mr, McIntee also paid $562,50 to BTST on February 27,2006, as his portion of the ads that ran in the BTST between January 13, 2006 and March 10, 2006.”

21. “In an interview, Investigator Malphurs asked Respondent [Silverstone] why his payment to BTST for the five ads was not paid until February 27,2006. Respondent [Silverstone] stated he cannot recall why the invoice was not paid on January 4, 2006. Respondent said the invoices were always paid upon receipt.”

22. The complaint “alleged that the Respondent [Silverstone] to report expenditures to Zodiac Signs for campaign yard signs (Marjorie Evans 2010) The disclaimer on the signs states that both Respondent [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee paid for the signs. Respondent’s [Silverstone] CTRs do not contain specific entries for expenditures to Zodiac Signs for his portion of the cost of the yard signs. However payment appears to be included in the total reimbursements paid to Mr. McIntee.”

23. The complaint “alleged that the Respondent’s [Silverstone] 2006 G2 CTR, covering January 21, 2006 to February 3, 2006 does not show an expenditure for the newspaper advertisement that was published in BTST on January 27,2006. The disclaimer on the advertisement stated that it was paid by the Respondent [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee.” (Silverstone/Evans Couriel-2010 BTST 1/22/10 edition)

24. The complaint “also alleged that Respondents[Silverstone] 2006 G2 CTR does not show an expenditure for the flyrs. (Marjorie Evans 2010) Mr. McIntee reported an expenditure in the amount of $295 to National Multiple Listings for “printed flyers” on January 31, 2006.”

25. “The invoice from National Multiple Listings shows that on or about January 23, 2006 Mr. McIntee purchased 1,000 jumbo postcards that cost $295.74. The disclaimer on these jumbo postcards stated both Respondent [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee paid for the jumbo postcards. Mr. McIntee paid for the jumbo postcards purchased using his personal credit card and reimbursed himself $295 on or about January 31, 2006.”

“Respondent’s [Silverstone] CTR do not reflect any entries for expenditures to national Multiple Listings for his portion of the cost of the flyers, but they do reflect payments made to Jerome Mcintee for expenditures to National Multiple Listings.”

27. The complaint “alleged that Respondent’s [Silverstone] 2006 G2 report does not show expenditure for poistage stamps used to mail his flyers. Mr. McIntee reported an expenditure in the amount of $130 to Galt Ocean Postal Store with a purpose of “postage stamps” on February 1, 2006.”

28. “In a letter response to the questionnaire, Mr. McIntee stated he doew not have a receipt for his expenditure. When asked if he shared the postage with Respondent[Silverstone] Mr. McIntee did not answer the question. However, in a telephone interview on, Respondent [Silverstone] stated he did not reimburse Mr. McIntee for postage expenses.”

29. “Respondent [Silverstone] stated that Mr. McIntee wanted to make good use of left over flyers by mailing them to absentee voters. Respondent [Silverstone] said he didn’t think it was necessary, so Mr. McIntee mailed out the flyers at his own expense. When asked if Mr. McIntee had his permission to mail the flyers with his name on it, Respondent [Silverstone] stated “yes.” Respondent [Silverstone] said it was cheaper for Mr. McIntee to mail flyers with his name, than it would have been for Mr. McIntee to reprint and mail flyers without his name.”

30. The complaint ” alleged that Respondent’s [Silverstone] 2006 G3 CTR, covering February 4, 2006 to February 17, 2006, does not show expenditure for a newspaper ad that was published in the BTST on February 10, 2006. The disclaimer states that Respondent’s [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee paid for the ad.” (Silverstone/Evans/ Couriel 2010 BTST 1/22/10 edition)

31. The complaint ” alleges the Respondent’s [Silverstone] amended 2006 G4 CTR does not show an expenditure for newspaper advertisement that was published on February 24,2006.” The complaint “stated that although Respondent’s [Silverstone] report shows an entry to BTST dated March 7, 2006 in the amount od $562.50 it is unclear which of the four ads Respondent [Silverstone] is paying and the amount paid for each ad.”

32. The complaint “alleged that Respondent’s [Silverstone] CTR, covering March 10, 2006 to June 12, 2006 and code “FINAL” does not reference an expenditure for a newspaper ad published on March 10, 2006 although the report shows an expenditure to the newspaper on March 16,2006 for “Campaign Ads” in the amount of $1,500. Respondent [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee published a full page, color ad on the back cover of BTST on March 10, 2006. The disclaimer states the Respondent [Silverstone] paid for this ad.” (Silverstone/Evans/Couriel 2010 BTST 1/22/10 edition)

33. “Respondent [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee purchased 5,000 copies of a 12-page special edition titled Special Election Report, that was published in BTST on March 12, 2006. Respondent [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee distributed this special edition by hand. The disclaimer on this special edition states the Respondent [Silverstone] and Mr. McIntee paid for the special edition.”

34. “On March 13, 2006, BTST issued invoice number 525 to Respondent’s  [Silverstone] paid $1,500 to BTST on March 16,2006, and he reported this expenditure to his 2006 TR report which was filed with the filing officer on June 12, 2006 (the municipal election was held on March 14, 2006). Mr. McIntee paid $1,500 to BTST on May 22, 2006 as his portion of the the Special Edition.”

The complaint was made that Silverstone appeared to be “subsidized” by the paper and that Silverstone received a contribution after the date of the election. There was not provided enough evidence for the investigator to act on…The investigator did interview Eva Macmillan, an officer of the BTST, and Mrs. MacMillan stated she charged  Silverstone and Mcintee a flat fee for the Special Edition and still made a lot of money. ( Not what we heard in 2008!)…

The investigator found no probable cause…again in this writer’s opinion…a slap on the wrist by the State for Silverstone … and here is some more reasons why …

In the Preliminary Information papers … (some points reiterated from above.)…..

Table 2: Summary of all Shared Expenses” -Excerpts

Zodiac Signs yard signs amount $375.00/ Amt. pd by Silverstone 0/ Amt. pd By McIntee $375/ McIntee pd $200 on 1/6/06 and McIntee pf $175 on 1/19/06- Silverstone did not report expenditure

National Multiple Listings Flyer #1 Amt. billed $295.75/ Amt. pd. by Silverstone 0/ Amt. pd. by McIntee $295.74 on 1/23/06- Silverstone did not report expenditure

Postage Stamps Amt. billed $130.00/ Amt. pd. by Silverstone 0/ Amt. pd. by Mcintee $130.00/ $130 pd. by McIntee on 2/1/06- Silverstone did not report expenditure

Premium Graphics Amt. billed $746.78/ Silverstone pd. 0/ McIntee pd. $746.78/ McIntee pd. $746.78 on 2/1/06- Silverstone did report expenditure

National Multiple Listings Flyer #2 Amt. billed $677.34/ Silverstone pd. 0/ McIntee pd. $677.34/ McIntee pd. $677.34 on 3/7/06- Silverstone did not report expenditure

Postage Stamps Amt. billed $395.38/ Silverstone pd.0/ McIntee pd. $395.38/ McIntee pd. $395.38 on 3/16/06-Silverstone did not report expenditure

“SHARED 50/50 Totals” (some not listed above)  Amt. billed $6,745.24 / Amt. pd by Silverston $2,062.50/ Amt. pd. by McIntee $4,682.74

Silverstone reimbursed McIntee an additional $338.67 on 3/7/06 and $712.06 on 3/9/06 “For shared expenses paid for by Mr. McIntee”..

But..the totals on the “SHARED 50/50 Totals” then were Silverstone $3113.25/ McIntee $4,682.74…Hardly 50/50…OOPS!…

AND THIS…

59. “When I asked Respondent [Silverstone] why he did not pay for his ads up front, Respondent [Silverstone] stated he paid the invoices upon receipt. RESPONDENT [Silverstone] STATED THAT HE PAID HI INVOICES UPON RECEIPT. RESPONDENT [Silverstone] STATED HE HAD MONEY IN THE BANK SO MONEY WAS NOT THE ISSUE. HOWEVER, ACCORDING TO RESPONDENTS [Silverstone] BANK STATEMENTS, HE ONLY HAD $475 AVAILABLE ON JAN 4, 2006 (the date Mr. McIntee $1,125: Respondent’s [Silverstone] PORTION WAS  $562.50) …If Silvertone paid it he would have been overdrawn!….OOPS!..

62. “In a telephone interview on December 13, 2007, I asked Alina Medina, Respondent’s [Silverstone] former filing officer, what prompted her to instruct Respondent [Silverstone] to amend his reports to include expenditures for ads that ran in BTST. Ms. Medina stated that the newspapers were delivered in Town Hall and it was clear on its face that Respondent [Silverstone] was running ads that he had not reported paying for. (Silverstone/ Evans/ Couriel 2010 BTST 1/22/10 edition)…

79. “In a final interview, Respondent [Silverstone] stated “What happened is what happened.” Respondent stated that he does not believe he did anything wrong.”…WOW!

80. In 2007 on Feb. 26, April 6, Nov. 29 the investigator sent a questionnaire to the filing officer who was now June White…June White was also called on Dec. 7, 2007 and asked about the questionnaire …June White said  she could not complete the questionnaire because she was not the filing officer when Silverstone ran for office …June White said she  reviewed Silverstone’s campaign file and she could not say with certainty that he received the publications (“Handbook for Candidates” which would have spelled out the election rules)…

81. On Dec. 13, 2007 Ms. Medina stated Silverstone did receive his copy of the “2006 Candidate’s and Treasurer’s Handbook” when he registered as a candidate. …(So he should have known his required duties to pay his bills)…

82. “In an affidavit dated March 6, 2007, Respondent [Silverstone] stated that he had received Chapters 104 and 106, Florida Statutes, and a copy of the Handbook for Candidate; Respondent [Silverstone] did not identify the year the handbook was provide. Respondent [Silverstone] also stated he knew that the Handbook for Candidates and other publications were available on the Division of Elections’ website, and that he did review them. …(So he should have known the requirements to follow to pay his bills)…

83.”Respondent [Silverstone] also stated that to determine his responsibilities under Florida election laws, that he read Chapters 104 and 106, Florida Statutes and the Handbook for candidates. Respondent [Silverstone] signed his statement of Candidate form on Jan 1, 2006 …(New Years Day? …So, he should have known his responsibilities to pay his bills)…

THE KICKER…

84. “During my investigation of the allegations contained in the sworn complaint, I found that Respondent [Silverstone] misreported his expenditure to A Place for Silk and Respondent [Silverstone] made an expenditure for Tee-shirts on behalf of his slate partner. I also found that some of Respondent’s [Silverstone] political advertisements do not include the required disclaimer. ( CIC in  multiple BTST editions in 2009 /Silverstone, Couriel, Evans 2010 BTST 1/22/10 edition)…However, because these violations were not alleged in the complaint, I did not investigate this information.

Submitted on Sept. 3, 2008 Donna Malphurs Investigation Specialist…

To this writer ….In 2010, Investigator Malphurs will be speaking to Candidate -Commissioner Silverstone/Candidate Evans/ Candidate Couriel/ BTSTimes/ and the CIC once again for the very same reasons…Who’s paying their bills?…

Are these the candidates the voters want on the dais for the next 2-4 years in Lauderdale-By-The Sea?…

more to come……..

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