Thursday, May 15, 2014

BOMBSHELL: Mason ELECs 'Disguise' Payments to Political Operatives


Why would a candidate report "in-kind contributions" to ELEC years after the campaign ended, then disburse 96% of these "in-kind" contributions to a defunct LLC (charter revoked in 2012) and to a political 'consultant'?

Ask candidate Beth Mason or Treasurer Ricky Mason.    Coincidentally last February  ELEC filed a complaint against the Masons and their campaign for numerous late reporting violations.

Note Mason's 2011 municipal election was held on May 10, 2011.  Over three years ago.   But according to GA's investigation of ELEC reports filed from July 19, 2012 to April 16, 2014, this account is still active.    

Further, Mason reports large payments to political operatives  as "in-kind contributions."

And who is making these large "in-kind" contributions?

The candidate herself, Beth Mason.  Mason may have won her election 3 years ago, but since that day she has "contributed" a whopping $221,594  to her 2011 campaign in a combo of in-kind contributions, loans and currency donations.   

HUH???  Red flag, anyone?

Scrub-a-dub.

And... why isn't Mason reporting payments to political operatives as "disbursements" instead of "in-kind contributions"?

This reporting strategy allows Mason to conceal the identities of operatives she is paying by "writing checks" directly to third-parties (the LLC or another operative) then reporting the payments as "in-kind" contributions. 

Accordingly, entities receiving these payments can direct them or distribute them to other operatives and use monies freely for any purpose without reporting to ELEC or other state and federal agencies. Designed to skirt "transparency"and other state and federal reporting mechanisms.

GA reviewed the above ELECs- all contributions made post Election day

An example: Mason's July 19, 2012 ELEC filing.  You can see  $47,002.85 was reported under receipts and expenditures as an "in-kind contribution"

R-1 - Quarterly January 15 2011 ELEC, filed 7/19/11
Schedule B shows that of the $47,002.85 "in-kind contribution" total,  $36,000 was paid to "Cutting Edge Communications," $7,500 was paid to a political Consultant, and $502.85 went to a vendor for "campaign printing".

Schedule G is left blank. Blank?  The campaign has not reported these payments? 

R-1 - Quarterly January 15 2011 ELEC, filed 7/19/11 by Mason 2011 Municipal Campaign
 The campaign is only reporting a  disbursement of $ 6,010!  The $47,002.85 washed through.


Here's another 'neat' trick on Mason's 2011 ELEC reports. If you don't want to show disbursements, flip the chart 90 degrees!  Yes, the campaign flipped  Disbursement Schedules from landscape view to a portrait view-- which chops the table in half, and columns with disbursement amounts are cut off.    An accident?  If so, the accident occurs on nearly every ELEC report I reviewed.

See what I mean? 
R-1 ELEC,  Quarterly Oct 15, 2011, filed 10/15/11 by Mason 2011 Municipal campaign
If anyone is curious, "Cutting Edge Communications" paid $98,000 with Mason's "in-kind contributions" is an LLC registered by political operative Barry Brendel in 2009.

Brendel shooting GA's pic at a 2013 ZBA meeting.  Brendel and his son, Tim, harassed me at my meetings from 2012- 2013.

And there's son, Tim Brendel!  He shot video of GA at this 2012 ZBA meeting.  The video was featured on the 'Nazi Truck' in the 2012 BoE campaign.

Brendel's LLC was revoked in 2012, after 2 consecutive years of not filing annual reports with the state.  But that didn't stop the "in-kind contributions" to Brendel's Cutting Edge Communication from Beth Mason.



For the purposes of full disclosure,  here is the data GA culled from the Mason ELECs.

5 comments:

  1. I'll say it: money laundering. I dont believe half the money went where she claims it did. She writes checks, calls them in-kind contributions, "reports" it to ELEC in case anybody asks. Her operatives NEVER show up on ELECs but the money gets routed to them.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Her operatives dont show on elecs but she pays ALL of them. ALL. I know for a fact.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ricky Mason signed that ELEC?

    ReplyDelete
  4. hey GA, check it out, from today's Hangin' On the Vine, awesome!!!:

    "Go to the GA (Grafix Avenger) website and witness one of the best investigative reporting jobs in Hudson County on a continual basis. This gal’s blog belongs in a major newspaper or on PolitikerNJ.com"

    ReplyDelete