Monday, February 06, 2006

Why a good treasurer is a must for a campaign

Dan Meisler and the Argus today set its sights on Edmund Senkowski, who was Joe Hune's opponent in 2004.

""Edmund Senkowski, the Democratic candidate who ran unsuccessfully against state Rep. Joe Hune, R-Hamburg Township, in the 2004 election for state House, owes the state more than $4,000 in fines for not filing campaign finance disclosure reports.
The Michigan Department of State has sent Senkowski six notices of past-due fines totaling $4,075 for either filing documents past the deadlines, or not filing them at all.""

I briefly mentioned this in a previous post, but I didn't fire both barrels at Edmund Senkowski on this. I knew about this back in 2004, but decided to hold my fire since Senkowski had no chance to win with the campaign (or lack of) that he was running. I told Joe Hune and a few others I personally knew, but that's about it. Joe had a good record to run on and was going to coast to a 70-30 win, and as far as I knew, Senkowski wasn't being a jerk, so a negative attack wasn't going to help either Joe or myself.

The lesson from this story is that candidates (both republican and democrat) need to know what they are getting into when they are running. The other lesson is that they need to have their most competent and trustworthy individual be their treasurer. From what I could see from a distance, Senkowski had no clue whatsoever on filing matters, and neither did his treasurer, presumably a family member. If anyone here knows Senkowski, they should tell him to call the Sec of State and get this taken care of ASAP. Sometimes they will drop or reduce fines, but ignoring them isn't going to help matters. Mistakes happen and can be corrected with amended reports, but "failure to file" is the worst possible choice to make.

For future candidates, one thing that helps is the waiver box for extremely low budget campaigns (under $1000). Those who check that box and raise less than $1000 do not have to file reports. Those who check the box and raise over $1000 need to file them.

One thing I can say is that I've never been fined on anything I have treasurered, and I've done treasury and filing work off and on for five years. Everything's been turned in on time, and anything with mistakes has been corrected with a pain in the arse Amended report. I hate amendment reports and haven't had to do one since I was a rookie. I don't play games with this stuff. They've seen it all, and even Geoff Fieger got caught.

In other news, the Steelers beat the Seahawks 21-10. Good to see Detroit native Jerome Bettis get his ring back in his hometown. Retiring as a champion back home - can't beat that.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Whomever said, "I have met the enemy and it is us" said it best. Proof positive that the us versus them is no way to run a railroad.