Letter to Dennis Walsh

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Letter to Dennis Walsh

AFFR
January 9, 2011

Dennis Walsh,

        Your aggressive approach to ending the miss-use of funds by officers at the District Council and Local Unions as well as holding those officers accountable has been very promising.  This is the memberships dues and assessment money and is not the officers personal bank account.  One of the funds I have not seen mentioned yet is the Political Action Committee (PAC) fund.  The PAC is funded by money from a membership assessment of 5 cents an hour.  I have spoken to many delegates and several executive delegates they all told me they had never seen a detailed report on the PAC fund expenditures. In fact the executive delegates did not know credit cards even existed and never approved paying the bills. I was also told that the only 2 expenditures  approved, other than standard expenditures, were Lobby Day in Albany and the NYS AFL-CIO event in Saratoga. So I took it upon myself to review the records for 2006 thru 2010 on the NYS Board of Elections website file #AO1226  NYC District Council of Carpenters PAC.  What I found is certainly questionable and may well be criminal.  I looked at two specific expenditures,  credit card payments and reimbursements to the District Council.  The first thing that drew my attention was the box for explanation of expenditure is left blank on all of them.  I also noticed that all political contributions, promotional material, shirts and printing were all payed by check. So what were the credit card bills and reimbursements to the DC for?  Below is a list of the expenditures for each year I reviewed and  I am asking you to investigate them:

Year Ending                 2006             2007            2008             2009            2010

Credit Card Bills      $47,215        $51,740        $78,205        $54,197       $3,601      

Reimburse to DC     $341,103      $366,173      $376,971      $442,322     $115,882

        From 2006 thru 2009 these unexplained expenditures were between $400,000 and $500,000 each year.  In 2010 while under  International supervision these expenditures were considerably less.  This leaves me with two questions to be answered:

1.  From 2006 thru 2009 was Steve McInnis  (PAC Director)  and other officers using the PAC fund as slush fund and were they violating NYS election law.

2.  Why were these expenditures considerably less in 2010 than in the previous 4 years?  The obvious answer is that Frank Spencer and Terry Mooney found something questionable or maybe even criminal and corrected it.  While I commend Spencer for finding and fixing the problem,  I’m wondering if he turned it over for further investigation as the Consent Decree and all subsequent Stipulations and Orders mandate?  

        In closing I am requesting that you conduct a thorough investigation into the PAC fund expenditures, their legitimacy and their benefit to the membership.  Also Frank Spencer and Terry Mooney should be investigated for possibly being in contempt of court for failing to turn over for further investigation questionable and maybe even criminal expenditures of the PAC fund.  There should also be an inquiry into any Campaign Finance Laws that may have been violated.

Anonymous For Fear of Retribution  
   
cc  Honorable Richard Berman
     Lisa Zornberg Asst. US Attorney
     Ben Torrance Asst. US Attorney
     Douglas McCarron UBCJA
     Gregory Petterson Chairman NYS Board of Elections