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By Randy Economy and Brian Hews
A political front committee that supported key figures in the city of Maywood has been slapped with fines from the official state oversight commission that polices political activities in California.
On Monday, the Fair Political Practices Commission ruled that political action committees long connected to city leaders in the tiny southeast Los Angeles city of Maywood violated state statues and must now pay fines totalling $7,000.
The first case ruling in Maywood centered around a political committee called “Familias por Maywood.”
The group was supporting current Mayor Oscar Magana and former city council member Edward Varela in their campaigns.
According to FPPC Senior Attorney Dave Bainbridge and Special Investigator Simon Russel, the group “Familias por Maywood was set up specifically as a campaign committee that over the years has been controlled by various candidates for city council in the City of Maywood.
State officials in their ruling said that in the 2009 General Election, Varela and Magaña were candidates for Maywood City Council and that both failed to disclose cumulative contributions of $100 or more on the committee’s 2009 pre-election campaign statement, in violation of Government Code Section 84211. The ruling resulted in a total penalty of $2,000. Magana won his campaign while Varela lost.
The FPPC also docked “Familias por Maywood” for their involvement in campaigns with city council member Veronica Guardado, and former city council member Ana Rosa Rizo.
Bainbridge and Russell with the FPPC determined that “Familias por Maywood,” is a campaign committee that was controlled by Guardado and Rizo from 2007 through October 2009 and that during that time, the “respondents failed to timely file two semi-annual campaign statements, in violation of Government Code Section 84200” and was fined $5,000.
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