50th Assembly candidate Kurtz settles with ethics commission over reporting errors
Candidate for the 50th District Wisconsin Assembly Tony Kurtz reached an agreement Aug. 16 with the Wisconsin Ethics Commission for receiving funds before his campaign was officially registered and failing to disclose those transactions in financial reports.
Kurtz, the Republican candidate for the position, was fined $294 to settle with the commission for failing to disclose one in-kind contribution made by Kurtz and one financial obligation made toward his campaign, Kurtz for Assembly, before it was registered with the commission May 26.
“We basically had a little snafu with my paperwork,” Kurtz told the Times-Press.
Kurtz said he decided to run May 14 and only had two weeks to get registered. Kurtz, who is a farmer, said the short time period combined with the May 31 deadline for his corn insurance meant he had a busy schedule and something slipped through the cracks, he said.
“I missed the deadline, no doubt about it,” Kurtz said. “During that time a lot was going on… I was very proactive about it.”
Kurtz said he called the ethics committee and discussed the error.
The settlement states $1,848.22 was paid by the Republican Assembly Campaign Committee on May 18 for mailing services on behalf of Kurtz for Assembly. The settlement also states Kurtz paid $92.45 to Checkered Flag in Reedsburg for campaign shirts on behalf of the campaign. Both were a violation of state statue of accepting contributions, making disbursements or incurring obligations before the committee was registered.
The reason the campaign excluded the contributions made from the Republican Assembly Campaign Committee on the mailing services is listed in the settlement as the result of an administrative error because the invoice was not received by the campaign before the filing deadline.
Campaign finance records show both transactions were amended Aug. 3 and included in the July 2018 Continuing Reporting period, which ranges from Jan. 1 through June 30.
Kurtz faces Democratic challenger Art Shrader for the 50th District Assembly position for the Nov. 6 fall election. The seat is currently held by Republican Ed Brooks who is retiring.
Editor’s Note: This story was edited at 4:15 p.m. Oct. 5 to clarify Kurtz’s comments on calling the ethics committee.