"Update: Secretary of State's Office Looking Into Quinn's Campaign Financial Setup" by Politics Blog | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Politics Blog

Update: Secretary of State's Office Looking Into Quinn's Campaign Financial Setup

As we noted in Tuesday's story on campaign finance reform, mayoral candidate Regina Quinn did not file a campaign finance report by the Jan. 31, 2013 deadline. This means one of two things -- either she is either in violation of Mississippi sunshine laws regarding campaign finance transparency, or she didn't raise or spend over $200 in 2012 on her campaign.

This morning, another campaign told the JFP that a non-profit organization was founded under the name "Jackson United" to Elect Regina Quinn, Mayor. It was incorporated on June 18, 2012.

This afternoon, we discovered the incorporation document that shows that the non-profit was formed by Jackson attorney John Richard May, Jr. for the purposes of "Political Advocacy and Public Education."

Mississippi code prohibits incorporated committees and associations and incorporated companies and corporations from contributing more than $1,000 per year, directly or indirectly, to a candidate or the candidate's committee. They are also prohibited from contributing more than $1,000 annually to any political party.

The penalty for such action is a fine no less than $1,000 or more than $5,000 against the corporation.

It is unclear what, if any, contributions the non-profit organization has made at this time. May could not be reached for comment Tuesday afternoon.

A link to a copy of the filing for incorporation for "Jackson United" follows below.

http://www.jacksonfreepress.com/documents/2013/mar/19/regina-quinns-non-profit-filing/">Jackson United's incorporation documentation

Update: After a Tuesday afternoon request from the JFP for clarification on the law pertaining to incorporated entities and political campaigns, the office of Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann has attorneys looking into the legality of a campaign being set up as a non-profit organization. As of 3:45 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, there was still no consensus. Stay tuned for more updates.

Comments

donnaladd 5 years, 8 months ago

BTW, John May is Quinn's husband. She just emailed that he is calling Tyler back to discuss. Stay tuned.

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Knowledge06 5 years, 8 months ago

Shouldn't the headline of the article read: 'Candidate's Husband Incorporated Non-Profit In Support of His Wife'? I'm sure most people won't know that John May is Regina Quinn's husband.

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donnaladd 5 years, 8 months ago

Sure, I can add that. Good point.

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tyler.cleveland 5 years, 8 months ago

John Richard May said the incorporated non-profit "Jackson United" to Elect Regina Quinn, Mayor is what others would refer to as a political action committee. In short, it is her fund-raising arm of her campaign. While state law prohibits these organizations from contributing more than $1,000 annually, May argues that there is no statute which makes it illegal for the organization itself to take in and give out money.

"If you look at the statute, there is nothing there that prohibits the organization from raising money for Regina's campaign," May said. "It was set up as a non-profit so if we decided to drop out or the election turned out unfavorably we could give any excess money to charity."

Trying to get the Secretary of State's office now to confirm.

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MelishiaDG 5 years, 8 months ago

I love the idea of the Regina Quinn campaign doing that with the intentions to give back. How is this different than the Jackson20/20 thing for Lee? I just hope that they have not gotten into ant red tape, which they probably have not, since they are both prominent lawyers...

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donnaladd 5 years, 8 months ago

It is different, Melishia, but we're still sorting out particulars. Tyler has left messages for secretary of state to find out if it is legal to do it as a nonprofit. There seems to be nothing illegal about the PAC supporting Lee.

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mcGowan 5 years, 8 months ago

Ok, I can see that. So, what is the name of Regina's campaign committee? I thought you had to have one (a committee) ...or is the non profit her committee? And if they have donated, does that mean she would have had to have filed a finance report already? I really like the charity idea, btw, I wish more campaigns thought of that.

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donnaladd 5 years, 8 months ago

The way we understand it, so far, is that the non-profit IS her campaign committee. And, yes, she should have filed a campaign finance report already.

We'll be reporting more about the legality of the non-profit angle. Stay tuned.

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mcGowan 5 years, 8 months ago

Thanks Donna. I can only imagine how hectic it most be to answer everyone's questions on here and I just want to say I appreciate it.

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donnaladd 5 years, 8 months ago

You're welcome. Sometimes we do a better job than others!

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